Dog boarder charged after 2 dogs die in her care, sheriff says
WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - A North Carolina woman who runs a dog walking and boarding business is facing animal cruelty charges after two dogs under her care died, according to the sheriff’s office.
New Hanover Sheriff’s Office Animal Services Unit has charged Pamala Lynn Rodriguez with two counts of felony cruelty to animals, WECT reports.
Rodriguez had been asked to board two German shepherds, Nala and Jager, through Rover.com, a website through which pet owners can connect with pet sitters and dog walkers, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.
After five days of boarding the dogs, Rodriguez said she woke up and found Nala dead, the release states. Later that day, she said Jagar was acting lethargic, so she took him to the emergency vet, where he died.
“Before you let anybody watch your pets, watch your animals, make sure that you get some references and that you know that they’re dependable and you can trust them,” said New Hanover County Sheriff Ed McMahon.
Necropsies were performed on both dogs. The sheriff’s office says they died due to extreme dehydration and starvation.
Animal Services deputies executed a search warrant on Rodriguez’s home. According to the news release, it was “extremely filthy, over 85 degrees with no fans, and smelled of urine.” Multiple dogs were found in crates that were too small, and none of them had food or water.
“It was horrendous what we found in there, and we ended up getting 16 other animals from her and taking care of them, getting them back to owners,” McMahon said.
The sheriff’s office says that this is an ongoing investigation.
“We’re just not going to tolerate cruelty to our passenger animals in this county,” McMahon said.
Rodriguez was booked under a $2,100 secure bond.
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