WALLINGFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Three dogs purchased within 10 days of each other at the All Pets Club in Wallingford got sick days after they were brought home.
The three had similar symptoms including a runny nose, lethargy, and a fever.
“You see the dog and you just fall in love with him and he’d been there a while. He was getting a little big,” said Brooke Goff when she and her partner, Angie, bought a 4 mo. old Newfoundland. They named him Harry.
They say they fell in love with Harry hard. That’s why his loss is just as heavy.
Angie said, “I can’t look at his little bed. I have his stuff downstairs. It’s terrible. He was such a big bear and you fall in love with them in an instant.”
That instant happened on May 8th. They bought Harry for $2,600 at the Wallingford’s All Pets Club. The store’s vet gave him a clean bill of health and they brought him home to Meriden.
Angie said, “He was calm. He slept a lot that he would be a very good family dog and we just fell in love with him.”
Family was in town so they boarded him at a kennel. A day and a half he got sick in his crate.
“We took him out and he started to get violently ill and I called the emergency vet,” said Angie.
Even with antibiotics, 3 hours later, she says Harry died. The animal hospital sent paperwork stating the Bordetella and Mycoplasma that lead to Harry’s death has an incubation period of 1 to 2 weeks. That means he contracted the virus 10 to 14 days before he showed symptoms.
“He was kenneled 36 hours before he passed away, not even. It’s not physically possible for a dog to develop advanced pneumonia and close down a lung in 36 hours,” said Goff.
In North Haven, the Grecos added a 3rd dog to their pack from Wallingford’s All Pets Club on May 14th. For $2,000 dollars, they welcomed home a 10-week-old Great Dane and named him Griffey.
“When he came by, I made eye contact with him and that was it. I think my daughter and I fell in love with him at first sight,” said Amy Greco. Within days, they noticed Griffey wasn’t feeling well.
“It’s still crippling and heartbreaking,” said Greco. “When we brought him to the vet we found out he was very ill.”
She said, “He had a temperature above 103F. He was not playful at the vet’s office.”
Her veterinarian did X-rays and told them Griffey had scar tissue on his lungs. His paperwork from All Pets Club showed they had just treated him for being sick.
“It’s his second round of antibiotics in his short little life,” said Greco.
A North Carolina Family had a similar experience. Amanda Elliott said her Beagle named Joey cost $1,400 on May 15th. He’s now being treated for pneumonia.
“We will not sell a dog that we knowingly know is sick. Absolutely won’t,” said co-owner of All Pets Club, Ed Foucault. They’ve owned the business 26 years. He says they just passed their state inspection last week. Foucalt says their three veterinarians they have on staff check every dog before they’re purchased.
“Did we do something intentional? Absolutely not. Did something arise? Yes. Could it be from the facility? This is not something that I’m trying to deny,” said Foucalt.
He says if they saw a sick dog their vets would address it.
“We do something every single day for that. We run those checks. We talk to our veterinarians. Anything. We always pull and isolate if we see something and if we need to be they go up to our veterinarian to be checked, but we weren’t seeing any other symptoms,” said Foucalt.
The Greco’s only have family photos of Griffey now. They made the difficult decision to return him worried for the safety of their other pets.
Greco said, “I’m still not over it. I’ll never be over it but I would not want my children to have to burry 3 dogs.”
“I just think that they should be more careful and have a better standard of care for their puppies.”
Griffey is back at the store, Foucalt says he’s getting better.
The owner of all pets club says he’s waiting for the cause of death of Harry so that they know for their records what he died from.
Some of the puppy owners are planning a protest at the store on this Friday. Brooke Goff and her partner Angie started a Facebook page for their dog called “Justice for Harry“.