Unfortunately, stories like this one seem more and more common these days. A human needs to leave their dog, whether it’s for work or travel, and they leave their pup in the care of a Wag! sitter or walker. Then, something awful happens to their dog. This recently happened to one dog mom and the story is no less heartbreaking. While this story is tragic and heartbreaking, we want people to be aware of the dangers. And hopefully avoid further pain and loss.
Woman Seeks Dog Sitter
Patricia Thomas of Albuquerque, New Mexico loves her three dogs fiercely.
“I don’t have human kids. I have dog kids,” she told KOB4.
That’s why when she went on vacation she did her due diligence to find the right person to watch her kids. Before her trip, Patricia hired Wag! dog walkers to take out her three dogs: Sage, Gemma, and Rascal.
Out of the three, Rascal needed a bit more attention. The nine-year-old dog was diabetic and had Cushing’s disease. But, Patricia’s vet had Rascal on a medical regime that was keeping the pup healthy.
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So when she planned a vacation to the East Coast, Patricia took care to find someone who could meet her three dogs’ needs. Patricia hired Wag! walkers several months before her trip. She selected someone who had walked her dogs in the past. Then, Patricia asked the sitter to come over ahead of time to review all of the instructions to take care of her dogs.
She did everything in her power to make sure her dogs would be well taken care of. Despite all that, Patricia would return home to find that one her dogs did not receive the care he so desperately needed.
Patricia left for her trip. A few days after she departed she got a text from the sitter about her nine-year-old Bichon Frises. The sitter told her Rascal was sick. Patricia asked the sitter to take her dog to the vet clinic across the street. For some unknown reason, the sitter did not take Rascal for medical care.
The sweet pup died the next day.
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When Patricia returned home she was heartbroken. As she recalled the experience to KOB4, emotion clogged Patricia’s words.
“It’s hard for me to look at pictures of him because I feel guilty. I feel guilty for leaving him with improper care. I thought it was going to be sufficient but it wasn’t.”
Not only did Patricia lose her dog, but she also found some discrepancies with the sitter’s story. Patricia watched home surveillance video and saw that while Rascal was ill, the dog sitter apparently had time to dye her hair purple. She also found an unopened package of needles that were supposed to be used to provide Rascal with medication.
Of course, she alerted Wag! to the awful circumstances. They did not make Patricia pay for her dog-sitting services. Also, Wag! paid for Rascal’s cremation and made a donation in his name. But none of those items will bring Rascal back to Patricia.
We send our deepest condolences to Patricia for her loss. We wish her healing during this tough time. We also urge you to learn from this harrowing experience. Make sure you get references for your dog sitters. Get referrals from friends. You can never do too much to ensure the safety of your fur babies!
While Wag’s intentions are good, the process they use to vet and train their dog walkers/sitters is obviously lacking. There have been too many stories like this one as of late. We hope that Wag! takes note and makes some serious changes.
Featured image c/o KOB4
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