Some pet stores just never learn. In the old days, it might have been fine for a pet shop to carry animals bred in mills, but this is the twenty-first century and we all know better now.
Or do we? We just found a tragic story about a pet shop in Pennsylvania that seems to be a living hell for the animals it sells and for the employees who are trying to care for them. You are not going to believe this story until you read it.
Robinson Petland in Robinson Township, Pennsylvania, has been getting a lot of unwanted public attention lately thanks to a young woman and the power of social media.
Former employee Katelyn Cerciello had worked at the pet store for just about a month before she “couldn’t watch the owner refuse vet care for sick puppies anymore, ship them back to the Hunte Corporation to be euthanized, or in general sell puppy-mill puppies for thousands of dollars to the unknowing public.”
In a post on her Facebook page, she presented photographs of the terrible conditions the poor animals were living in. after her Facebook post became viral, local media started to cover the story.
Speaking with local reporters, she said “You could tell they were sick. 9-week-old puppies should be bouncing and playing, but they’d be lying on the floor. I kept telling him something needs to be done and he wouldn’t do anything.”
It was then that she decided to take her complaints from the stockroom to the public. In a graphic Facebook post that included heartbreaking pictures she alleges were taken at the pet shop, she wrote:
“I was basically horrified at the sight of white mice in the back room,” she wrote. “They were bloody, smelled like rotting flesh, and horrendous looking.”
She went on to describe an incident where there was a discrepancy between the number of puppies ordered from a breeder and what the vendor delivered, writing “It was known that there was supposed to be 13 puppies arriving on the truck. Only 10 of those 13 made it to Petland. I was told by the older ladies who work in the kennel that those puppies were pulled from the truck on the way because they had DIED.”
She concluded by saying “I just want people to know what actually happens there, what they’re spending thousands of dollars on.”
When reached for a comment on the accusations, the owner of the pet store said that they were baseless and that Cerciello had made up the stories as well as the pictures she posted.
The manager of the store added that Robinson Petland is up to date with its certifications and practices as laid out by the American Kennel Club and that because of the negative publicity, they have had to close the store early due to “personal threats on employees and harassment.”
At this time, it is unclear if local or state regulatory agencies or law enforcement are looking into the accusations.
This story has generated a number of comments from people who were shocked to hear the allegations.
“I usually don’t condone physical violence but I wouldn’t mind seeing the store owners and the puppy mill people in tiny little cages without adequate food, water, and potties for about a month or two. And I wouldn’t mind seeing that in public for all to see,” said one particularly incensed respondent.
How do you feel about puppy mills? Every year some state tries to stop them but gets shut down by “agricultural” interests and lobbyists. Should the practice be banned? Share your thoughts and ideas with us here.