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Mount Vernon man sues PetSmart following puppy’s deathPosted: Updated:
A Westchester man is suing PetSmart, saying he dropped off his puppy to be groomed at the Pelham store in February but that the dog never made it out alive.
Darrin Harris, of Mount Vernon, says he and his 10-month-old bull dog puppy, Enzo, were very close.
“The last time I saw him was through a window, an emergency window and literally black and blue, not being able to breathe,” he says.
Harris says Enzo was prone to breathing problems because of his breed.
Enzo's veterinarian, Manor Veterinary Clinic’s Dr. Richard Jakimer, says anxiety-induced problems from inside a groomer could have caused the dog’s respiratory system to shut down.
“Because of the structural abnormalities the bulldogs have, they're not capable of air exchange, warm air out, cold air in, as a dog with a longer nose,” says Jakimer.
In a statement, a Petsmart spokesperson says "the associate involved acted appropriately and with Enzo's care in mind by recognizing his signs of stress, stopping all services and immediately taking Enzo to the veterinarian." It added that there is no way of knowing the definitive cause of death, because Enzo also had kidney disease.
Dr. Jakimer says his condition was under control.
“Kidney disease that Enzo had could have very well been a birth defect. It happened, the changes happened very gradually so Enzo was able to accommodate to it,” says Jakimer.