PetSmart faces animal abuse allegations after at least four dogs died in the store's custody

Apr 19, 2018
02:25 A.M.
Share this pen

The retail chain has come under major fire after recent incidents that have occurred with people's pets under their care. 


PetSmart could be facing serious legal trouble after an investigation was launched into their treatment of pets in a number of different stores.

As reported by Animal Channel, at least four dogs have died either during or shortly after they were taken to PetSmart stores for grooming. 

All four of the deaths have occurred in the past five months, and three of the incidents happened at New Jersey stores. 

The most recent death was that of Chuck Crawford's 8-year-old Corgi Abby, on March 29. Crawford was not only devastated at the news, but irritated by how PetSmart chose to share the news with him. 


“It was a 20-second phone call. It was so crude and beyond comprehension. To take your pet for a grooming and have them die? That is the absolute worst thing,” he told

Crawford had taken both his dogs in to be groomed, and had collected his other Corgi, Harley, without incident. To make matters even more confusing, Crawford was told he would have to collect Abby's remains at a different store.  


PetSmart released a statement about the incident, explaining that when Abby had "become unresponsive" they had taken her to a different PetSmart where there was a veterinarian on hand. 

Before Crawford took Abby in, another pet owners, Danielle DiNapoli, had a similar experience at the end of Decemer 2017 with her dog Scruffles.

She shared her horrific experience, explaining that the groomers refused to release any information to her, including the name of the groomer who was handling her dog and a report of the incident that led to the death. 


Tara Fiet was another one who had to deal with an unexpected death of her fur-baby. Her dog, Ranger, had returned from his grooming appointment lethargic, and had suddenly passed away two days later. 

He had previously been in perfect health. 

David Bolduc's dog George had also returned from a grooming at the same store in Flemington as Fiet and DiNapoli had used with a serious back injury. The store was unable to provide him with an explanation. 

Fortunately, these owners loved their fur-babies enough to demand justice. DiNapoli and her family have filed a lawsuit against PetSmart for the suffering and death of Scruffles. 

Whether or not PetSmart faces justice for these unexpected deaths, it is certainly a cautionary tale for pet owners to ensure they vet anyone to whom they give custody of their dogs.