Dog sitting services like Rover seem like a good idea in theory, but the increasing number of horror stories is making dog lovers more cautious. Even if you find a sitter through an app that does a background check, it’s still good to get to know the person and their home before leaving your dogs behind. Sadly, two North Carolina German Shepherds have become the latest Rover victims.
Nala and Jager were left with a woman who operated a dog boarding and walking business through Rover. Yet, the woman didn’t give the dogs even basic care. Both dogs passed away within only a few days, and police realized the situation was worse than they first thought.
Sitter Lets Dogs Die
Pamala Lynn Rodriguez was supposed to be caring for Nala and Jager when they passed away. The two German Shepherds were in her care for five days before Rodriguez noticed any issues. And by then, it was already too late.
Rodriguez found Nala dead in her crate, and only a few hours later, she noticed Jager was lethargic. She took Jager to the emergency vet, but he died while there.
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New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office Animal Services requested necropsies for both dogs. The necropsies showed that the dogs died due to extreme dehydration and starvation. So, officers went to investigate the place the dogs were kept.
“Before you let anybody watch your pets, watch your animals, make sure that you get some references and that you know that they’re dependable and you can trust them,” said New Hanover County Sheriff Ed McMahon.
16 Other Pets Rescued
Police found 16 other animals in Rodriguez’s care, and they were in deplorable conditions. The space was about 85 degrees Fahrenheit with no fans and no access to water. It was extremely filthy and smelled of urine. Several dogs were kept in crates that were too small for them, but luckily, no other animals were dead.
“It was horrendous what we found in there, and we ended up getting 16 other animals from her and taking care of them, getting them back to owners,” McMahon said.
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The situation is currently an ongoing investigation. Rodriguez was charged with two counts of felony animal cruelty and given a $2100 secure bond. No updates have been posted publicly at this time.
Sadly, situations like this are becoming increasingly common. Many dogs have been put in danger after being left with a stranger. Even though Rover does a background check on its sitters, it’s always good to be cautious. If you ever have a weird feeling about a sitter, trust your gut and find somewhere else to take your pup. It’s better to be safe than sorry in these situations.
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