Former Petland employee, pet owners speak out amid investigation
CITY OF FAIRFAX, Va. (FOX 5 DC) - While police continue to investigate a disturbing undercover video that revealed more than a dozen dead rabbits that were found in shopping bags in a freezer at a Fairfax pet store, more people are coming forward to complain about the now shut down Petland location.
The Humane Society of the United States says officers found more than 30 dead rabbits and a puppy in the freezer at the store. Their report described a steady stream of sick puppies.
Tracee Kuhlbert told FOX 5 Thursday that she's disgusted with the former Petland store. She says she spent more than $2,000 last week on Izzy -- a chocolate lab puppy.
The store's contracted vet had signed off that the dog was healthy, but within a few days, Izzy was having trouble urinating.
"Not only does she have a UTI, she has coccidia and she also has roundworm," said Kuhlbert.
Kuhlbert says she saw FOX 5's story about the Humane Society's investigation on Tuesday and reached out.
The Humane Society sent an investigator in to the store undercover. The person worked in the store for two months, secretly filming not only sick puppies but also rabbits that were dying off and being kept in grocery bags in the freezer.
Ryan Corridon worked at the store briefly about a year and a half ago. She says she didn't feel right about the conditions there -- for the rabbits or puppies.
She told FOX 5, one night a staff member forgot to latch a dog's crate and it fell several feet to the floor.
"I had to take care of it. It was screaming…. make sure it didn't die on the spot," said Corridon.
She says the next day, despite her protests, the puppy was sold to a customer.
"I said, 'that's not right,' it could have internal bleeding, it could have broken bones, anything could be wrong with the dog," said Corridon. "That night I got fired. He pulled me aside and said they didn't have enough money to keep me on."
Petland cut ties with the store Wednesday.
Both women are hoping the ongoing investigation by the Fairfax City Police brings charges for those responsible.
The Humane Society claims Petland stores nationwide have been cutting corners. A spokesperson says they've received more than 1,300 complaints about sick animals since 2006.