A Wellington woman’s dog almost died while in the care of a pet boarding house.
Now Animal Care and Control of Palm Beach County (ACC) has launched an investigation into the incidents reported to Pawsitively Love in Loxahatchee.
ACC said the facility is operated from a private home. He faces four different quotes from ACC, including animal overcrowding and refusal to cooperate with investigators in handing over the files.
We learned from ACC that this is a common problem they face in Palm Beach County – especially in rural areas like The Acreage and Palm Beach and the county – is trying to quell it.
Just a few weeks ago, Peanut – a French Bulldog – was on his deathbed.
âA lot of bizarre, unethical and disturbing things have happened,â said Peanut owner Elizabeth Calzadilla.
Strong accusations from Calzadilla, who says he used the Rover.com pet boarding website to book a stay for Peanut and her other dog, Pickle, at Pawsitively Love. Rover.com is a national website that allows businesses to advertise their services and connect with their customers.
Calzadilla had used Rover.com to book with Pawsitively for a two day stay and had no issues the first time around. When she ran out of time, she decided to use Rover.com a second time.
âI never saw where they kept the animals but everything looked good,â she said.
In retrospect, Calzadilla said there were several red flags, such as asking for payment in advance.
âI took it for granted that they didn’t even ask for a vaccination record,â she said.
On the first night, Calzadilla said he received a frantic phone call from the owner’s daughter.
âShe basically told me that you have to accept that your dog can die,â she said.
The business owner then picked up the phone and explained that Peanut had allegedly been in contact with a poisonous bufo toad.
âShe said, ‘If your dog dies, I’ll just buy you another dog.’ Like a member of my family is recyclable, âCalzadilla said.
Calzadilla said the owners of the business told her they initially told the vets at the Palms West Vet Clinic that Peanut was theirs and therefore she could not contact the vet. This, Calzadilla was told, would result in the vet refusing peanut care – something she later found out to be false.
Calzadilla also later learned from the vet that Peanut was brought to them more than an hour after contact with the toad.
Elizabeth has connected with others, who claim their dogs were left in barns with no air conditioning and no access to medication at the boarding school.
The incidents prompted ACC to launch an investigation into the boarding school.
“She has more animals on this property than is allowed,” said Dianne Sauve, director of ACC.
Sauve has confirmed that Pawsitively is not properly terminated.
âThey can’t get this permit unless they’re zoned appropriately,â she said. “Very few residential communities want large dog boarding facilities right next to them.”
The ACC says this is an example of ongoing zoning issues with pet boarding schools, operating from homes in rural Palm Beach County.
âIt came on our radar a few years ago,â Sauve said. “Just because you can go online and sign up to be a professional dog trainer or daycare doesn’t mean you’re legal in Palm Beach County.”
WPTV visited the Pawsitively Love property to ask them about the ACC investigation, but one of the owners told us he didn’t want to comment.
The ACC encourages pet owners to do their homework while seeking a pension.
âYou have to make sure that you are dealing with someone whose license, accreditation and insurance have all the necessary papers,â Sauve said.
Palm Beach County officials have given companies like Pawsitively Love a grace period to be zoned and then get the required permits.
This deadline is September 1, 2018. After that, these installations will be subject to penalties.