Dog boarder charged after 2 dogs in her care died, sheriff says

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – A North Carolina woman who runs a dog walking and boarding business is facing animal cruelty charges after the deaths of two dogs in her care, according to the office of the sheriff.

The New Hanover Sheriff’s Office Animal Services Unit has charged Pamala Lynn Rodriguez with two counts of criminal animal cruelty, WECT reports.

Rodriguez had been invited to board two German Shepherds, Nala and Jager, through Rover.com, a website where pet owners can connect with pet sitters and dog walkers, according to a statement. release from the sheriff’s office.

The New Hanover Sheriff’s Office Animal Services Unit has charged Pamala Lynn Rodriguez with two counts of criminal animal cruelty.(NHCSO)

After five days of boarding with the dogs, Rodriguez said she woke up to find Nala dead, the statement said. Later that day, she said Jagar was lethargic, so she took him to the emergency vet, where he died.

“Before you let anyone watch your pets, watch your pets, make sure you get references and know they are reliable and you can trust them,” the New County Sheriff said. Hanover, Ed McMahon.

Necropsies were performed on both dogs. The sheriff’s office says they died due to extreme dehydration and starvation.

German Shepherds Nala and Jager died in Rodriguez's care, according to the Sheriff's Office...
German Shepherds Nala and Jager died in Rodriguez’s care, according to the sheriff’s office. Necropsies indicated that they died due to extreme dehydration and starvation.(NHCSO)

Animal Services deputies executed a search warrant at Rodriguez’s home. According to the press release, it was “extremely dirty, over 85 degrees without a fan, and smelled like urine.” Several dogs were found in undersized crates and none of them had food or water.

“It was horrible what we found in there, and we ended up getting 16 more animals from her and caring for them, bringing them back to the owners,” McMahon said.

The sheriff’s office says it’s an ongoing investigation.

“We are simply not going to tolerate cruelty to our animal passengers in this county,” McMahon said.

Rodriguez was booked on a secure bond of $2,100.

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Jennifer R. Strohm