A Pittsburgh pet store has been dealing with public criticism ever since a Facebook post from an ex-employee making allegations of puppy abuse more than a year ago.
The former employee of the pet store is named Katelyn Cerciello. She explained in her post that she quit working at the Robinson Petland after a just month because she “couldn't watch the owner, refuse vet care for sick puppies anymore, ship them back to the Hunte Corporation to be euthanized, or in general sell puppy-mill puppies for thousands of dollars to the unknowing public.”
In an interview with a local Pittsburgh TV station, Cerciello claimed: “You could tell they were sick. Nine-week-old puppies should be bouncing around playing, but they'd be lying on the floor.”
Cerciello also alleges that the store’s owner was not willing to make any changes.
“(I) kept telling him something needs to be done and he wouldn't do anything,” Cerciello stated.
The manager of the store commented in an interview that she was aware of the Facebook post and pics, but said they were not true. She argued that the pics were probably snapped during a morning cleaning.
Manager Jo Ann Williams also noted the store is up-to-date with all documentation with the American Kennel Club as well as the county dog warden.
A local TV station was also given a tour of the pet store, but Williams would not comment further on the allegations by Cerciello.
Based on the footage taken by the television station, the inside of the store was clean and the dogs and other pets living there seemed healthy.
On the other hand, the TV station did note that after the segment aired, several customers contacted the station claiming they had purchased sick puppies from Petland in the past.
Williams stated that she had no information about complaints of sick pets bought from the store.
The manager went on to say she was frustrated by these untrue and unproven allegations. She was especially worried about the damage to the store’s reputation and threats she and other employees have received since Cerciello’s social media post.