MECHANICSBURG, Pa. — Nuggie, a 16-week-old Golden Doodle, was dropped off at Noah’s Pet Hotel’s Mechanicsburg location on Aug. 5 while his owners went on vacation in North Carolina.
Two days later, owner Lauren Moss received the distressing news: Nuggie had been attacked by another dog at the kennel.
Moss said a Noah’s Pet Hotel employee told her Nuggie had been found when the kennel opened around 6:30 a.m. with his two front legs stuck under the gap of his indoor enclosure, into the enclosure of another dog.
“Due to a gap in the inside enclosure, Nuggie’s two front feet were able to slide through into the dog’s kennel beside his, where the other dog proceeded to attack Nuggie, which resulted in pretty horrific injuries,” Moss said.
With several severe bite marks on his legs, Nuggie was taken to Shores Veterinary Emergency Center, where he stayed for a week. He spent the next few weeks with a cone and bandages.
Nearly two months later, Moss said Nuggie is mostly healed, though he has scars on his legs and sometimes limps.
Yet Nuggie’s recovery wasn’t the end of the story for Moss. She believed the kennel violated a Pennsylvania statute that requires kennel enclosures to contain dogs’ feet: “The coated metal strand flooring shall be made of mesh construction that does not allow the dog’s feet to pass through any opening in the floor and does not otherwise cause injury to the dog.”
Yet Noah’s passed a March inspection by the Pa. Dog Law Enforcement Office, part of the Department of Agriculture.
Following the incident, the Department of Agriculture said they cited the kennel for violating enclosure standards.
Another inspection on Sept. 2 showed Noah’s was back in compliance.
Noah’s Pet Hotel declined to comment on the situation.
Moss said Noah’s did pay for Nuggie’s veterinary bills, but she felt that wasn’t enough.
“Do I think they wanted it to happen? No,” she said. “But I think they could have taken the steps to try to rectify it with us, at least offer an apology and some empathy there.”
Moss is a legislative assistant for two state representatives—State Rep. Jason Oritay (R-Allegheny/Washington) and State Rep. Natalie Mihalek (R-Washington)—and she said she is working with them on a bill to amend the Pennsylvania Dog Law. She hopes more specific guidelines and harsher penalties will prevent any more dogs from getting hurt.