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Mound House woman says to use her as a cautionary tale after her dog died in a boarding facility – KOLO

CARSON CITY, Nev. (KOLO) – A Mound House woman is fighting for accountability after her dog died in a Carson City boarding facility.
One month ago today, Joslynn Dark got a phone call no pet parent wants to hear. Her beloved golden doodle had suddenly passed away after being at Booboo’s Buddies for just a few days.
“I’m wrecked, he was my life,” begins Dark.
Named for his resemblance to instant noodles, Prince Ramen was the light of Joslynn’s life.
“He was smart. People just looked at him and smiled. He was just…goofy,” recalls Joslynn.
Holding back tears, Dark vividly remembers her last moments with her “baby boy.”
“They went through the door and I looked up at the monitor, saw his fluffy tail go across the screen, and that was the last time I saw him alive,” said Dark.
According to Dark, Prince Ramen was healthy when she dropped him off, leaving her confused and desperate for answers. She began to ask questions and what she says she’s found, is neglect. The day before Prince Ramen died, Dark says she called Booboo’s to check in. The staffer told Dark her dog was doing well and was playing with the smaller dogs in the yard. But later, she says, that story seemed to change.
“In the afternoon, trying to make sense of it, I spoke to someone at Booboo’s Buddies. I asked if he was ok. She said, ‘well he didn’t want to drink and also didn’t want to eat. He was also huffing and puffing and panting distressfully all day long and just wanted to lay down.’ All these things are out of character for him, number one. And number two, these were all signs something was not right,” says Dark.
After some more digging, Dark discovered that the staff have zero certifications. They have no way of distinguishing between separation anxiety, and a medical emergency.
“They did say after the fact that half the staff doesn’t know how to do K9 CPR and they’re training the other half,” Dark said.
Booboo’s Buddies, claims that that is incorrect.
“Booboo’s Buddies has been accused of having untrained kids as workers which is incorrect. Booboo’s also has been accused of having a non-operable video system which is also incorrect. When the staff first noticed that Prince Ramen’s actions were not normal from what they had seen since the previous two days at the facility and in the hours before his passing. Upon seeing this the staff immediately called the owner as is our custom and practice when we see something with an animal that may need medical attention. The comments being made there was a conversation with the owner wherein she was told that only half the staff are trained is a conversation that never occurred and it’s false,” said a representative from Booboo’s.
On February 18, Prince Ramen’s symptoms became so severe that he collapsed and the staff brought him to the vet. Booboo’s said he was dead on arrival and, in a statement released to KOLO 8 said “after further examination the veterinarian determined the pet died from bloating.” That same vet confirmed that Prince Ramen was dead on arrival and added she didn’t actually care for the dog, but rather, made an educated guess on his cause of death based off his symptoms.
For Dark, this just solidifies that if her dog’s symptoms were taken seriously, he could’ve gotten help the day before, and lived. Dark is certain her dog died before he was brought to the vet. However, she can’t prove this because the indoor cameras are being “revamped.” Dark was informed the cameras weren’t working before dropping the dog off. She was told that for the two weeks prior to her visit they weren’t working and even now, a month later, they still aren’t.
Booboo’s also spoke out on this saying: “Bloating was been diagnosed by the vet for Prince Ramen’s health issue. Bloating can come on suddenly without any warning and is often fatal. There is nothing that staff could have done while Prince Ramen was in our facility that could prevent this. This could happen anywhere, anytime without warning. To place blame on Booboo’s Buddies is misguided and inappropriate. The claim that a contract as opposed to our standard liability waiver would ensure liability on the part of the kennel is also an incorrect statement. A contract would set out the term for liability which usually requires that negligence or intentional acts are classified as giving rise to liability.”
“I miss him so much, I just miss him so much,” said Dark.
Dark recalls being unable to accept her pet’s death and began begging the vet to bring Prince Ramen back. When the vet stated that wasn’t possible, she became distraught. In this time she was asked if she wanted the dog cremated, to which she agreed. Even now she wonders why no one offered to do a necropsy to be able to definitively show if this was in fact bloat, and how long he may have been suffering from it.
“If they had suggested it, I would have done it in a heartbeat,” said Dark.
Something else that sticks out in Dark’s mind is that the boarding facility never asked her to sign a boarding contract. Just a waiver. These terms are used synonymously but are very different. A waiver releases all liability to the owner where a contract would ensure shared liability.
Sadly, what happened at Booboo’s is all part of a bigger problem. The veterinary board oversees home care workers, veterinary hospitals, veterinarians, and vet techs. There isn’t a single agency that looks over boarding facilities. Dark is now working with animal welfare activists to get legislation passed to have an agency oversee boarding facilities and, to require that staff all have proper training. Because had she known these things before, she is certain her dog would still be alive.
“To a certain extent my neglect of not looking deeper into them caused my dog‘s death. So, please people, just do your research,” said Dark.
Booboo’s full statement reads:
Dark, after seeing Booboo’s statement said she was never given the 15 minutes heads up as she was in Gardnerville at the time of their initial call and provided screenshots showing that Booboo’s called her back after just two minutes.
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