Gruesome discovery: 4 dead dogs, several sick animals found at suburban animal hospital

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Authorities want to know what was going on at a south suburban animal hospital where four dogs were found dead and several others sick and emaciated.

The Cook County Sheriff's Department is handling the investigation but this morning officers with Dolton code enforcement swarmed the Dolton Animal Hospital in the 15000 block of Lincoln Avenue to continue their part of the investigation.

Meanwhile, current and former clients have been showing up, sharing horror stories.

"I called everybody and nobody paid me any attention," former client Tina Robinson said this morning.

Robinson claims her 12-year-old Rottweiler, Duke, died at the hands of the people at the Dolton Animal Hospital two months ago. She says she boarded him, along with her two other dogs, back in July while she went out of town.

Robinson says the woman who owns the clinic avoided her when she returned from vacation. "She said that she wasn't feeling well," Robinson told reporters. "We came back the next day and she didn't answer. The third day when we came back to get the dog on Monday, she told me my dog had a heart attack. And I just can't believe -- the dog was in good shape."

She now wonders if Duke is among the four dead dogs found yesterday when a Dolton police officer stopped by to drop off a stray dog, as contracted by the city.

Ten other animals -- nine dogs and a cat -- were also found severely malnourished, with no food or water.

"There was a fair amount of neglect going on in this facility," Deputy Chief Michael Anton of the Cook County Sheriff's Department said. "There's no doubt of that."

Veterinarian Dr. Amerdeep Sangha was at the clinic today. He said he had not heard anything from the Sheriff's Department about the investigation.

As for the animals that were found, Dr. Sangha told WGN, "We try to do the best we can. And sometimes some of those stray pets that police bring are in real bad shape already." He had no other comment.

Sheriff's deputies interviewed a female employee last night but no charges have been filed yet. The investigation is ongoing.

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13 comments

  • Erica Woods

    Disgusting! I’m so tired of the horror stories involving animals, they make me wanna punish people vigilante style. People need to voice their opinions about animal abuse in this country, just thinking it’s wrong, is NOT enough.

  • Lucinda

    I realize stories like these carry a great deal of emotion and knee jerk reaction, but that being said, would one not assume you would find sick animals at an animal hospital, just as you would find sick humans at a regular hospital? This story is lacking quite a few details, and with that, stirs a lot of pots. I worked for an animal hospital many years ago, and although everyone’s protocol may be different, certain things remain constant.
    1) it was a rather rare occasion that we didn’t have dead animals on the property. Unfortunately, animals die and they do need to be disposed of. Im certain many people would be horrified to know that their beloved pet was placed into a garbage bag and stored in a giant freezer awaiting pick up, but that is the truth.
    2) an animal hospital is the place to take sick animals, so why is that such a surprise?
    3) the dogs and cats at our hospital were fed twice a day without fail. The dogs were fed out of stainless steel bowls that were removed when the cages were cleaned, washed and sterilized. The cats were fed from small cardboard disposable trays. Yes, there was absolutely a time period during the day when there was not food in front of them. But it does not mean they were being starved or neglected.
    4) depending on illness, medication, surgery or diet restrictions, some animals CAN NOT have food and water in front of them all of the time. For the article to state they were ALL without food and water including the boarded animals, tend to lead to a bigger issue, but no need to sensationalize without all of the facts in place.
    By no means am I siding with this hospital, nor do I have any facts in hand, just stating what i know from experience. Its unfortunate that situations like this happen and go for so long being unchecked. If this place was being used by the city to shelter stray pets, the city should also be held accountable for the needs not being met. More facts needed.

    • Duhhhhh

      Did you miss the part where the women says she dropped off her healthy dog simply for baording it while on a trip??? and it died there? and the women dodged her for 3 days then finally told her the dog had a heart attack? bit suspicious dontcha think? Seems to be a bit more going on if you use your common sense

  • zonex74

    Lucinda, good post. We’ll see what details come about. All I know is I am definitely concerned because I have and still do take my dog to that EXACT location. The lady who normally works there is really nice, but I once questioned the treatment of my dog as I noticed a small patch of hair missing from around his neck after I boarded my dog there a wk. He was also sick. I didn’t take him back there for some months after that until just recently for a couple of days. So when u see this report, natural concern comes to mind.

  • Jo Pitt

    Debbie, the article says it was Code Enforcement who did the initial inspection, so they are only permitted to inspect a building and surrounding property for violations of zoning ordinances. That’s why further inspection and investigation is necessary.