Woman's dog fatally mauled at pet sitter's home

Woman’s senior dog fatally mauled at pet sitter’s home

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A Colorado woman’s dog was fatally mauled at her pet-sitter’s home. According to ABC Action News, the nearly 10-year-old dog named Wally was being cared for by someone through Rover.com, a network of pet sitters and dog walkers.

What happened to Wally?

Elaine Conoly left her Dachshund with the pet-sitter over the Fourth of July holiday. Conoly had used the same sitter in the past without incident. This time, however, was tragically different. Conoly said that she received a message from the person caring for her dog stating that her dog was dead – she recounted what was said, “Sorry, a mastiff completely mauled your dog and killed him instantly.”

On her social media account, she wrote:

“As emotionally exhausting as its been to constantly relive this tragedy and share anything personal on social media, it is my responsibility to help other animal lovers make the best possible choices for their furry loved ones. Yes, a Rover dog sitter killed my dog while I was out of town. Yes, all that Rover, a huge company self-labelled “The Dog People” and full of false guarantees, had to say can be summed up as “oops sorry.'”

Recourse for the death?

According to Conoly, she hasn’t heard from the pet-sitter since her dog was mauled by the 150-pound dog, who she learned after-the-fact had been staying at the same person’s home while Wally was there. According to the news agency, Conoly is hiring an attorney and she intends to press charges.

A public relations spokesman for Rover issued a statement about Wally’s death:

As dog owners ourselves, we are distraught by Wally’s passing and join his family in their grief during this heart-wrenching time. Upon learning of the incident, our trust and safety team immediately opened an investigation and we remain committed to providing support to the Conoly family. We have deactivated this particular sitter from our platform.”

– Dave Rosenbaum

More news and updates on the National Animal News Facebook page.

Family surrendered their old dog because they didn’t want to deal with him on the 4th – read more here.

Old dog surrendered

Viral video shows dog chasing car after being dumped – watch here.

Dog chased car after being dumped

Our site is supported by stories from Shared.com

Dying man’s wish to find a home for his beloved dogs – read the story here.

Woman horrified by house infestation after walking in the park with her dog – read more here.

16 replies
  1. Barbara Garabedian says:

    How horrible poor doggie ???? what evil creeps did this to doggie I pray they get killed & die god bless doggie ???? bg

  2. Jan Barnes says:

    Sue the c .., out of this F ..,,
    moron BITCH! If this precious dog had been mine, I would be in jail already!

  3. Barkley's Mom says:

    It is beginning to look like there is NO safe place to leave your pets should the need to arise. I can’t imagine the horror getting a message like this and “Sorry, a mastiff completely mauled your dog and killed him instantly.” certainly doesn’t cut it! The lack of empathy from the care giver is mind boggling! Someone who takes on the responsibility of caring for someone’s pet kid should at least “sound” like they cared they allowed their pet to be killed! Elaine Conoly left her precious baby in this POS’s care and probably was paying a good fee for them to keep Wally safe. I would be hiring a lawyer too, there needs to be some justice for Wally and this sitter losing their job certainly isn’t enough! Rest in peace Wally and my sincere condolences to Ms. Conoly, I can’t imagine what she is going through.

  4. Nadya Rossi says:

    SUE, SUE, SUE, SUE the irresponsible, coldhearted or Twitter! SUE the rotten company, as well! Poor sweet little dachshund. You didn’t deserve this. Hoping the owner never adopts another animal.

  5. Marni Montanez says:

    If dogs don’t live together, then big dogs and little dogs should always be separated. If they don’t know each other anything could happen. This is so wrong. How dare Rover make Elaine pay anyway.

  6. Red says:

    We are so petrified to leave our fur baby anywhere…we do not travel together. My husband travels and I travel but not together!! If we can not take our little fur kid…we take separate trips. Not worth all the crap we read about pets being hurt and killed!! Hope the lousy excuse of a pet sitter somehow is reprimanded for NOT watching this little dog with the big dog!

  7. Adrienne says:

    She needs to sue this company and even personally this lady for the casual way she stated how her dog died. No empathy or being upset, just like “oops, look what happened, sorry”.
    There are lawyers who will take this case and I would imagine the sitter would be under the company being sued, but not sure how that would be done. Save other owners a tragedy like this would be worth reliving what happened to her dog.RIP little guy.

  8. pennysdachshund says:

    OMG !!! It would have taken a Swat Team to Haul Me Out of there after I found out about this from that Moronic bitch!!! First of All Dachshunds for the Most Part think of themselves as Great Danes!!! They are Kings and Queens of Dog Hierarchy! My husband and I only go on day trips, have air -conditioning in the kennel and a Hot Dawg forced gas shop ceiling heater for days when we make a day trip in the winter… the dogs we have are ALL very considerate of each other and some of them have lived together over 15 years!!! This story of that “little man dachshund” being mauled in such a horrific fashion is overwhelming … His family must be in a state of Shock and DAMN RIGHT A LAWYER would be first Order in OUR FAMILY TOO!! It won’t bring WALLY BACK , but will damn well put a STOP to another little dog suffering like this… Sorry My ASS is Not Good Enough… This was pure Stupidity!!

  9. J. Martin says:

    How tragic 🙁 I would probably be inclined to sue her as well. She (the sitter) should have made sure that these two completely different style dogs were kept separate. Making sure each pet in her care is safe!!!

  10. Roger Hawcroft says:

    This is a sad and heart-rending tragedy. As a lover of all animals and someone who has had dog companions all my life as well as working and training them for around 40 years, I can empathise with the grief of Elaine Conoly.

    The way in which she is reported to have been advised of the tragedy and the apparent lack of empathy or support from either the caregiver or the company is disturbing, to say the least. It certainly would not encourage anyone else to put an animal into their care.

    However, whilst I can understand the horror and outrage of those reading this, there is little detail in this third-hand account and epithets and abuse will neither bring back the dog nor comfort Ms. Conoly.

    I would suggest that a more useful channel through which to release this anger would be to work together towards changing whatever laws exist, if any, or putting in place legislation to ensure that carers and businesses that employ or recommend animal carers and facilities are required to meet an appropriate set of standards and are vetted to see that they meet those standards.

    I also suggest that this case be taken as a warning to anyone who needs or wishes to leave their companion in the care of another, whether that be an individual or an organisation, to visit the intended temporary home for the animal and establish what facilities there are, whether appropriate precautions are taken to ensure that animals cannot damage or assault one another, that they are properly fed and exercised, that veterinary care is on call in case of illness or injury, and that anyone engaged in direct contact and care of the animal(s) is appropriately trained and experienced.

    I know that some who read this may misconstrue my words as some form of appeasement for those involved. It is not so. It hurts me, as an animal and dog lover, as much as anyone else, to hear of cruelty, negligence or even accidental injury or death to an animal. At the same time, I don’t believe that it is productive to jump to judgment, particularly when we have only indirect accounts of an event and no detail of all the circumstances. I also believe that, as much as it is common for human beings to react to tragedy with immediacy, rather than considered thought, it is only by looking at the total context of an event and the contributing factors that we can potentially produce some good from a horrible and enormously sad situation.

  11. Melissa Gurley says:

    Someone would pay for this if it was my dog they weren’t doing their job and should of never had a large dog like that even near this poor little pup I have friends that come to my home and pay them I would not and have not ever used a service like this I feel so heart broken for your dog and you thou it must be hard to tell your story thank you for making people aware of what happens with these so called services

  12. Gizmos Mommy says:

    Makes me want to open a pet sitting business where I could care for pets in their own home. I don’t have anyone to watch my pets either since I moved. But that’s OK. They mean more to me than anyone. I’d be doing that fuckin idiot’s business even though nothing can bring back her baby. My heart goes out to her.

  13. Star Shelley says:

    My lord what was this sitter thinking? Did she take the dog out for walk? Did she not do something to protect her dog. Was the other dog Lose?? I just don’t get it.

  14. Nancy Raymond says:

    Caregiver??? Hardly – what rock did Rover find this idiot under?? I truly doubt that Wally was killed ‘instantly’ as this so called ‘sitter’ claimed. I bet she wasn’t even home when this happened – she is covering up for her total lack of responsibility for Wally’s death. If it were my dog, she’d be in the morgue and I’d be in jail. PLEASE sue both this lying sitter and Rover – they need to step up their background checks since this horrific instance could be their undoing. No way would I let them near my dog – they are just as responsible as this piss poor example of a dog sitter. My deepest condolences to Elaine Conoly for Wally’s untimely death – my heart breaks for you.


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