Screenshot via ABC 6

PetSmart Blamed for the Death of 2 Dogs Who Went in for Grooming

An internal investigation is underway after two dogs have died and another was injured after a routine grooming at a PetSmart in Flemington, New Jersey.

According to, Danielle DiNapoli dropped her English bulldog, Scruffles, off at a PetSmart in Flemington for a routine grooming on Dec. 29. An hour later, the dog was dead.

DiNapoli wasn't told how Scruffles died. A necropsy (canine equivalent to an autopsy) is underway; however, it will take weeks to complete.

DiNapoli created a Facebook page for Scruffles to find some answers and tell her story. The page has over 5,000 likes and is filled with people offering their condolences as well as telling their own PetSmart horror stories.
PetSmart is said to have launched an internal investigation into Scruffles' death and wrote in a statement:

"We are truly saddened by the loss of Scruffles. While a comprehensive internal investigation is still ongoing, our initial findings indicate the associates involved followed all policies and procedures consistent with care and services provided to breeds such as bulldogs."

An investigation by NJ Advance Media found that Scruffles wasn't the only dog to die at the Flemington PetSmart last month.

Tara Fiet and David Bolduc took their dogs to be groomed at the Flemington PetSmart between Dec. 22 and Dec. 29. Fiet's dog died two days after the grooming session, while Bolduc's dog suffered a back injury.

When Fiet heard of Scruffles' death, she reached out to DiNapoli via Facebook.

Fiet said:

"When Danielle posted her story, I messaged her and said, 'My dog went there Friday and died Sunday. Is that a coincidence or could something have happened?'"


Pet groomers are not required to be licensed in New Jersey; however, in 2014, a bill was introduced which would require groomers to pass a licensing exam. The bill never passed, but according to DiNapoli, assemblywoman Valerie Huttle (D-37th) is expected to reintroduce the bill in the spring.

To keep up with this story, you can follow the Justice for Scruffles page on Facebook.

What are your thoughts on this story? Let us know in the comments.

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