Petco to pay $1.75 million to settle case alleging neglect

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, June 2010:
SAN DIEGO–Petco Animal Supplies Inc. on June 2, 2010 agreed
to pay $1.75 million to settle a lawsuit alleging a persistent
pattern of animal neglect and overcharging customers, brought by the
city of San Diego and the counties of San Mateo, Marin, San Diego,
Los Angeles and Santa Barbara.
Petco is a 1,000-store national chain, but all of the
plaintiffs are on California.

Petco agreed in May 2004 to settlements totaling $914,254 in
a similar case brought by the same counties, plus the city of San
Francisco. “Under terms of the new settlement,” reported San
Francisco Chronicle staff writer Erin Allday, “Petco must create
programs that include daily inspections of animals and their living
environments, and veterinary care for sick and injured animals.
Petco did not admit any wrongdoing in the settlement. A Petco
spokesman said the changes mentioned in the settlement have already
been instituted.”
“We have definitely seen a pattern develop from Petco with
regards to improper animal care,” responded Marin Humane Society
spokesperson Carrie Harrington, to Rob Rogers of the Marin
Independent Journal.
The cases settled in 2010 began, in part, when despite the
2004 settlement “Investigators from the Marin Humane Society
determined that the county’s Petco stores in Novato and San Rafael
had not been adequately cleaned and maintained,” Rogers recalled.
“In some instances,” Rogers wrote, “sick animals had not been
identified and removed from sales floor habitats.”
PETA announced in February 2008 that after five years under
PETA boycott, Petco had agreed to reduce the animal inventory in
Petco stores by 30% and enforce stricter animal care standards for
animal suppliers. PETA has continued to expose abuses at some
facilities that supply small mammals and birds to Petco. Dogs and
cats available at Petco stores are offered for adoption by local
shelters and rescues.

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