Puppy dies after alleged strangulation at Burien animal grooming facility


Print This Post  Email This Post

By Jack Mayne

A family has reported to Burien CARES that their silky terrier puppy had to be euthanized on Oct. 14, after being groomed at Pretty Paws at 123 SW 158th Street in Burien.

Burien resident Kim Malmquist said that the four and a half month old dog, named Yoshi, was taken to Pretty Paws at 9:30 a.m. that day, and was told the grooming should not take a long time and that the facility would call her when he was ready to go home.

“By noon I hadn’t heard anything, so I called,” Malmquist said in her report to CARES that she made available to The B-Town Blog.

“The owner answered and said he was fine and that ‘it’s a process.’ She said she would call when he was ready.”

Breathing difficulties
“About 2:30 p.m. she called me and said that I needed to come get my puppy because he was having breathing difficulties,” Malmquist said. “My husband and I rushed there to get him.

“When we walked in, he was sitting on the floor struggling to breathe and didn’t seem to notice that we were there when I called his name. She said owner Kathy Graf then shouted his name. He still sat on the floor struggling to breathe.

Graf told the Malmquists she “didn’t know what happened and they had the muzzle on because he was biting, but for only 10 seconds or so before they noticed the breathing problems.”

While she was telling me about him biting and not cooperating, “I yelled at her to give me my dog so we can rush him to the vet next door.”

“We immediately left and rushed Yoshi to the vet across the street, Burien VCA,” Malmquist said. “They immediately took Yoshi back and did an exam. They took an x-ray, where they found fluid in his lungs.”

The Burien vet gave Yoshi a shot to help him breathe, Malmquist said, and drove him to Renton so he could be put on oxygen.

“We took him to Blue Pearl in Renton where they also immediately took Yoshi back to check him out,” Malmquist told CARES. “They told us that he needed to be on oxygen. They said with what they saw, time and oxygen usually helps. In Yoshi’s case, it did not. They tried upping the amount of oxygen through the night, but there was no change in his condition.

“The next morning, they called us to tell us that they were going to up the oxygen one more time and if that didn’t work, then Yoshi would be put on a ventilator. The oxygen didn’t work, so they tried the ventilator. They called us again about a half hour later saying it was worse than they thought. When they put the tube down, a bunch of bloody liquid came up. The vet said he talked to two other vets that were more of experts in this situation and that Yoshi only had about a 10 to 20 percent chance of survival.

“We then chose to euthanize him.”

She said the cause of the dog’s death “was a strangulation episode that resulted in a pulmonary edema from which he could not recover.”

She said Yoshi was a “perfectly healthy puppy when he went in to Pretty Paws. He was updated on all his shots.”

“The following Wednesday, I brought a letter and documents to Pretty Paws and gave them to the owner, Kathy Graf. The letter stated what the vet had said was the cause of death and that they were responsible. We asked her to pay all Yoshi’s expenses, including his initial cost of 600.00.

“We have heard nothing from her, and not once did she call us after the incident to ask about Yoshi.”

The B-Town Blog attempted to reach Graf multiple times, but she did not respond to any of our requests.

CARES Director Debra George says the agency is continuing an investigation.

UPDATE: A GoFundMe page has been created, in case Yoshi’s owners “…might have to retain our own attorney. We need help paying fees. If we don’t use an attorney, everyone will get a refund”:

https://www.gofundme.com/justice-for-yoshi

Print This Post  Email This Post

Comments are closed.