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Marysville Family Discovered Vet Gave Sick Pet Away Instead Of Euthanizing

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Anjali Hemphill joined CBS 13 in June 2012 and she's happy to make the...
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MARYSVILLE (CBS13) – A Marysville family made the difficult decision to put down their sick dog, but months later they discovered their dead dog was very much alive.

The family thought euthanizing dog Kneesa was the only way to get rid of her pain. Months later, when Kneesa’s groomer recognized her with a different owner, the family knew something had gone wrong.

“It was just a shocking cover up,” said Ericka Pelechowicz.

The 5-year-old Japanese Chin is happy to be back with the family that raised her from a puppy.

“She was in so much pain. If you touched her, she just cried,” said Pelechowicz.

She got separated from them last year when she got very sick one day and was taken to Feather River Veterinary Clinic in Marysville.

The family says the vet told them Kneesa needed treatment that was more than they could afford. So they had to make a tough decision and put Kneesa down.

“We paid for what we could afford that day, and with the test results, and what they wanted and no guarantee she would be OK,” said Pelechowicz.

About three months went by when Ericka says she got a call from Kneesa’s groomer, saying she had a new owner.

Ericka went to pick her up and then called the vet clinic.

“They said, ‘no, we show in our system that she’s deceased,’ but I had her in my arms. So that wasn’t true,” said Pelechowicz.

The family says the vet eventually told them that the family abandoned the dog at their clinic, and they didn’t leave the correct phone number to be contacted. So Kneesa was given away.

But the family says they received a sympathy card from the clinic several days after Kneesa allegedly was put down.

“To me, that’s not an excuse in this day and age,” said Pelechowicz.

The new owner did give Kneesa back, but they say this experience has been a nightmare.

“It’s very confusing and shocking to us, but we’re thankful she’s here today. I’m not saying he’s a bad vet; I’m saying something went very wrong in his office that day and it can’t happen again. It just can’t; it’s too serious,” said Pelechowicz.

It’s still unclear if Kneesa ever went through that surgery which the vet said she needed, but ever since she’s been back home, she’s been nothing but healthy.

CBS13 reached out to the veterinary’s clinic several times but our calls were not returned.

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