Itsy Puppy sold me a sick puppy which died 4 days later

My girlfriend and I wanted a micro Pomeranian, so after looking online at various breeders I contacted Itsy Puppy in late October. I somehow felt comfortable about them being in California (as I am), and largely their reviews were good (though there were a couple problematic ones, I gave them the benefit of the doubt). Rachel was kind and communicative as we chose our puppy, and paid half the $5,500 as a deposit. We made arrangements for her to deliver the puppy to my home in Beverly Hills shortly before Thanksgiving. On November 22 (a Saturday), Rachel delivered the puppy which my girlfriend named “Pebbles.” She was adorable. I paid the balance remaining to Rachel. Interestingly, Rachel was not able to give me any veterinary records, just basically told me that she had gotten her shots and “passed.” She had also told me (by email) that Pebbles weighed 1.67 pounds just 5 days earlier, on the 17th.

We took care of Pebbles exactly as instructed, feeding her the recommended Royal Canin X-Small dog food, etc. We had made an appointment with the vet in advance for that Monday, the 24th. Unfortunately, Pebbles wasn’t pooping and her abdomen was fairly distended all weekend, so we couldn’t bring a stool specimen to the vet. Pebbles weighed in at 2.2 pounds that day, and her stomach was markedly distended.

The next day we dropped off a fecal sample, and she tested positive for two gastrointestinal infections, Giardia and Coccidia. These are infections puppies can get from ingesting *** from other dogs. We live in a clean home without any other pets, and it is clear she came to us already infected. The next day, Wednesday, we took her to the vet to get two medications for these infections. That afternoon, while feeding her, my girlfriend noticed Pebbles start to foam at the mouth and stop breathing. She yelled for my help. I’m a surgeon (not a vet). I swept Pebble’s mouth to clear it of any food, tried a version of the Heimlich maneuver, then began CPR as we rushed her to the car. I drove to the hospital as my girlfriend continued CPR but Pebbles died in her arms, and Pebbles was pronounced dead at Beverly Hills Small Animal Hospital about 10 minutes later. It was heartbreaking for us to have her for only four days and for this to happen. We’re not sure if she choked, or had a seizure. But she died.

We contacted Rachel and told her what happened… and that Pebbles was not fully healthy when delivered, she had an obvious gastrointestinal problem, was “backed up,” (to the point of weighing over half a pound more within days), and had two documented GI infections that pre-existed prior to her delivery. Our contract with Rachel stated that the puppy to the best of her knowledge and effort is in good health and free of communicable diseases at the time of sale. I can only imagine that if in fact Pebbles saw a vet prior to delivery to us, they did not test for these infections. I can also imagine that many of the puppies that Rachel is selling may well be infected with these same organisms.

We asked for Rachel to replace the puppy, and she offered to replace her for $1,500 (for stud breeder fees). She acknowledged this was a lot of money in light of us having already paid $5,500 (plus lots of vet and animal hospital bills), and she said she would see what she could do to reduce it. After weeks of hearing nothing, I emailed her and she responded that she could replace Pebbles for $3,000. I told her this was not acceptable, and at this point I wanted my money back. Rachel then had the incredible nerve to imply that Pebble’s death was somehow related to my care of her… and that she was fed in a way not recommended (completely untrue).

The day after we got her (the morning of our visit to the vet), Pebbles had jumped into my pool under the watchful eye of my surprised girlfriend, who immediately scooped her out within seconds. Pebbles never submerged and was fine from that incident. Rachel had the nerve in her final email to also imply that Pebbles was “dropped into the pool.” She has NO IDEA how much Pebbles was loved and how well taken care of she was. Rachel’s final comment was the insulting “we [are] no longer comfortable with placing one of our loved ones under your care after much thought and consideration of what has happened to Pebbles.”

Maybe Rachel should give some thought and consideration into her breeding practices and the cleanliness of her kennels. Sanitation is obviously not a high priority for her. Sounds to me like Itsy Puppy is a breeding ground for protozoa and parasites, and Rachel runs a true puppy mill. I am truly suspect of what if any veterinary testing is done on their puppies. No wonder when I first called back in October and wanted to visit to see what puppies were available I was told “sorry, we don’t allow on-site visits.”

I can only recommend that anyone looking for puppies avoid Itsy Puppy like the plague. When money is involved, Rachel’s true colors came out loud and clear. She could care less about her dogs, their health, and what happens to them. She has incredibly little compassion, and once again my faith in people “doing the right thing” withers.

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  • What I liked
      No items
  • What I disliked
    • Lack of compassion
    • Untrustworthy
    • Failure to honor contract

Reason of review:
Bad quality
Preferred solution:
Full refund
Monetary loss:
Product or service
Micro Pomeranian
Review category
Pet Stores
review #609075

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Jun 17 #1174464

Take her to court to recover her initial cost + vet bills. Have her investigated and shut down.

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Jan 06 #1090071

Money well wasted. Rescue a dog from the pound. Micro breeds from inhumane breeding farms are an abomination. Many don't survive infancy and the businesses are unregulated so elite shoppers are uninformed when they purchase accessories they can feed but know nothing about. What a waste of life and money.

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Jan 05 #1089482

Itsy Puppy is a middleman puppy operation that buys puppies from all over the US and sells them for a profit. When so many puppies are housed together often puppies infect one another.
You are better off taking your chances from Craigslist for a lower price.
Operations like this should be fined with the owners jailed.
I know that Lambriar Kennels is a middleman operation that buys puppies from families and then sells them to pet stores. Probably...this is where this itsy puppy operation gets its puppies. These prices are outrageous.
I recently rescued a puppy and he is the most adorable 9 month old ever. Do not buy from operations like this.

0 0 Reply

Nov 09, 2015 #1060638

“sorry, we don’t allow on-site visits.”
Should have been a major red flag.

0 0 Reply

Mar 29, 2015 #965275

As a breeder family of teacup puppies, we’ve done business with many different kinds of people, and we thank you for your review of us. We enjoyed the process of helping you choose a puppy of ours and we believe that you and your girlfriend’s emotions (whom we see also wrote a review of us below yours) went from being happy to unhappy because we decided against giving you a replacement dog for Pebbles after the sad and unfortunate circumstances that happened after we delivered the puppy in person.
However, as there are two sides to every coin, we’ve decided that after much thought to write a public comment as to what happened in our perspective and why we came to the decision not to replace her although we do believe you both to have given Pebbles a lot of love during the four days you had her. We plead you to read with an open heart and also understand where we are coming from.
First of all, your review explains that you fed Pebbles as instructed from our preparation email. However, when we looked at the medical reports after the choking incident happened, your vet had written under her current diet that you and your girlfriend had been feeding Pebbles a diet consisting of chicken, rice, and olive oil as well as our recommended dry kibbles. Chicken in sizes unknown to us certainly are not recommended to be fed to a younger puppy that has not had her teeth fully developed at 13 weeks old. Additionally, the chicken diet you wanted to feed Pebbles is usually to entice a
... Show more

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Mar 16, 2015 #959461

Lesson be learned - DON'T DEAL WITH *** BREEDERS! They will charge you out the *** and never help you again. They think they are "God." They demand that the buyer do what THEY say because they are know-it-all. Which is completely untrue. They are just lazy *** who don't know how to care for dogs and are just in it for the $, so they gather up a male and a female dog and have them breed and then they come up with outrageous prices to charge. Shelters are the way to go! Already neutered or spayed pets for $50 adoption fees. All paperwork included. Mostly healthy with maybe a slight case of URI here or there.

4 1 Reply

Mar 17, 2015 #959885 Beverly Hills, California

True... however if you want a specialty dog like a micro-Pomeranian you simply can't find one at a shelter, unfortunately... otherwise I would absolutely have gone that route.

2 1 Reply

Jan 13 #1093677

Don't bu a *** show-off accessory dog. GOD, I hate people like you.

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