‘I am broken’ Horror as pet puppy dies after just two days with ‘traumatic’ illness

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An Edinburgh woman’s dreams of being a puppy owner were cruelly cut short when her new pet died just two days after she took him home. Nunzia Citro, 33, had “dreamed of having a puppy for years” – and thought she had struck gold when she found ten-week-old Neo, a Shih-poo puppy from a breeder in Ayrshire. After doing a few checks, the waitress and partner decided to go ahead and pick up the pet for £600. But after picking up the young pup, the signs were already there that something had gone very wrong.

Nunzia told Edinburgh Live that Neo was strangely quiet and wasn’t interested in playing, eating or drinking. A vet reassured her over the phone that this could just be the stress of moving home.

However, the sight that met Nunzia when she woke up the next morning suggested something far worse was afoot.

Neo was covered in vomit, while there was diarrhoea “across” the living room. Nunzia added: “It wasn’t normal vomit it was a strange colour and the food I put out the day before had not been touched.”

She added that she knew something was wrong when the puppy had slept soundly through the night without crying or leaving his bed. Rushing him to the vets, Nunzia said “the tragedy” began after that horrific sight.

The vet told Nunzia that Neo’s weight of 750g was low for only ten weeks old, and he was “far too quiet for a puppy”.

She said: “Next they checked his glucose levels and that’s when he said there is something wrong with the puppy. He came back and said the levels are really low which is why he is so weak and can’t do anything.”

The vet told Nunzia that if she hadn’t brought him into the vets, he would’ve died already. She was texting the breeder, who was “really worried” and offered to give her some money for the vet bill.

The breeder added the other puppies were healthy, something later confirmed by an investigation by the SPCA. The vet informed Nunzia that the cost to have him fully checked as well as treatments would run up a cost of around £2,000.

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The situation only worsened, as while they were in the clinic, “the puppy went to the toilet and it was black with worms in it. The vet was gravely worried and said ‘I need to be honest with you guys, it is unlikely the puppy will survive so you have to think about that. I decided to take the puppy home overnight to give him one night of love and would take him back in the mornings and tried to give him food and drink.

“I prayed for him and tried to give him more food and drink but he looked dead with his eyes open.”

The next day, the vet delivered the news she had been dreading – Neo needed to be put down.

She said she was “heartbroken”, adding: “I have been dreaming of getting a puppy for years and look what has happened. I have never had a worst day in my entire life. I am broken. Now I will keep fundraising to see if I could get some money back from people who will understand my pain and to save towards a new puppy in the future.”

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She is running a fundraiser to pay for the pet costs, which reached £600 for Neo’s care and another £400 to put him down.

Nunzia said: “Money will not bring my Neo back – never. But it would be nice to receive some support. Unfortunately my dream of adopting a puppy has ended being hugely traumatic. Neo, I have seen your sweet eyes for 48 hours only, but I will love you forever.”

Scottish SPCA chief inspector Laura McIntyre said: “We launched an investigation after we received a report of a poor pup passing away shortly after their owner had purchased them. As part of our investigation, we spoke at length with the owner, the vet which they’d taken the dog to, and the breeder they bought the pup from.

“The vet advised the pup had worms but at the point we were investigating, the body had been disposed of and we had no way of carrying out a post-mortem to establish if the pup had any illnesses or diseases. We also viewed the breeder’s premises and the two remaining pups from the litter.

“Both the pups were in good condition, and we provided the breeder with detailed advice on taking appropriate care of pups. Our investigation established that this pup was one of a litter of 8 and all other pups from the litter appear to have had no issues.”



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