Lake County dog groomer under investigation

Dog groomer speaks out after being accused of hurting dog

By Erik Sandoval - Reporter

MOUNT DORA, Fla. - The woman at the heart of a controversy surrounding possibly life-threatening wounds found on a Tavares Pomeranian spoke to Local 6 on Wednesday in an effort to set the record straight.

[RELATED: Family wants answers after dog injured]

"Sweetie" was boarded at Rhonda Carr's Pet Chalet in Mount Dora last weekend while the dog's family went to Cocoa Beach for the weekend.

When they got back home, they found black spots oozing with blood and puss, rushed the dog to the veterinarian where she had surgery.

The dog's owner Janise Ellixson told Local 6 her veterinarian believed Sweetie was attacked.

"Animal Control came out today thanks to all of this," Carr said Wednesday.

Carr said she hasn't slept since Ellixson accused her of trying to hide wounds on her dog Sweetie.

"I know he wasn't attacked," she said. "I'm with him every moment when he goes outside."

We sat with Carr and watched Local 6's story, where her customer lays out the accusations.

Carr said the sores that sweetie had on her back were "hot spots" -- infections that are like boyles on humans -- they can fester and burst, and that's what she thinks happened -- not a dog bite.

"If the dog was attacked, would you have told her?" Local 6 asked.

"Absolutely. I tell everybody anything," Carr said.

We also asked Carr about boarding the dogs inside her home instead of at her business. She said "boarding" is something she just does on the side for her customers, but she may be rethinking that.

"I just want Pet Chalet to have a good reputation, because I love my business, I love animals and I take good care of them," Carr said.

Lake County Animal Control is waiting to obtain the veterinarian report on Sweetie's surgery before issuing a final statement.

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