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Pet Groomer Posing As Vet Arrested After Botched Surgery On Pregnant Chihuahua

A 61-year-old pet groomer was arrested for posing as a veterinarian and performing surgery on a pregnant dog that later died.

Photo shows the Chihuahua named Sugar, undated. The pregnant dog died after being operated on May 18, 2023, allegedly by Osvaldo Sanchez. (Collier County Sheriff’s Office/Newsflash).

Accused Osvaldo Sanchez – from the US State of Florida – was charged with animal abuse and practising veterinary medicine without a license.

He was taken into custody by officers with the Collier County Sheriff’s Office on 11th August following an investigation by the Animal Cruelty Investigations Alliance.

Detectives were alerted after a six-year-old, six-pound Chihuahua named Sugar died following an illicit surgery performed by Sanchez on May 18th, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The pup’s owners took it to Sanchez after he had previously been introduced to them as a vet.

He performed a C-section and a spay procedure on the tiny Chihuahua that appeared to be having difficulty delivering her puppies.

He removed a stillborn puppy during the procedure that he performed in his mobile office, a converted ambulance.

Sanchez later charged the owners USD 600 (GBP 473) for the surgery that left Sugar with a severe infection.

The dog reportedly had to spend the following week in the care of a licensed veterinary clinic.

An ultrasound – carried out on 25th May – revealed Sugar’s surgical incision was closed with string or thread and not the standard suture material.

Doctors told her owners this was what likely led to the bad infection.

Photo shows Osvaldo Sanchez, undated. The man from Florida, 61, was arrested after allegedly posing as a veterinarian, performing a surgery on a pregnant dog on May 18, 2023, that later died. (Collier County Sheriff’s Office/Newsflash).

A few hours later, Sugar died from multiple complications from the surgery.

A doctor at the emergency pet hospital told detectives that Sugar would have survived if a qualified vet performed the C-section, a surgery that is quite common with pregnant dogs.

Police then arrested Sanchez, who later turned out to be a pet groomer and was not licensed as a vet.

Sheriff Kevin Rambosk praised detectives for their diligence and urged the public to do their research and only entrust their pet to a licensed veterinarian.

He said in a statement obtained by Newsflash: “Pets’ lives are at risk if unlicensed individuals perform surgery, prescribe medication and claim to provide needed care.

“Such individuals who believe they can operate outside the law will be arrested and held accountable – our dedicated detectives will see to it.”

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