A closed Manhattan pet store is responsible for the alleged trafficking in sick puppies, a judge said Thursday.
The Consumer Affairs Department in May asked a judge to impose fines on the Chelsea Kennel Club and its then owner Yardena Derraugh, accusing them of regularly selling sick dogs and tampering with dog veterinary records.
Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Melissa Crane last week issued a default judgment against Derraugh and the company holding them responsible for the claims, after they failed to respond or appear in the trial.
Crane said in his ruling that the DCA sufficiently proved “that the defendants violated New York consumer protection law through persistent deceptive behavior when they sold unhealthy dogs raised in puppy mills to consumers.”
The judge set a hearing date for April to determine damages in the case.
âWhile we know that nothing can make up for customers who have been deceived or improve sick puppies, we firmly believed that the company and the owner should always be held accountable for their cruel practices,â said the commissioner of the DCA, Lorelei Salas, in a statement.
The Humane Society first exposed the pet store – which was located on Seventh Avenue near 22nd Street – in 2017 after conducting a two-month covert investigation that uncovered the dire conditions.
In July, Attorney General Letitia James also filed a complaint against Derraugh and the company.
Derraugh did not immediately return requests for comment.