Dog owner furious after unknown illness at Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter kills her dog in four days

When she first laid eyes on Ace, she knew it was meant to be.

"He was a happy dog, jumping all over my mom," Laurie Chessar said. "He loved her, so I knew that was the dog that I wanted."

Chessar quickly signed the paperwork to adopt the once stray puppy from the Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter.

"They told me that he would go on Monday to get fixed, and I would be able to pick him up on Tuesday," Chessar said.

But when Chessar came back to pick up Ace, she said something was off.

"Got him home, he wouldn't eat, couldn't get him to drink anything," she said.

Chessar said the shelter told her Ace had kennel cough, but it would clear up in about seven days. She said she only waited four before rushing him to the E.R.

"It was the worst decision of my life," she said while holding back tears. "I had a dog for four days, and they told me that I had to pick between saving the dog that I had for four days or put him in ICU that would cost roughly $3,000."

Chessar put him down and had his body cremated.

The doctor shared a laundry list of 14 things that were wrong with the dog. The visit resulted in hefty bill — nearly $850.

Chessar said she reached out to the shelter to discuss reimbursement, but they told her she was responsible for the costs.

"I was very angry with the shelter that they sold me a sick dog," she said.

News 5 called the shelter about the matter. Personnel there they said they are still cleaning and investigations are still ongoing. They said they haven't figured out how to address the issue yet, but will reach out to Chessar themselves.

The shelter was closed Tuesday and Wednesday for cleaning after five former stray dogs died from an unknown illness.

Chessar said after this, she wants to see change in some of their policies.

"I just want them to change the way that they take in their strays," she said. "I want them to do a better exam on their strays."

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