Petition to shut dog centre gains hundreds of signatures overnight despite RSPCA green light

Campaigners have launched a petition to close a dog day care centre after videos of staff abusing pets went viral.

Thursday, 26th July 2018, 4:44 pm
Updated Thursday, 26th July 2018, 5:02 pm
The Doggy Den

In the videos one member of staff can be seen kicking a dog and another throwing a toy at a dog's head.

Nearly 350 people signed the petition in less than 24 hours to shut down The Doggy Den, on Little London Road.

Tom Greatorex, owner of The Doggy Den

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Jodie Stevenson, who launched the petition, claimed the owner was unfit to run the site and listed a number of accusations including being under qualified, not properly training staff and not reviewing security CCTV cameras regularly.

She added: “Recent allegations and video evidence have been brought to light that show the proprietor namely Tom Greatorex has been complicit in the endangerment of dogs under his care."

But Mr Greatorex, owner who said he has 10 years experience in dog care, refutes some of the claims and said the videos were nearly two years old and were maliciously posted by a former employee who had been sacked for kicking a dog.

He added that the employees seen abusing animals in the videos no longer work for the business.

Following the recent furore the RSPCA undertook an inspection and said they have ‘no concerns’ about the business as the incidents were historic.

A spokesperson for the RSPCA said: “We are so grateful to people who report suspected animal suffering to us and we would like to reassure people we will always look into and, if necessary, investigate any complaints made to us about animal welfare.

“We are aware of these videos which we understand are all historic, relating to incidents that took place over a year ago and which were resolved at the time.

“We have visited the establishment and we have no concerns regarding the current standards and activities at the facility, the owner/manager having provided a full account of those historic incidents.”

In a statement released on the Doggy Den’s Facebook page the company said as a result of the row additional safeguards had been put in place ‘with immediate effect’ including retraining staff, upgrading CCTV cameras and introducing new reporting arrangements.