Venice pet salon owner found not guilty of animal abuse charges
SARASOTA COUNTY - "I am beyond words thankful that it’s over,” said Phyllis Lucca.
In October of 2018 owner of Happy Puppy Pet Spa, Lucca, was accused of mistreating a poodle named Pumpkin. Pumpkin’s owner says her dog suffered a broken jaw, abdominal bruising, and small cuts outside of her left ear.
Lucca's says she didn't hurt Pumpkin.
"What people don’t realize Pumpkin was an older dog and had periodontal disease and the jaw was weaken by that periodontal disease,” said John Middleton.
Middleton, Lucca's attorney, says Lucca's life has been turned upside down and her image has been ruined.
"It has had a devastating impact on her grooming salon, on her career, her finances,” said Middleton.
Soon after the allegations a video surfaced online showing Lucca mistreat a small dog. The video went viral causing Lucca's business to suffer.
"It’s going to be a long road," said Lucca. "But I am confident that the people will see that I didn’t do anything wrong.”
Lucca says now that her case is over and she was found not guilty she can go back to rebuilding her life.