A dog owner is demanding Bunnings Warehouse pay her vet bills after her six-month-old puppy got her paws stuck on a travelator.
Lisa Sinclair’s short-haired Chihuahua Chelsea’s left front paw and right hind paw became stuck in a travelator at Bunnings Burleigh Waters on the Gold Coast in Queensland at 3 pm on Saturday.
Ms. Sinclair rushed Chelsea to a vet across the road, where the puppy’s middle toe on her injured hind paw had to be amputated.
Shocking photos show that both of Chelsea’s injured paws were left mangled and bloody with exposed flesh after becoming caught in the travelator.
The dog owner wants Bunnings to pay for Saturday’s vet bill and ongoing bills related to Chelsea’s injuries.
How Chelsea Got Her Paws Stuck
She also wants the Bunnings store it happened at to erect warning signs around the travelator.
Ms. Sinclair said the ordeal was ‘horrific’ for both herself and Chelsea.
‘I had her (Chelsea) on a leash on my left-hand side. I’m trying to help her be independent so I let her walk a bit,’ Ms. Sinclair told Daily Mail Australia.
‘I put her on travelator with me and as I stepped off. Then, I heard a scream. That’s when I turned around and saw that she was in a lot of pain. So, I picked her up right away.
‘I could see as I picked her up, that she was bleeding. And, there was some damage to the front paw.’
A woman who worked at Bunnings and another woman who was shopping heard the dog’s screams. They came to help Ms. Sinclair, offering a towel for the blood.
Ms. Sinclair then rushed Chelsea to a vet across the road, where the dog required immediate surgery for her injuries.
The Rundown of the Paws Stuck Story
‘Her middle balance toe on her back foot had to be fully amputated; they couldn’t save it,’ Ms. Sinclair said.
‘There were similar injuries on the front one, part of the paw and nail was gone.’
Ms. Sinclair paid $472.10 for the vet fees and will likely pay hundreds more for subsequent checkups.
‘I’m not working, so it’s very hard to survive or even buy food at the moment,’ she said.
How Chelsea’s Doing Now
‘Chelsea can’t stand, she’s quite wobbly on her feet and I have to carry her around.
‘I’ll take her for another check next Monday. But, she may need more pain medication, and there’s a consultancy fee as well. So, it’s really adding up.’
The dog owner wants Bunnings to pay for Saturday’s bill. She also needs ongoing bills related to injuries sustained from the travelator incident to be laid off.
Bunnings Acting Area Manager Dean Nantes said the following. ‘We were sorry to hear that an incident involving a customer’s dog happened at our Burleigh Waters store.’
‘We have been liaising directly with this customer to offer support and are working towards a resolution.’
Ms. Sinclair said she received a call from Bunnings management on Tuesday offering to pay for Saturday’s bill on the condition that she sign a contract and no longer speak about the incident.
‘I think he (a man from Bunnings management) wants to shut me up and make it go away really quickly,’ she said.
The Aftermath of Getting Your Paws Stuck
‘He was trying to make me sign something and convince me it was in my interest but I don’t think it was in my interest.
‘If I accept that and sign something right now, there will be another vet bill next week, what about then?
She also believes there should be signage around the travelator warning owners about the potential danger to their dogs.
‘The vet across the road told me he has treated another dog who was injured on the same travelator, so I think there might be something wrong with it,’ Ms. Sinclair said.
‘I’m not the one that’s done anything wrong, I just think awareness needs to be out there so it doesn’t happen to another dog at this store.
Bunnings Warehouse’s guidelines dictate that dogs are welcome in stores as long as they are friendly.
Owners must secure their dogs either on a leash, in a vehicle, in a trolley, or carry them by hand.