Florida man accused of posing as a vet and performing surgery on dog who later died

The Gist: A 61-year-old man, posing as a vet, performed a fatal surgery on a pregnant Chihuahua named Sugar.

What Happened?: Osvaldo Sanchez, a licensed pet groomer, was arrested Friday for animal abuse and practicing veterinary medicine without a license. He had performed a C-section and spay procedure on Sugar, a six-pound Chihuahua, in his mobile office, a revamped ambulance. Sugar later died due to complications from the surgery.

By The Numbers:

  • 61: Age of Sanchez.
  • $600: Amount Sanchez charged Sugar’s owners for the procedure.
  • 1: Stillborn puppy removed during the surgery.
  • 7: Days Sugar battled with post-surgery complications.

Why It Matters: Sheriff Kevin Rambosk emphasized the dangers of entrusting pets to unlicensed individuals. He stated that pets’ lives are at risk when unlicensed people perform surgeries, prescribe medications, or claim to provide necessary care. Sugar’s tragic death serves as a cautionary tale for pet owners to ensure they’re dealing with licensed professionals.

What’s Next?: The Collier County Sheriff’s Department’s Animal Cruelty Investigations Alliance continues its probe into the matter. Sanchez faces charges and will be held accountable for his actions. Pet owners are urged to be diligent and only trust licensed veterinarians with their pets’ care.

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