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Police allege groomer beat, strangled and mutilated a customer's dog.

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  • Police allege groomer beat, strangled and mutilated a customer's dog.

    Dog groomer blamed in death

    May 17, 2007 — A Shrewsbury woman is accused of fatally injuring a poodle she was supposed to groom, according to Baltimore County Police reports.
    Celeste A. Rainone, 52, of the first block of Woodland Drive, faces animal cruelty charges in the death of Rajah, a poodle who died in February.

    Authorities said a necropsy showed the 14-year-old dog was beaten, strangled and mutilated. Police allege it was at the hands of Rainone.

    According to court documents, Rainone denies the allegations and told investigators she is an animal lover and would never hurt an animal. She could not be reached for comment Wednesday night.

    Police said the dog's owner, Nancy Pine of Baldwin, Md., took her dog and her mother's dog to Rainone's dog grooming business, Grooming by Celeste, in Hydes, Md., about noon Feb. 16 for grooming. Several hours later, Rainone and her boyfriend dropped the dogs off at Pine's home.

    Pine told police she noticed the dog was lethargic and its breathing was shallow. She said she took Rajah to Falls Road Animal Hospital, where the dog died during the early morning hours of Feb. 17.

    After the dog's death, Pine tried to file a complaint with police but was told she didn't have enough evidence against the dog groomer. Pine sent Rajah for a necropsy, and three main findings pointed to the dog being abused, police said.

    Rajah had liver damage, four fractured ribs and other injuries, including hemorrhages in the eyes believed to have been caused by strangulation, officials said.

    Baltimore County Police began investigating the case, talking to the doctors who saw Rajah, workers at a business next door to the dog groomer, Pine and Rainone.

    Police said Rainone's neighbors reported hearing loud noises and Rainone's raised voice the day Rajah was at the shop. They also said they overhead Rainone telling someone the dog had bitten her, according to court documents.

    Baltimore County Police filed charges against Rainone May 2. She has a court appearance slated for June 18 in Baltimore County.
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  • #2
    I hope they treat her the same way she treated that poor defenseless dog, how sad there are people like this ruining our industries reputation.


    • #3
      Heart goes out to owner...

      This is my first post, and this story made me quit lurking and finally spout off... and I have to say I am digusted and sick to my stomach.

      There is never ANY reason to treat an animal with such in-humane care.

      I don't care how bad or aggressive they are/were. Send them to another Groomer if you can't handle them!

      This Groomer needs serious punishment and mental help. I couldn't imagine if anyone had done this to one of our pets....


      • #4
        What is WRONG with people? Again, I don't believe everything the press prints but at face value I am saddened by this.
        We had a local groomer allegedly kill a dog recently in a "drying box". Since then, and deservedly so, my clients are asking if I use them...I don't. I have had a LOT of new questions being asked by new and exising clients that I have never heard before. It's sad.
        If all this alleged bad behavior keeps up people just might do home grooming or go to "do it yourself" places. I'm sure it is a BIG reason states want to regulate pet grooming.
        I can't even imagine a day that ANY dog would push me to be violent against it.


        • #5
          we have a local boarding/grooming kennel here that has been "strong arming", just last week they killed an english bulldog, wrestling it down to get it muzzled!!!!yikes! then another, a great dane was put in "cross-tie chokers" til it passed out,,,just for a nail trim! and these people are "trainers" ...I think the american boarding kennel association needs to do some regulating as well!


          • #6
            Good grief, that's right around the corner from me. I know exactly who they are talking about!
            I feel bad for the poor dog, and the owner, but I'll reserve judgment until it's proven guilty.
            Scratch a dog and you'll find a permanent job. ~Franklin P. Jones


            • #7
              horrible- this is long.....sorry

              this is a very sad story. if this is in fact what happened this person should go to jail! i know that alot of groomers don't want to believe that one of "us" could be this horrible, but there are groomers out there that shouldn't be grooming. i can tell you first hand of 2 stories that i know of. the first was about my great-grandma's dog, "Tarzan". He was a "large mini poodle" anyway, i can honestly tell you he was a nasty dog. but he was wonderful to my great grandma. she was immobile and he would get her mail, get the paper,etc...she sent him to a groomer(pick up and delivery service)my grandma was also a groomer, but ggm didn't like that my gm wouldn't take money for the groom. so w/o telling gm she sent him to a groomer. they brought the dog home, told my ggm he was acting lethargic and went on their merry way. my ggm who could not get down the stairs to where they left the dog, called my gm because the dog was laying on the floor downstairs. my gm had to rush him to the vet, where he died. vet said looked like dog was beaten with a chain....groomer actually admitted to this when strongly questioned and told of the vets findings. she said the dog was nasty and she was trying to teach him how to behave! this person shouldn't be grooming!
              now the next story....about 15 yrs ago when i worked at a grooming shop a new groomer just out of school about 6 months was working with us. she had a poodle puppy on the table. the pup was being a typical pup(very squirmy and not cooperative at all. i was grooming a dog when she started screaming at the puppy. i turned around and she was shaking it furiously in the air. in about 2 seconds it went limp. i grabbed him from her and i revived him. she started crying hysterically. now this was not my grooming shop and the owner of shop was there. but owner was not a groomer. i told her if it was my grooming shop, she would be fired on the spot. but it is not my grooming shop. i told her if she ever has a problem with an animal and it is stressing her out, either ask for help, or put him away for a bit and work on something else, or send him home. but Never Ever do anything like that again. i asked her what she thought about stories you read of in the paper when people shake their babies soo hard and kill them. anyway, she never did do anything like that again while i was working with her. i hope she learned her lesson. and to tell you honestly, she was a very nice girl. she just lost it. and you need to have better self control then that.oh, and the pup was fine.thank god.


              • #8
                Originally posted by rapuzzled View Post
                Good grief, that's right around the corner from me. I know exactly who they are talking about!
                I feel bad for the poor dog, and the owner, but I'll reserve judgment until it's proven guilty.
                I know exactly where this place is. I live about 20 minutes from it. I don't know anything about the place or reputation, but I had heard a story not too long ago from a client about an issue with an older dog dying there. I took it with a grain of salt (might have been a pre-existing condition), but who knows. It really is a shame. I learned to groom in the petsomething fishbowl and I think it's a great idea for those who aren't made paranoid about being watched. It really keeps you aware about staying calm when things aren't working out with a pet while you're learning how to groom and handle pets. It's not my dog so I don't have any right to smack or abuse it. We don't even smack our own dogs for misbehavior. It never makes any progress.