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Around 100 rats set loose behind shopping plaza – WSAZ

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 29, 2017 in Rat News
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IRONTON, Ohio (WSAZ) — Some true animal lovers spent their Friday night trying to help a large number of abandoned rats that were turned loose behind the Ironton Hills Shopping Plaza.

Employee Nicole Eubank first noticed six cages left open by the woods behind the plaza on Tuesday morning.

“I’m not a rat person, but I saw an animal that needed help,” Eubank said. “They didn’t know how to survive. They didn’t know how to get food or water. Their cages were open. They were all out of the cages, but they were coming back to the cages every day.”

The animal lovers are guessing around 100 domesticated rats are now loose in the area.

“They’re domesticated, so they do not know what they should be doing,” Eubank said.

She’s spent the week trying to make sure they were fed and watered.

“They were starving,” she said. “They were dehydrated.”

Shopper Kathy Carmon, an animal lover through and through, couldn’t bear the thought of the little critters suffering.

“I will go home and think about this, and I will wonder how many we didn’t save,” Carmon said.

Carmon caught as many as she could with a net — even some with her bare hands — and put them back into a cage.

“I’ll wonder about the person that dropped these off, whether they will ever care that they killed a few or that people will come up here and snatch them up to feed them to their snakes,” Carmon said. “I just wonder if we even make a difference.”

Lawrence County Humane Society Agent Randy Thompson told WSAZ a little after 10 p.m. that the person who abandoned the rats has been found, and that person was back on the scene working to collect the rats.

There’s no word yet on whether that person will end up being charged.

Some of the rats were taken in at Bert’s Pet Center in Russell, Kentucky, earlier this week. An employee there says several of the rats have already found new homes.

Article source: http://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Large-number-of-rats-set-loose-behind-shopping-plaza-420133374.html

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Lawsuit against Petco: Closing arguments in trial over boy’s rat bite …

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 25, 2017 in Rat News
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SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – Closing arguments are set to begin Tuesday in the trial of a lawsuit filed over the death of a 10-year-old boy, who contracted a disease from a pet rat purchased from a Petco store.

In 2013, Aiden Pankey died from rat bite fever from a pet rat that was bought by his grandmother.

The Pankey family filed a lawsuit against Petco, claiming the store sold them a diseased pet rat. The family wants stricter policies in place, so no other family goes through what they did.

The family’s attorney, Bibianne Fell, said in her opening statement, “What this case is about is Petco selling rats that had a deadly bacteria to people, including children, and as a result, 10-year-old Aidan Pankey died.”

Fell also cited others around the country who she said contracted rat bite fever from rats bought from Petco. Fell told the court that it’s an illness the company was aware of.

RELATED: Trial over boy’s rat bite fever death begins

Petco’s attorney Kimberly Oberrecht told jurors that there are risks with owning any pet, adding rats can carry bacteria that could make people sick. She said rat bite fever is a very rare disease, but it is preventable if safe-handling instructions are followed.

Oberrecht read from a document Aidan’s grandmother signed when she purchased the pet. She said it states: “I release Petco from any and all responsibility related to illness injury or damage that may occur from exposure to my pet.”

RELATED: Court ruling could have impact on pet stores across California

“Ms. Pankey signed this document acknowledging that she read it, that she read the caution statements,” she added.

Article source: http://www.10news.com/news/lawsuit-against-petco-closing-arguments-in-trial-over-boys-rat-bite-fever-death-041817

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Lawsuit against Petco: Closing arguments in trial over boy’s rat bite fever death

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 24, 2017 in Rat News
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SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – Closing arguments are set to begin Tuesday in the trial of a lawsuit filed over the death of a 10-year-old boy, who contracted a disease from a pet rat purchased from a Petco store.

In 2013, Aiden Pankey died from rat bite fever from a pet rat that was bought by his grandmother.

The Pankey family filed a lawsuit against Petco, claiming the store sold them a diseased pet rat. The family wants stricter policies in place, so no other family goes through what they did.

The family’s attorney, Bibianne Fell, said in her opening statement, “What this case is about is Petco selling rats that had a deadly bacteria to people, including children, and as a result, 10-year-old Aidan Pankey died.”

Fell also cited others around the country who she said contracted rat bite fever from rats bought from Petco. Fell told the court that it’s an illness the company was aware of.

RELATED: Trial over boy’s rat bite fever death begins

Petco’s attorney Kimberly Oberrecht told jurors that there are risks with owning any pet, adding rats can carry bacteria that could make people sick. She said rat bite fever is a very rare disease, but it is preventable if safe-handling instructions are followed.

Oberrecht read from a document Aidan’s grandmother signed when she purchased the pet. She said it states: “I release Petco from any and all responsibility related to illness injury or damage that may occur from exposure to my pet.”

RELATED: Court ruling could have impact on pet stores across California

“Ms. Pankey signed this document acknowledging that she read it, that she read the caution statements,” she added.

Article source: http://www.10news.com/news/lawsuit-against-petco-closing-arguments-in-trial-over-boys-rat-bite-fever-death-041817

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Attorney argues father should be awarded $20M after son died fro …

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 23, 2017 in Rat News
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SAN DIEGO (CNS) – The father of a 10-year-old boy who died after contracting an infectious disease from a pet rat purchased from Petco should be awarded $20 million in damages for the loss of his son, an attorney for the plaintiff told a San Diego jury Tuesday.

Petco’s lawyer countered that the company does everything it can to prevent “rat-bite fever” and warns consumers of the rare condition when they buy a pet rat.

Closing arguments were delivered in a lawsuit brought by Andrew Pankey, whose son Aidan died on June 12, 2013, at Rady Children’s Hospital, just over two weeks after he got the male rat from a Petco store in Carmel Mountain Ranch.

John H. Gomez, an attorney for the plaintiff, told a jury that Petco knows the rats it sells are likely to carry “rat-bite fever” and burying information about RBF on the back of an companion animal card.

Gomez said there was no way to predict if a consumer was going to get an infected rat from Petco, which he said could have tested each rat before sale or stopped selling the rodents altogether.

Gomez also alleged that Petco hid its data on testing rats for RBF from the federal government. He told the jury that Petco makes millions of dollars from the sales of rats and doesn’t want the federal government to tell it to stop.

Petco attorney Kimberly Oberrecht told the jury that Petco was a leader in developing a test to see if a rat carried RBF.

She said there was no way to determine what percentage of rats have the disease and there is no way to stop it.

“They (Petco) warn about it because they know they can’t get rid of it,” Oberrecht told the jury. “It’s still very rare.”

She said there was no evidence of 200 separate claims of people contracting RBF to Petco, as Gomez claimed.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, pet rats are fine to be in a home as long as they are handled safely.

Consumers are not supposed to put a rat in their face or share food with a rat, the Petco attorney said.

She said the plaintiff had not proven that there is a substantial risk of getting RBF by purchasing a pet rat and scoffed at the $20 million in damages suggested by Gomez, saying the plaintiff should not get even $1 million.

The Petco attorney said Andrew Pankey wasn’t there for Aidan’s birth and the father wasn’t that involved in the child’s life.

Barney’s Pets, which supplied the rat in question to Petco, is also named as a defendant.

Jury deliberations were set to get underway in the courtroom of Judge Eddie Sturgeon.

Article source: http://www.cbs8.com/story/35176379/attorney-argues-father-should-be-awarded-20m-after-son-died-from-petco-pet-rat-bite

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Petco not liable in fatal ‘rat bite fever’ case, jury says – The San Diego Union

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 21, 2017 in Rat News
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A San Diego jury has found that Petco was not negligent when it sold a pet rat to a 10-year-old boy who later became sick and died after handling the animal.

Aidan Pankey died of an ailment known as rat bite fever, the result of a bacterial infection he contracted from a rat that was bred for sale as a pet.

A San Diego Superior Court jury deliberated about a day before reaching verdicts late Wednesday. The verdicts were read Thursday morning in Judge Eddie Sturgeon’s courtroom.

The panel found that Petco Animal Services Inc. knew or should have known that the pet rat was potentially dangerous when “used or misused” by a consumer in a reasonable manner. However, the jury said, Petco did not fail in its duty to adequately warn consumers of the potential danger and instruct them on how to handle rats safely.

Petco not liable in fatal ‘rat bite fever’ case, jury says – The San … – The San Diego Union

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 20, 2017 in Rat News
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A San Diego jury has found that Petco was not negligent when it sold a pet rat to a 10-year-old boy who later became sick and died after handling the animal.

Aidan Pankey died of an ailment known as rat bite fever, the result of a bacterial infection he contracted from a rat that was bred for sale as a pet.

A San Diego Superior Court jury deliberated about a day before reaching verdicts late Wednesday. The verdicts were read Thursday morning in Judge Eddie Sturgeon’s courtroom.

The panel found that Petco Animal Services Inc. knew or should have known that the pet rat was potentially dangerous when “used or misused” by a consumer in a reasonable manner. However, the jury said, Petco did not fail in its duty to adequately warn consumers of the potential danger and instruct them on how to handle rats safely.

Verdict Reached in Petco Case Where Boy Died From Pet Rat

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 19, 2017 in Rat News
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A Petco store. Photo via Wikimedia Commons
A Petco store. Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Jurors reached a verdict Wednesday in the trial of a lawsuit brought by the father of a 10-year-old boy who died after contracting an infectious disease from a pet rat purchased at Petco.

The jury began deliberating Wednesday morning and informed Judge Eddie Sturgeon by day’s end that it had reached a decision. The verdict will be read Thursday.

In closing arguments Tuesday, an attorney for plaintiff Andrew Pankey said he should be awarded $20 million for the loss of his son, Aidan, who died June 12, 2013, just two weeks after his grandmother bought the pet rat from a Petco store in Carmel Mountain Ranch.

Petco’s lawyer countered that the company does everything it can to prevent “rat-bite fever” and warns consumers of the rare condition when they buy a pet rat.

John H. Gomez, an attorney for the plaintiff, told the jury that Petco knows the rats it sells are likely to carry “rat-bite fever” and burying information about RBF on the back of a companion animal card. Gomez said there was no way to predict if a consumer was going to get an infected rat from Petco, which he said could have tested each rat before sale or stopped selling the rodents altogether.

Gomez also claimed Petco hid its data on testing rats for RBF from the federal government. He told the jury that Petco makes millions of dollars from rat sales and doesn’t want the federal government to tell it to stop.

Petco attorney Kimberly Oberrecht told the jury that Petco was a leader in developing a test to see if a rat carried RBF.

She said there was no way to determine what percentage of rats have the disease and there is no way to stop it.

“They (Petco) warn about it because they know they can’t get rid of it,” Oberrecht told the jury. “It’s still very rare.”

She said there was no evidence to support Gomez’s contention that there have been 200 separate claims filed with Petco about people contracting RBF.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, pet rats are fine to be in a home as long as they are handled safely.

Consumers are not supposed to put a rat in their face or share food with a rat, the Petco attorney said.

She said the plaintiff had not proven there is a substantial risk of getting RBF by purchasing a pet rat and scoffed at the $20 million in damages suggested by Gomez, saying the plaintiff should not get even $1 million.

The Petco attorney said Andrew Pankey wasn’t there for Aidan’s birth and the father wasn’t that involved in the child’s life.

Barney’s Pets, which supplied the rat in question to Petco, is also named as a defendant.

–City News Service

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Article source: https://timesofsandiego.com/crime/2017/04/19/verdict-reached-petco-case-boy-died-pet-rat/

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Attorney argues father should be awarded $20M after son died from Petco pet rat bite

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 18, 2017 in Rat News
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SAN DIEGO (CNS) – The father of a 10-year-old boy who died after contracting an infectious disease from a pet rat purchased from Petco should be awarded $20 million in damages for the loss of his son, an attorney for the plaintiff told a San Diego jury Tuesday.

Petco’s lawyer countered that the company does everything it can to prevent “rat-bite fever” and warns consumers of the rare condition when they buy a pet rat.

Closing arguments were delivered in a lawsuit brought by Andrew Pankey, whose son Aidan died on June 12, 2013, at Rady Children’s Hospital, just over two weeks after he got the male rat from a Petco store in Carmel Mountain Ranch.

John H. Gomez, an attorney for the plaintiff, told a jury that Petco knows the rats it sells are likely to carry “rat-bite fever” and burying information about RBF on the back of an companion animal card.

Gomez said there was no way to predict if a consumer was going to get an infected rat from Petco, which he said could have tested each rat before sale or stopped selling the rodents altogether.

Gomez also alleged that Petco hid its data on testing rats for RBF from the federal government. He told the jury that Petco makes millions of dollars from the sales of rats and doesn’t want the federal government to tell it to stop.

Petco attorney Kimberly Oberrecht told the jury that Petco was a leader in developing a test to see if a rat carried RBF.

She said there was no way to determine what percentage of rats have the disease and there is no way to stop it.

“They (Petco) warn about it because they know they can’t get rid of it,” Oberrecht told the jury. “It’s still very rare.”

She said there was no evidence of 200 separate claims of people contracting RBF to Petco, as Gomez claimed.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, pet rats are fine to be in a home as long as they are handled safely.

Consumers are not supposed to put a rat in their face or share food with a rat, the Petco attorney said.

She said the plaintiff had not proven that there is a substantial risk of getting RBF by purchasing a pet rat and scoffed at the $20 million in damages suggested by Gomez, saying the plaintiff should not get even $1 million.

The Petco attorney said Andrew Pankey wasn’t there for Aidan’s birth and the father wasn’t that involved in the child’s life.

Barney’s Pets, which supplied the rat in question to Petco, is also named as a defendant.

Jury deliberations were set to get underway in the courtroom of Judge Eddie Sturgeon.

Article source: http://www.cbs8.com/story/35176379/attorney-argues-father-should-be-awarded-20m-after-son-died-from-petco-pet-rat-bite

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Family sues Petco after 10-year-old son dies of rat bite fever

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 13, 2017 in Rat News
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Symptoms, which typically occur three to 10 days after exposure, include fever, vomiting, headache, muscle and joint pain and a rash, the CDC said. In some instances, however, symptoms are delayed up to three weeks, when any bites or scratches have already healed. 

Article source: http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/health-med-fit-science/family-sues-petco-after-year-old-son-dies-rat-bite-fever/LIBPARMG90g45xit8QTnSP/

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Grandmother Gave Grandson a Pet Rat. Now His Parents Say One Bite From It Ended His Precious Life

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Apr 12, 2017 in Rat News
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Ten-year-old Aiden Pankey was rushed to the hospital on June 12, 2013, with severe stomach pain. As the Associated Press reports, Aiden had woken up during the night with a fever, stomach problems, and severe pain. He was pale, lethargic, and could not walk. Aiden died later that afternoon.

In 2014, his parents sued Petco after it was discovered Aiden died from a streptobacillus moniliformis infection, also known as rat-bite fever. He had come home from the San Diego pet store chain on May 27, 2013, with a new pet rat named “Alex” that had been purchased by his grandma.

As the AP reports, in the lawsuit filed by Andrew Pankey and Vanessa Sauer, Aiden’s parents allege that Petco should have tested the rat for the disease. The pet store should have also posted warnings about the potential risks of owning a rat, especially among children.

According to The San Diego Tribune, on April 5, 2017, a lawyer for the family, Bibianne Fell, told jurors in her opening remarks at the San Diego Superior Court that Petco knew of the “hidden danger” of rat-bite fever, as there were dozens of reported cases of adults and children getting sick after buying rats from Petco:

“Despite this, you will hear that Petco is still selling rats to kids and kids are still getting sick. To this day,” she added, “Petco is still selling rats.”

Attorneys for Petco and Barney’s Pets, who supplied the rats, claim that testing each rat sold across Petco stores in the United States is impossible, and that customers are warned of the inherent risks of rat ownership.

They contend that customers — including Aiden’s grandmother — are given a form to sign upon purchasing a rat that alerts them to rat-bite fever.

However, citing the seven to thirteen percent mortality rate if rat-bite fever is left untreated, Fell stated that the risk of death is not made clear in the warning.

The AP reports the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) as stating:

According to the CDC, people can contract rat-bite fever from bites or scratches from infected rodents, such as rats, mice and gerbils, or even just by handling an animal with the disease without a bite or scratch. It can also be contracted by consuming food or drink contaminated with the bacteria. It is not spread from person to person.

There was no evidence at the time of Aiden’s death that he had been bitten.

According to Inside Edition.com, Petco claimed to have sold five million rats between 2001 and 2013. During that time, sixteen people were reported to have contracted the disease but were treated and recovered. Antibiotics such as penicillin are reportedly effective for treating rat-bite fever, and the CDC also states that the disease is rarely fatal.

Aiden’s father is seeking an unspecified amount of damage, reports The San Diego Tribune. His mother reportedly settled with Petco before the case went to trial.

According to the AP, the number of cases of rat-bite fever might be increasing especially among children, due to the popularity of pet rats. The bacteria that causes rat-bite fever is a part of their normal respiratory system.

Article source: http://ijr.com/2017/04/842482-son-dies-after-flu-like-symptoms-are-traced-back-to-bringing-home-a-new-pet/

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