LONDONDERRY TOWNSHIP, DAUPHIN COUNTY — The Hoffner family is feeling a mix of emotions after their beloved dog somehow escapes `Greenlin Pet Resort` in Middletown and is then hit and killed by a car.
Rob Hoffner says he dropped his family’s 3-year-old dog ‘Tulip’ off along with their other dog to the facility on Saturday evening, before heading out on a family trip to Baltimore.
It wasn’t until Sunday morning he got a call from the facility`s owner saying their dog had escaped the night before.
“I just froze it was disbelief,” said Rob Hoffner. “I asked how? How could this have possibly happened? He said I don’t know we’re going to review surveillance tape here and see how exactly she got out,” added Hoffner.
A few hours later Hoffner received another call with even more bad news from the owner.
“He said she was struck and hit by a car and killed instantly and he said I retrieved her body what would you like it’s not good and he said I have a vet that would cremate her,” said Hoffner.
The Hoffner’s are demanding answers from the owner of Greenlin Pet Resort.
“He said she dug out of a kennel that had a concrete slab underneath it that she somehow got under another door and then a third door outside and I said how did she get outside and he said I guess we weren’t prepared for a dog like Tulip,” said Hoffner.
Samantha Hoffner says she was furious when he learned no one was at the facility overnight when it happened.
“We thought you know at least one person would stay over night what if a fire happens, what if a dog gets out then somebody is there. You wouldn’t think they would leave all of those dogs there all night,”
A former employee who did not wish to reveal her identity tells FOX43 this is not the first time something like this has happened. She says seven years ago another dog escaped and was hit and killed.
“All of the employees left by 6:00 p.m. in the evening and didn’t return until 7:00 a.m. the next morning, ‘ she said. “There’s just not enough supervision for the amount of animals there,” she added.
The owner at Greenlin Pet Resort declined to answer our questions on camera.
In a statement he wrote: “The entire Greenlin Pet Resorts family is saddened and grieves with the family whose dog escaped from our indoor play area at Greenlin East in Londonderry Township and was struck and killed by a vehicle on Sunday. The dog managed to get through a door that was in the process of being replaced as part of a renovation project.
In the wake of this tragedy, Greenlin staff will conduct repeated safety and security checks in all areas where remodeling or construction is occurring. We have also closed the west side indoor playground at Greenlin East for the duration of the renovations. Additionally, we are doing a thorough review of all of our safety procedures.
Since we opened our first pet resort more than 15 years ago, we have had the privilege to care for hundreds of dogs, cats and other treasured pets. However, we know that does not ease the pain of this incident, and our heart goes out to the family. One accident is one too many, and we want to assure you that we are committed to the safety of our guests.
We started Greenlin Pet Resorts because we felt the Harrisburg area didn’t offer the kind of quality pet care my family wanted for our own best friend. Every guest is important to us, and we pride ourselves on knowing them by their first name.
Words cannot adequately express how sorry we are for the loss of this family’s beloved dog. We want to assure our clients that we have taken all necessary steps to prevent something like this from happening in the future.”
Officials with the Department of Agriculture say the Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement is investigating the incident.
The Hoffner family says they are planning to pursue legal action.