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Woman heartbroken as puppy mysteriously dies 48 hours after taking him home

A woman has been left heartbroken after her beloved dog mysteriously died within 48 hours at home. Nunzia Citro, 33, said it was the “worst day in her entire life” when she had to put down 10-week-old pooch Neo at the vets, and is now “terrified to adopt a puppy” again.

The shih-poo pup cost Nunzia and her partner £600 from an online breeder in Ayrshire, Scotland. She paid the £100 deposit upfront before arranging a date to collect the puppy. Then the breeder changed the plans last minute and offered to meet in a supermarket car park in Edinburgh to drop the dog off, Edinburgh Live reports.

“This guy had his advert on a website and it looked like it was one you could trust,” Nunzia said, explaining that she checks before.

After paying the deposit, she was constantly updated with pictures and videos of the puppy with his brothers and sisters and the mum.

“On Thursday he told me he was going on a night out in Livingston with friends and that he could drop the puppy off, this meant I didn’t have to travel,” Nunzia explained.

She “never had any doubts” about the breeder and had dreamed about getting a puppy for years – so the day couldn’t come quick enough.

“He brought the puppy in his car and came with his wife and two children. We met in a big supermarket car park, he handed us the puppy and told me it was not vaccinated which I was already aware of,” she explained.

“He said the reason he was selling them without vaccinating them was because sometimes owners have trouble with different vets doing the vaccines.

“I was questioning myself a bit if that was true but I had trusted him and had to go to the vet anyway. I gave him the remaining money in cash.

“When he gave me the puppy he gave me the microchip and information on how to register him to my name and address.”

At home, Neo was strangely quiet and inactive, not wanting to play, eat or drink.

Nunzia expressed her concerns to a local vet, who reassured her that it could just be the stress of moving home.

But the following morning, the living room was covered in vomit and diarrhoea so she rushed the tiny pooch to an emergency medic.

It was discovered that the dog was underweight, had low levels of glucose and was showing abnormal behaviours for a puppy.

“While we were in the clinic the puppy went to the toilet and it was black with worms in it,” Nunzia said.

“The vet was gravely worried and said ‘I need to be honest with you guys, it is unlikely the puppy will survive so you have to think about that.’

“I decided to take the puppy home overnight to give him one night of love.”

Despite Nunzia’s prayers and care, Neo “looked dead with his eyes open” and the next morning, vets advised her to put him to sleep.

“Unfortunately my dream of adopting a puppy has ended being hugely traumatic. Neo, I have seen your sweet eyes for 48 hours only, but I will love you forever,” she said.

The price of having Neo put to sleep was £400, and Nunzia has set up a fundraising page for people to donate towards the vet costs.

“My goal is not to get my money back but to make sure this never happens to anyone else,” she said.

“As pets owner know, insurance will not cover me for the first 14 days and we are completely unable to afford such a cost.

“I have never had a worst day in my entire life. I am broken. Now I will keep fundraising to see if I could get some money back from people who will understand my pain and to save towards a new puppy in the future.”

Scottish SPCA chief inspector Laura McIntyre said: “We launched an investigation after we received a report of a poor pup passing away shortly after their owner had purchased them.

“As part of our investigation, we spoke at length with the owner, the vet which they’d taken the dog to, and the breeder they bought the pup from.

“The vet advised the pup had worms but at the point we were investigating, the body had been disposed of and we had no way of carrying out a post-mortem to establish if the pup had any illnesses or diseases.

“We also viewed the breeder’s premises and the two remaining pups from the litter.

“Both the pups were in good condition, and we provided the breeder with detailed advice on taking appropriate care of pups. Our investigation established that this pup was one of a litter of eight and all other pups from the litter appear to have had no issues.”