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Mobile pet euthanasia service charged

  |   Feb. 5, 2009 at 8:01 AM
TORONTO, Feb. 5 (UPI) -- A Toronto couple that operates a referral service for veterinarians to euthanize pets in their homes has been charged with practicing without a license.

Eric and Shelley Blechman opened Pet Heaven in 2004 in which pet owners can call 24 hours a day for help with their dying pets. The couple dispatches a veterinarian to the home to perform the euthanasia and, in most cases, one of them accompanies the vet, the Toronto Sun said. The service includes disposal and cremation, the couple said.

They were to begin a trial this week on charges by the Ontario College of Veterinarians they are practicing veterinary medicine without a license, the Toronto Star said.

The allegations stemmed from a September 2007 complaint from a woman who claimed her dying dog was treated roughly by the attending veterinarian, the Star said.

The couple's lawyer told the Sun the charge was "ridiculous," and said he was confident common sense would win out in court.

"They don't cut up animals. They don't inject animals," he said. "They don't practice veterinary medicine. Helping someone find a mobile vet is not veterinary medicine."

If the couple's company is convicted, fines could reach $100,000, the Star said.

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