CNY doggie day care owner threatens legal action over abuse allegations

ELBRIDGE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — It all started with a Facebook post alleging animal abuse and mistreatment at a dog day care in Elbridge.

“I thought all of it was absolutely horrendous. I felt like there was absolutely no excuse for any of it,” Alisha Kellogg said.

After taking her own dog there for a year, Alisha Kellogg began working at ‘Stay and Play Doggie Day Care’ in Elbridge. She walked out on her third day, after she said she witnessed animal abuse. She made a Facebook post alleging staff members “hit,” “smack,” “yell,” and “mistreat” the animals in their care. The post has since been shared more than 400 times.

A former employee, who did not want to be identified, sent Kellogg another video taken at the dog day care in 2020, in which the day care owner is seen interacting with a dog. Some claim she’s kicking the dog. Kellogg added that video to her post.

Stay and Play Doggie Daycare, Elbridge

“I don’t think there’s any circumstance that, that was okay,” Kellogg said, wiping a tear from her face.

Kellogg also recorded her own video on her third and final day, which showed the dog day care’s owner, Terry Powers, grabbing a dog’s collar, while lifting up his face. NewsChannel 9 was able to track down the owner of the dog from that video.

“Even though it doesn’t look horrible, it’s just, it’s not the way I want someone to treat my dog. I don’t treat my dog that way,” Kristen Leader said. “The way she was pulling up on his collar, I didn’t like that. I just was very upset.”

NewsChannel 9 went to ‘Stay and Play’ to ask owner, Terry Powers, about the abuse allegations.

“Do you mistreat dogs here?” NewsChannel 9’s Rachel Polansky asked. 

“No. No,” Powers answered. “Was I a little bit aggressive? Maybe. But the fact the puppy was clawing on me and climbing on me, and I was basically protecting myself, as well.”

Powers is referring to the video from 2020. 

“Is it okay to kick dogs?” Polansky asked, referring to the same video.

“I wasn’t kicking him. I was pushing him with my foot,” Powers said. “If you have a bunch of dogs running around helter skelter, you’re gonna have problems. You’re gonna have injuries. And, we try our best so keep everybody safe here.”

Terry Powers

While Powers isn’t proud of her behavior in the videos, she defends herself, saying most people don’t understand what it takes to run a doggie day care.

“It’s structure. It’s not playing with puppies all day long,” Powers said. “When a dog protests, they squeal, they squawk. If you watch a mother dog correct her puppies, she puts them down. Does the puppy like that? No, but it sets a precedent for not letting him get away with anything.”

Even though Powers has lost some customers and employees, she said her business isn’t going anywhere.

“I’m not ready to just give up,” Powers said.

Neither is Alisha Kellogg.

“I want to make sure that every single person who brings their dog there, is aware of how this particular woman treats these dogs,” Kellogg added.

Alisha Kellogg

Kellogg is one of nine people who have sent complaints to CNY SPCA.

The president, Troy Waffner, tells NewsChannel 9: “We take all complaints that we receive seriously and have reached out to the business to discuss the allegations – it is ongoing.”

NewsChannel 9 shared all of the videos in our reporting with the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office. They are investigating.

Meanwhile, a protest is planned outside ‘Stay and Play’ in Elbridge on Friday afternoon.

On Thursday evening, lawyers for ‘Stay and Play’ sent a cease-and-desist letter to Kellogg and the protest organizer, Andrea Harris. The lawyers are demanding Kellogg remove all “defamatory” statements about ‘Stay and Play’ from her social media platforms. They call it a smear campaign and say Powers is exploring legal action. The lawyers are also demanding that protest organizer, Andrea Harris, “call off the protest.”

Read the full cease-and-desist letter below. NewsChannel 9 redacted addresses and curse words.

Powered by News Channel 9.

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