Pet-adoption charity owner Shelly Froehlich recalls feeling bad for a woman battling cancer who came to her with seven rottweiler dogs she claimed she could no longer care for.
So she took them in and even waived the $600 surrender fee — before learning that all of the dogs were sick and would require costly medical treatment.
She then discovered that the cancer patient, Sylvia Shoen, was married to one of the richest men in Arizona.
Froehlich and Shoen for weeks battled on social media over who would foot the bill for the sick pups — Rotten Rottie Rescue or Joe and Sylvia Shoen of the U-Haul fortune, The Arizona Republic reported.
Froehlich promised to publicly shame Shoen if she didn’t pay up.
“I did (Sylvia) a very big favor,” Froehlich told the Arizona Republic. “She dumped seven dogs on me at the last minute. … I used social media to shame them into doing the right thing. They changed their tune pretty quickly.”
Volunteers agreed to foster two of the pups, Coco and Diesel, while Froehlich kept the remaining five dogs.
But the foster families quickly realized the dogs were unwell, and suffered from diarrhea and dehydration, according to the report.
Both dogs were treated for coccidia, an intestinal parasite, while another puppy, named Bodhi, was found to have giardia, a parasite typically found in contaminated water.
Froehlich contacted the Shoens’ assistant and learned the dogs had been diagnosed with and treated for giardia before they had been dropped of.
Four 9-week-old puppies had not yet been vaccinated, even though they typically receive the shots at six weeks.
Froehlich vaccinated the puppies and also treated Coco for a hernia, and spayed her.
Two 8-month-old puppies, Chanel and King Kong, had difficulty walking and required hip surgery, which could cost as much as $20,000.
Froehlich said the charity couldn’t afford to pay for the procedures and asked Shoen, whose husband’s net worth is an estimated $2.7 billion according to Forbes, to cover the cost.
She warned that without surgery, she might have to put King Kong down.
“I was shocked that a woman of your wealth would have staff that would let these dogs get into the shape that they are in,” she said in a text message to Shoen.
“You certainly can afford (the surgery) through. You are a billionaire! … You probably have a hand bag that costs more than what their surgery will cost. Please do this for them. I beg you. Don’t force me to put them out of their misery when you can give them a good life,” Froehlich wrote.
She threatened to publicly shame Shoen, which prompted a nasty retort.
“Crazy dog adoption lady trying to squeeze the Shoen’s for $$$,” Sylvia wrote, according to screenshots of the texts to Froelich, The Arizona Republic reported.
“This B—h will never see a copper penny!”
Froehlich slammed Shoen in a Facebook post that was shared more than 800 times.
Readers threatened to boycott U-Haul as a result.
The Shoens ultimately acceded to Froehlich — allowing her to keep the dogs and paying for their medical expenses, which amounted to roughly $15,300, including the hip surgeries, according to the report.