Unbearable Tragedy: Repeated Flooding Took Lives of Multiple Pets at Northeast DC Doggy Day Care

News4’s Walter Morris spoke to a pet owner who was lucky enough to be reunited with her dog.

Several pets drowned as a dog day care flooded again in Northeast D.C. during Monday afternoon’s severe storms.

“It’s hard to watch; it’s unbearable,” D.C. Fire and EMS Chief John Donnelly said. “This is losing a member of your family or being scared that you did.”

Pet owners, some in tears, waited outside District Dogs to be reunited with their pets as firefighters carried soaked animals out of the facility on Rhode Island Avenue.

Water rose 6 feet up the front of the building before a wall collapsed and water rushed inside.

“As a result of that, we’ve had some fatalities for the dogs,” D.C. Fire and EMS Chief John Donnelly said.

The deceased dogs’ families are being notified of the tragedy.

Firefighters had to break through drywall to let water out of the building and rescue seven employees and 20 dogs.

Donnelly called the employees heroes who did everything they could to save the dogs.

Pet owners said they were told the dogs were moved to an elevated area as the building flooded.

“I ran down here as fast as I could,” pet owner Caroline Kruk said.

She rushed down to District Dogs after seeing a video of her dog, Emmy, being rescued.

“[I felt] just relief, pure relief when I saw her little head come out over the barrier, just knowing that she’s OK,” Kruk said.

Although she is grateful her pet is OK, she said her heart breaks for the other pet owners who weren’t so lucky.

District Dogs, which offers day care, grooming and boarding services, also was damaged by floodwaters in August 2022, and the owner pleaded with the city to do something about the flood-prone area.

DC Water said a tunnel that should help with flooding in the area is expected to open in two months.

Five cars and a truck became disabled in floodwaters under the Rhode Island Avenue railway bridge.

D.C. Fire and EMS rescued 20 people in the area, including 10 at District Dogs.

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