Local Woman Sued For Having Fostered Dog Euthanized

Annie was fostered to a Peacham woman through New England Lab Rescue, which is now suing the woman, Emily Kubicke, for unjustly having the dog euthanized. (Contributed Photo)

A Labrador retriever rescue organization based in Maine is suing a Peacham woman who fostered one of their labs, claiming the woman wrongfully had the dog euthanized.

A lawsuit filed by New England Lab Rescue against Emily Kubicke states she had Littleton Area Veterinary Urgent Care euthanize a two-year-old lab-pit bull mix named Annie on April 8. The complaint states this action was a breach of Kubicke’s foster contract with the lab rescue and that Kubicke had no right to have Annie destroyed because she didn’t belong to Kubicke.

New England Lab Rescue (NELR) is based in Limerick, Maine, and serves to rescue Labrador retrievers from bad situations that endanger their health through neglect or abuse. The dogs are often placed in foster homes to allow for any necessary medical care and time for the rescue organization to find permanent homes.

The lawsuit by NELR was filed in Caledonia Superior Court on April 28. It seeks from Kubicke a reimbursement of veterinary bills totaling $5,000 that NELR claims it paid, along with additional money in punitive damages and a court order that bars Kubicke from fostering any more dogs.

According to the lawsuit, Kubicke filed an application with NELR in November 2021, offering her home as a foster location for one of their dogs in need of temporary placement. A contract noting her signature states that she agreed “to assume the risks implicit in working with dogs who may have been abandoned, beaten, or otherwise mistreated or abused, or who may suffer from an illness, condition or disease.”

The contract further states that “if, at any time in the future, I cannot continue on in the foster program for ANY reason, I will not give away, sell or euthanize the dog.”

On her contract with the rescue organization, Kubicke noted that she had owned a beagle named Rose that she had adopted as a rescue in 2015. She presented that she had an ideal place to foster a dog and provided witness statements that spoke favorably of Kubicke as a good candidate to foster a dog.

The application was granted and Kubicke took Annie into her home in January.

According to the lawsuit, the day of Annie’s death on April 8 began with a trip to the Bradford Animal Hospital where Dr. Susan Tullar removed tumors from Annie’s head. Later that day the dog was taken by Kubicke to Littleton Area Veterinary Urgent Care, where Kubicke reportedly misrepresented the dog’s prognosis and urged Dr. Sarah Cappello to euthanize the dog.

The complaint notes, “Defendant (Kubicke) falsely claimed that Bradford had informed her that Annie’s prognosis was dire. Defendant further falsely claimed that Bradford had offered her the option of euthanasia after the surgery. Defendant claimed to Dr. Cappello that Annie was suffering and would likely not survive following the mass removal surgery. Defendant lied to Dr. Cappello and stated that Annie had six months left to live.”

According to the lawsuit, Kubicke lied to Dr. Cappello by claiming she was the dog’s owner and said the dog’s name was Winnie. The complaint further notes that Dr. Cappello tried to convince Kubicke not to have the dog put down.

“Defendant repeatedly lied to Dr. Cappello in stating that Bradford had told her to euthanize Annie and, after making her best efforts to dissuade her, Dr. Cappello consented and euthanized Annie on the night of April 8, 2022.”

Kubicke then reportedly lied about Annie’s fate when contacted by text from NELR which had reached out to see how the procedure at Bradford had gone for Annie. A text message thread submitted as an exhibit notes a response at 7:30 a.m. on April 9 from Kubicke that stated, “Annie passed in her sleep last night.”

A social media posting labeled “Justice for Annie” by NELR notes, “Our 2-year-old Annie did not die in her sleep after surgery as we were told.” The posting further notes, “Emily Kubicke is responsible for the deliberate, unnecessary death of a sweet innocent lab who the ER vet said was relaxed, wagging her tail and trusting her for protection and a bit of love.”

Kubicke has not submitted a response to the court and she did not respond to voicemail messages left for her by press time. A linkedin notation online states that she is a biomedical technician.

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