Talulah Jones' Robin Lohre sues maid service after coming home to find dog dead under table
Robin Lohre loves big. She loves her daughter, Imogene. She loves her boutique, Talulah Jones, a true Denver retail treasure. And she loves dogs -- especially mutts like Ruthie, who she adopted last year and took with her everywhere "other than restaurants and the grocery store," she says. Which explains why she was shocked to return after having her house cleaned to find Ruthie dead under a table -- and why she's suing the maid service she holds responsible.
Big pics below.
"It's broken my heart," Lohre says.
When asked Ruthie's breed, Lohre doesn't have any easy answer. "She was from the pound, so we don't know for sure -- but she was probably part wirehair dachshund. She was ridiculously long -- a one of a kind dog, just the sweetest dog you could ever meet."
She was also a "shop dog" -- a regular fixture at Taluah Jones, and a successor to Fred, a pooch so beloved by customers of Lohre's previous establishment, Miss Talulah's, that dozens banded together to nominate him for a Westword Best of Denver award in 2001. When Fred died of cancer in 2005, Talulah Jones regulars shared favorite memories of him with Westword as a way of working through their grief.
Ruthie looking sharp.
Ruthie wasn't around nearly as long as Fred had been -- Lohre adopted her in April 2010, when she was approximately three months old. But she quickly charmed all who came into contact with her, Lohre says. She adds that Ruthie was incredibly patient with Imogene, who's six. "Every little girl who'd see her would pick her up and carry her around, and my daughter would dress her up in doll clothes and sing to her for hours in her rocking chair. And she wouldn't struggle, and she wouldn't try to get away. She knew it was love, and she accepted it."
Then, this past August, Lohre purchased a Living Social coupon that offered a three-hour housecleaning by the Posh Maids company for $49. The maid arrived at 10 a.m., and Lohre offered to take Ruthie with her. "The housecleaner said, 'Leave the dog. She'll be fine,'" notes attorney Jennifer Edwards of the Animal Law Center, who's representing Lohre. "So my client gave very specific directions -- that the only door to use is the back door, because there was a mudroom attached, and you can close one door and put the dog in the kitchen while you go out, so she never would have exposure to the outside."
At about 12:22 p.m., Edwards continues, Lohre received a call from Posh Maids owner Miranda Pallone, who's named in the suit. Pallone allegedly told Lohre the job was done, having been finished in fewer than three hours because a second housecleaner had joined the first.
"Robin returned about forty minutes later with her daughter," Edwards says. "And Ruthie wasn't at the back door waiting, like she usually was. So Robin looked around for her, and discovered her lying under the dining-room table. And she realized she was deceased."