NEW HANOVER COUNTY -- A New Hanover County woman says she didn't get what she paid for when she hired a local pet sitter. Nearly a month after coming home to pet feces all over her house Kathy Page was still waiting for a refund and the key to her house. Page said, "It was remarkable, there were five different piles of dog feces throughout the house. In the kitchen there were three different areas where he urinated." Page paid $270 for a pet sitter to take care of her dog and cat while she took a week-long vacation earlier this month. Her usual sitter was already booked, so she hired All About Smoochies pet daycare after seeing an ad in the yellow pages. "They wanted a check left along with the key, and so I did that, and paid up front, which usually you pay at the end -- and do a deposit," Page said. "But I guess since I was a new client too, that's why we went ahead and did that." When Kathy came back and found the conditions her animals had been left in she called the pet sitter, demanding answers. The owner of All About Smoochies, Tameron Himelrick, explained that she'd gotten sick and her husband Ervin had to take over caring for Page's animals. Page says Ms. Himelrick agreed to give her a partial refund, but nearly a month later she is still waiting for her money and her house key. "She's not answering my calls now," Page said. "Falsely set up meeting times and places, she was supposed to come to the house one night, I was supposed to meet her at her doctors when she brought her little boy into town, nothing has worked out." All About Smoochies advertises itself as a Christian family business, with 25 years experience. But when we did a little digging we found out the owners, Tameron and Ervin Himelrick, both have lengthy criminal records. Tameron has recently been arrested for fraud and authorities have citied her husband for possession of stolen goods. Tameron Himelrick called back Wednesday morning to say she was en route to Page's house with a refund check and the house key. But Page said when she got the check Wednesday afternoon it was only for $55. She said at the very least she's happy to have her key back. If you're looking for a pet sitter for your pets animal experts recommend getting a reference first from your veterinarian.
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