It's been a year and a half, but Pamela Ferrara still tears up when she talks about Carmella’s death.
Ferrara and her husband Chris do not have children; the 9-year-old Shih Tzu was like a daughter to them.
They feel her death was completely preventable. That's the issue at the heart of the civil lawsuit they've filed against Tampa Bay Veterinary in Largo.
While medical malpractice cases are not tracked by American Veterinary Medical Association, experts who work in the field say these types of cases have become more common in recent years. But proving veterinary wrongdoing is responsible for a pet's death can be difficult.
It's extremely rare for these cases to result in the recovery of major damages, says Joyce Tischler of the Animal Legal Defense Fund. Still, the Ferraras are determined to get what they call justice for Carmella.