Johnson City (WSYR-TV) - It’s been more than seven months since floods devastated the Southern Tier for the second time in five years.
While thousands evacuated the Binghamton area, more than 100 animals were left for dead when a Johnson City Petco was overwhelmed by flood waters.
The store is set to re-open in the same location, but some significant changes are in order.
The most significant change will be that no animals will be sold from the store when it reopens its doors.
Animal rights activists are outraged that the store is re-opening.
“The animals that did pay, with their lives, for the negligence and the cruelty…and we think it’s criminal that someone dropped on them last September in the face of an evacuation order for this very plot of land,” said Dan Pedan of PETA.
Initially, Petco announced that they would not re-open in the same location as the original store.
“We tried to find a different building in the area that we could take over and open a new store there with a full complement of animals but we were not able to do that,” said Petco Vice President-Regional Operations John Drew.
The store will not house animals, but the company has also promised to give back to the community. The newly renovated store will hold a pet-adoption center inside the store, which will be managed by an animal rescue group. In addition, the animals won’t live in the center, they will only be brought in for events.
The store’s soft opening will be Saturday.