Dog owners suspect poisoning in suspicious canine deaths

By Jill Sperling
May 24, 2017 - 5:00pm Updated: May 24, 2017 - 6:20pm

KAMLOOPS — Rumblings of several dog poisonings in Brocklehurst have put dog owners on edge.

Within the last two years, five dogs are suspected of being killed by rat poison within a one-block radius. 

WATCH: Full report by Jill Sperling

Ruth Dyck was the owner of one of those dogs, a young German Shephard named Sprocket. 

"He was a pretty big part of our family," Dyck said. "He'd always come mountain biking and hiking with us, and pretty much everything we did he was there." 

In December, the lively canine got sick after a night outside. 

"He came up pretty stiff, and all of his limbs were very rigid, and his jaw was locked shut, and I thought it was obviously strange and different for him."

A vet determined Sprocket had ingested something that didn't agree with his body. Despite efforts to save him, Sprocket died by the next morning. 

At the time, Dyck was living on Holt Street in Brocklehurst. She said she learned of several other dog deaths in the neighbourhood. 

"Just recently I was contacted by someone in the neighbourhood, and she said the house across the street from us, that their dog had been poisoned this week," Dyck said. "I had never met the lady, but I do distinctly remember her little German Shephard growing up. I remember them bringing it in. I'd see them walk around the neighbourhood. He was a pretty cute little guy too." 

Posts on social media suggest someone may be throwing rat poison into backyards, intentionally poisoning the dogs. 

The BC SPCA recommends dog owners keep a close eye on their pets, keeping them leashed while on walks, and checking backyards for rat poison pellets or toys that don't belong. 

Kamloops SPCA branch manager Alyssa Kyllo says anyone who suspects their dog has been poisoned should call the Animal Cruelty Reporting Hotline at  1-855-622-7722.

"They're able to catalog all of the reports that they get, and if they are noticing a trend, or a certain area, or a number of events that are happening then they can notify our constables in the area, and then our constables can look into it and see if it's something that they can follow up on, or find the person who's doing it," Kyllo said. 

While Dyck will never be able to replace Sprocket, she does have a new dog, Odus, and Sprocket's death has made her much more cautious with the new pup. 

"When you have your dog, you don't realize what you've lost until it's gone."

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