RSPCA warns pet owners to remain ‘vigilant’ after 9 suspected cat poisonings in Worcestershire - symptoms
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The RSPCA is urging pet owners to be vigilant after another cat has died from suspected poisoning. The warning has been issued after seven-month-old tabby cat Kovu tragically died with a vet confirming poisoning - following a spate of deaths last year.
Kovu’s owner Ellen Butler, who lives in Worcestershire also lost her one-year-old black cat Minnie in similar circumstances last November. This came at a time when the RSPCA was responding to a spate of cat deaths in the area.
Additionally, three cats from the same household sadly died in suspicious circumstances in Prospect Road North, Redditch while two, six-month-old kittens were also said to have died suddenly on the same road. Another incident was also reported to the charity by a resident in nearby Huins Close - the same street where Kovu was later poisoned - after a number of his cats exhibited seizures and passed away before they could take them to a vet.
These poisonings followed a further incident in August last year, where another householder had to have his cat put to sleep, with a vet noting that the animal’s throat and insides had been burnt. The most recent incident this month took place around May 8.
Devastated owner Ellen said it was “absolutely terrifying” that it had happened to her second cat.
She said: “After what happened to Minnie last year, I thought by the time Kovu was ready to go out everything would be fine. It is so shocking. Kovu wasn’t a big walker and he didn’t go far. He liked being at home. It makes you feel something is wrong for it to happen again.”
RSPCA inspector Emily Cheeseman, who is investigating the incident, said: “We are very sad to hear there has been another cat death in this area and our thoughts go out to Kovu and his owner. A vet has confirmed that blood test results were consistent with poisoning - but they were unable to say by what exactly.”
The RSPCA is now issuing an appeal for information and is urging the local community to be vigilant and responsible when storing chemicals and hazardous substances.
Emily added: “Following this incident, we’re reminding motorists to be careful and ensure chemicals like this are stored securely, and leaks from cars are addressed. If you have any hazardous materials in outbuildings please make sure they are locked away.
“We don’t know if this incident - or the others - were deliberate or a tragic accident - but responsible steps like this can help keep animals safe within any community.
“Poisoning an animal on purpose is a criminal offence under the Animal Welfare Act, and we would urge anyone who has information about these cases to contact the RSPCA, in confidence, on 0300 1234 999 and quote number 1070537.”
Cat poisoning - symptoms
Anyone fearing their cat may have been poisoned should try and remain calm, move the cat away from the source and contact a vet straight away. Signs of poisoning can be seen anything from 30 minutes after an animal has ingested the chemical, though it can be two or three days before signs of kidney failure are seen.
Symptoms can include one, or several of the following:
- Seeming depressed or sleepy
- Appearing drunk and uncoordinated
- Difficulty breathing