Family devastated by cat poisonings

A family has been left devastated after two pets died from anti-freeze poisoning, which they suspect was left out deliberately to kill them.

Richard Minnis, of Elder Way, Stevenage called the police and the RSPCA after two of his four cats had to be put down within days after vets diagnosed lethal anti-freeze poisoning. A next door neighbour’s cat with the same symptoms also had to be put down.

“One of my cats went down with it on the Thursday night,” the 53-year-old said. “We took her to the vets on Thursday night. Then on the Saturday we got a phone call to say that it’s best if she was put down.

“Then my other cat – my son said to me ‘the cat is not moving around very much’. You know what cats are like – they just like lying in the sun and I thought it was that. Then she was sick.

“My daughter works at a vets in Beds. She took her over to there. They did the same tests as at Great Ashby, they came back exactly the same. She was put down on the following Wednesday.

He added: “My next door neighbour’s cat also went down ill. She took her cat to another vet in Stevenage, that came back with the same thing. The neighbour’s cat was put down on the Thursday.

“We have had to have the three cats put down. The cats only go out in the neighbourhood. I have suspicions that someone left it out on purpose. It’s strange that three cats have gone down within eight days of each other. It’s not coincidence.

Most Read

“I should say it’s someone who’s garden they’ve gone into and they don’t like cats. Maybe spray their hose at them, but not kill them. I really think it’s quite bad.

“I reported it to the police and the RSPCA. The police could do nothing much unless we could come up with the name or someone and then they could investigate it more.

“The RSPCA said they get thousands of calls a year about cats being poisoned.

“They were lovely cats. The black and white one she used to come and sleep on my wife’s and my bed. All my kids are cut up about it.”

The RSPCA said the chemical ethylene glycol, found in some brands of antifreeze, has potentially lethal consequences when ingested by cats. A spokesman said cats seem to enjoy the taste, but can soon suffer agonising deaths. She urged anyone with any information about the poisonings to call the cruelty line on 0300 1234 999.

A police spokesman also asked for anyone with information to contact officers on 0845 3300222.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter