Hitchin man left ‘devastated’ after cats poisoned by anti-freeze

A MAN from Hitchin has been left “devastated”, after his two cats were poisoned from anti-freeze within weeks of each other.

Michael Briggs, of Heathfield Road, lost his first cat, 14-year-old Georgie at the beginning of January.

Three weeks later, his cat Bow, who was just two-years-old, had to be put down.

Tests revealed that they had both been killed by anti-freeze poisoning, possibly deliberately.

“This is such a terrible thing to happen, they were both beautiful cats and they died an agonising death,” said Mr Briggs.

“We just want to warn other people of the dangers of anti-freeze and its devastating effect on animals.

“This may have been just an accident, but we want to raise awareness to prevent it happening again.”

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Georgie returned home one morning before collapsing on the kitchen floor, where he later died.

At the time, Mr Briggs had no idea what had caused his beloved cat’s death, but noticed that he was foaming at the mouth with his tongue hanging out.

Three weeks later, Bow returned home displaying the same symptoms. Mr Briggs rushed him to the vets, where an examination revealed he had been poisoned with anti-freeze. His condition deteriorated so quickly that he had to be put down to prevent him suffering further.

Ethylene gycol, the chemical found in some household brands of anti-freeze, has potentially lethal consequences when ingested by cats.

The RSPCA has been made aware of the incident and is appealing for more information as well as for people to take care when using the substance.

“Many of us are not aware of just how toxic anti-freeze is, so it is important that people take care when using, storing or disposing of it,” said RSPCA inspector Kim Lawrence.

“We would appeal to anyone who has information about this incident to contact us.”

Under the Animal Welfare Act, those found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal could face a �20,000 fine and/or a six months imprisonment.

Anyone with any information on the poisoning can contact the RSPCA on 0300 1234 999.