RSPCA Cymru has issued an all-too-familiar warning to local pet owners, after three more cats were poisoned.
The latest incident has seen three cats from the same Risca household die from suspected poisoning, with two confirmed as a result of anti-freeze.
The three died between Monday 17 April and Tuesday 2 May, taking the number of reported cat poisonings across Caerphilly County Borough to a staggering 14 since September 2016. In that eight-month period, pets have been poisoned in Risca, Senghenydd, Pontllanfraith, Crumlin, Newbridge, Caerphilly, and Markham.
In March, the animal charity called the spate of incidents “deeply worrying.”
RSPCA Cymru is urging anyone with any information to contact the charity, with calls to the inspectorate appeal line treated in confidence.
RSPCA inspector Emma Smith said: “Our sincerest condolences go to the owner of Squirt, Meow and Charlie. Losing pets in this way must be absolutely heartbreaking.
“It isn’t clear whether these incidences in the Risca area were deliberate, or not – but they are clearly a cause for concern.
“We’d urge anyone with information about them to contact our inspectorate appeal line on 0300 123 8018.
“Local cat owners should also be cautious at this time. If a cat poisoning is feared, it’s really important that owners stay calm, move their pet from any suspected poisonous source, immediately contact a vet and follow their advice.”
The trio’s owner, Gem Walker, added: “Meow was my five-year-old daughter’s cat, who has speech problems. My daughter at one time could only say the word “Meow” – hence the cat’s name. She is devastated.”
The animal charity is also urging people to check where they keep their pesticides and chemicals, including antifreeze, and to make sure it is secure and out of the way of cats. Car radiators should also be checked for leaks.
Potential signs of poisoning could include vomiting, seeming depressed or sleepy, appearing drunk and uncoordinated, seizures, difficulty breathing, increased thirst, increased urination. It can take up to two or three days from ingestion before signs of kidney failure are seen.
Anyone who suspects that their cat has been poisoned should take it to a vet immediately. Poisoning a cat deliberately is a criminal offence.