A DEVASTATED cat lover is warning fellow pet owners to be on their guard after three of her beloved felines died from antifreeze poisoning.
Three of Linda Travers’s cats have passed away within three months of each other due to the effects ethylene glycol, an odourless, colourless, syrupy-sweet liquid used in many industrial products.
Two year old brothers Felix and Gizmo and six year old Dexter all suffered with kidney failure as a result of ingesting the toxic ingredient.
Their owner fears her pets may have been deliberately targeted, and the anti-freeze left out purposely where they would find it and eat it.
Linda, from Moortown, said: “I feel like I’m being targeted because I have a lot of cats.
“I still have four other cats but I’m frightened to death to let them out in case the same thing happens to them.”
Her concerns have been backed up by a local vet, following an increased number of deaths from the toxic ingredient.
Staff at White Cross Vets are asking pet lovers to sign a petition that will force manufacturers to add a bittering agent to anti-freeze.
Rod Beardshall, clinic director at White Cross Vets in Guiseley, said: “Because of its sweet taste, anti-freeze is especially appealing to pets. But just one teaspoon is enough to kill a cat and a tablespoon will kill a dog. We see too many poisoned pets across our practices every year who are in distress after swallowing antifreeze either as a terrible accident or a malicious act of cruelty. However, these cases could be prevented if anti-freeze wasn’t so sweet tasting to pets.”
Figures from the Veterinary Poisons Information Service revealed that Ethylene Glycol poisoning is the most common cause of death in more than 200,000 pets. Ninety per cent of cats that swallow antifreeze die as a result.
Symptoms of anti-freeze poisoning include vomiting, drowsiness and appearing drunk and uncoordinated.
A spokesperson for the RSPCA said: “The RSPCA is extremely saddened and deeply concerned to hear of any spate of suspected antifreeze poisonings of cats. If you suspect that your cat has been poisoned you must take it to a vet immediately. If anyone has any evidence to support allegations of deliberate poisoning of these well-loved pets then we urge them to contact the RSPCA’s national cruelty line on 0300 1234 999.”