A devastated couple from Warwick are warning other dog owners to be vigilant after their dog was suspectedly poisoned.
Jo Ciriani and Graham Todd have spent the weekend worrying about their much-loved Beagle Harvey after he became ill after going for a walk by the Warwick Racecourse and St Mary’s lands.
The couple believe Harvey became ill on Saturday evening after potentially eating rat poison on their regular walk.
He became lethargic and had a lack of appetite, and then on Sunday morning the couple found blood all over the kitchen floor and Harvey extremely unwell.
The beloved pet was rushed to Avonvale vets and has since had a blood transfusion and is being treated with Vitamin K and an IV drip.
The couple returned to Warwick Racecourse on Sunday morning to investigate the area and found and an open rat trap next to one of the horse jumps. They then posted their findings on social media.
When the pair returned later in afternoon the trap had been removed.
Miss Ciriani said: “We are devastated at Harvey’s condition and hoping he’ll pull through treatment. We want to warn as many people as we can about the traps at Warwick Racecourse – it’s a popular dog walking route and we would hate another animal to go through what Harvey has gone through. Whilst dogs are not allowed on the course itself, the trap we found and filmed was open and at the side of the track – right next to where we walk.”
Andre Klein, Warwick Racecourse general manager, said: “In response to the comments raised over the weekend on social media, we thought it necessary to provide a statement clarifying the situation regarding baited traps on the racecourse.
“Firstly, on a personal level we are very sad to hear the news regarding the poor health of a dog due to the possible consumption of poison at our race track.
“As dog lovers and owners and regular users of St Marys Land, we are naturally concerned and hope the dog makes a speedy and full recovery.
“There is only one baited trap maintained on the race track itself. This is on the fence near the Sainsburys corner and is the one identified in the video. This box is laid, secured by our contractor, Conquer. Upon inspection by our contractors, it is apparent that the box has unfortunately been tampered with.
“The bait trap has been placed in this location as we have an on-going issue with rats chewing through ropes that secure important components of the fence.
“The amount of poison used, we have been informed is not enough to kill a dog, but would be enough to make it ill.
The trap has since been removed as a precautionary measure.
“We would like to remind all St Mary’s Land visitors that the racetrack itself is not to be accessed other than on the public footpaths that traverse it. It is an area under constant management for the purposes of racing and therefore is not necessarily a particularly safe environment.
“We appreciate that it is hard to control dogs who run on to the track but it would be appreciated if everyone could make an effort to keep their dogs exclusively on the parkland and the track that runs the inner circumference of the course.”