Worthing dog owner’s warning after ‘rat poison’ pellets left in park

A Worthing dog owner has warned other walkers to beware after his pet ingested potentially poisonous pellets left in a park.

Keith Gurney, 67, was walking his dog Barney in Tarring Park yesterday (March 28) when he noticed it eating something in the grass.

Barney the cockerpoo SUS-190329-143322001

Barney the cockerpoo SUS-190329-143322001

Mr Gurney said he ran up to check on the 6-year-old cockerpoo and found a small handful of pellets on the ground.

“I was immediately suspicious because of where they were,” he said.

“So I called another dog walker over to point them out, and she agreed with me. I thought it was better to be safe than sorry and called the vet, who told me to bring Barney in straight away.”

Mr Gurney took Barney and the pellets to Northdale Veterinary Practice in Victoria Road, but surgeons were unable to assess if they were poisonous.

The possible rat poison SUS-190329-143332001

The possible rat poison SUS-190329-143332001

A Google search showed they looked very similar to rat poison, said Mr Gurney, so erring on the side of caution the vets gave Barney medication to empty his stomach.

A spokesman for Northdale Veterinary Practice said the strange location of the pellets was concerning.

“These kind of things are not common, but they are becoming more common,” the spokesman said.

“Barney is the first this year. It’s definitely strange to put rat poison in the middle of the park.

“You hear a lot of nasty things at the minute, but I wouldn’t want to speculate whether it was malicious.

“It’s a very strange place to leave them and they certainly shouldn’t be dropped in the middle of a park.

“We would advise that down owners check what their dog is ingesting, because a lot of people let their dogs wander around and look at things.

“Have a look over the area for signs of anything having been eaten.

“If you think they have, then never wait – you can always do more if the substance is still in the stomach.”

Thankfully, Barney appears to have made a full recovery after his ordeal, but was understandably hungry after his stomach emptying.

Mr Gurney said he did not want to be alarmist, but felt it was important to warn other dog owners of the potential dangers.

He echoed Northdale’s advice of erring on the side of caution and taking your dog to the vet if you fear it could have ingested something harmful.