Mystery surrounds horrific dog death
Veterinary scientists are stumped as to why a dog suffered a horrific death after a walk in an Auckland park last week.
The nine-month-old boxer was taken for a walk at Waiatarua Reserve, near Remuera, but minutes after getting home to their Glendowie property the dog's health deteriorated.
The frantic owner - who was too traumatised to discuss the event - banged on her neighbour's door as her pet's condition plummeted.
Suzie Kebbell was stunned by the sight on her doorstep.
"It was vomiting, diarrhoea-ing, foaming at the mouth and there was this screaming," she said.
"I'm a nurse and I've never seen anything so horrific."
The animal was snapping and too dangerous to load into a vehicle so Kebbell called the SPCA, who contacted the animal control team.
By the time they arrived, the dog was semi-conscious and having seizures.
A short time later he died.
He was taken to the New Zealand Veterinary Pathology lab at Auckland Zoo but after an autopsy was completed, staff were still scratching their heads as to the cause of death.
Kebbell said the boxer was seen near a dead duck at the reserve, which led her to think it may have died from botulism - a paralytic illness that typically starts with the muscles of the face and then spreads towards the limbs.
The lab said that was highly unlikely but could not rule it out.
Auckland Council immediately sent staff to inspect the park for dead animals and checks have continued since, without anything being found.
Warning signs have been erected and the council was awaiting water tests to come back.
Payment for the autopsy was still being considered by a council spokeswoman, who would not rule out the owner having to pay for the procedure.
Earlier this month the council limited the use of a rat and possum poison after Remuera resident Tracey Poole claimed her cat Jasper nearly died after ingesting it.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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