One cat has died due to Ithaca area pet poisonings, says SPCA

June 1, 2015 by Mark H. Anbinder

Four cats have been affected and one has died after being brought in with what the SPCA of Tompkins County says are "symptoms pointing towards an intentional poisoning." In a warning to the community on Sunday night, they urged area residents to "Keep your pets indoors when not supervised."

The SPCA of Tompkins County Adoption Center.The SPCA of Tompkins County Adoption Center."Right now it is unclear exactly what's causing the poisoning," SPCA director Jim Bouderau tells 14850 Today. "We are concerned that it is intentional, however it could be due to the disposal of chemicals toxic to cats accidentally, in or around their food source.

Bouderau says the affected cats are members of "a known colony living in the Collegetown area," many of whom have been spayed or neutered through the SPCA's TNR program. This "Trap, Neuter, Return" program allows the SPCA's animal control officers to help keep feral cat populations down by humanely trapping cats and taking them to a veterinary clinic before they're released back to their home environment. This colony is partially cared for by residents in the neighborhood.

"It is unlikely that these cats were poisoned as a result of eating rodents that may have been poisoned themselves," Bouderau tells us, "due to the speed with which the symptoms have been occurring and concentration of cases." He says samples have been sent out for toxicology tests, but the results won't be back for a few days.

Bouderau suggests area pet owners keep an eye on their pets for symptoms that are "neurological in nature," such as stability or balance issues, non-responsiveness, or trembling.

The SPCA urges anyone with information about the poisonings or those who might be behind them to contact humane investigators at 607-319-5067. Anyone who sees a cat they think might have been poisoned should call the SPCA emergency phone at 607-592-6773.

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