Neighbors trying to save eight puppies from poisoning by fish treat them with antifreeze, claim second death
Local authorities in an Oregon county were on Wednesday facing mounting complaints from residents frustrated at the lack of information about an investigation into the death of eight puppies they were trying to save.
Police are investigating the deaths of the eight Siberian huskies – believed to be crossbred dogs or mixed breeds – on Sunday. The puppies were found dead on a West Linn road when the owners went to collect them.
Two people tried to give the dogs antifreeze to try to save them, police said. A second dog died when the women were finally able to get the animals to an emergency vet clinic.
“It’s probably going to be a big investigation,” said West Linn police Captain Michael Long. “We don’t know exactly what happened. We haven’t given a name yet to who was responsible.”
It is unusual for police to file charges against locals, but the investigation may hinge on the individual’s identity.
“People assume that if someone goes out and says they’re giving a dog antifreeze, we’ll suspect that that person is responsible,” Long said. “Our biggest fear is we could charge someone because the guy says he was giving an antifreeze to a puppy and it apparently didn’t work.”
Police said the dogs were not tethered, but they declined to comment on whether they had evidence to suggest the puppies were poisoned intentionally. But they said there was one key clue to go on.
“One of the [puppies] was blind, and we’re asking people who own blind dogs, if you do have one, to get your dog checked out to make sure it’s safe for all the other dogs to be around,” Long said.
West Linn is a west coast suburb of Portland with a population of just over 33,000, a big number of whom apparently just happened to be living along the road. As the deaths have garnered nationwide attention, a growing number of people have started contacting authorities to tell them they believe they may know the dogs’ killer.
“We’ve gotten a lot of tips since the report of the dogs,” Long said. “Some say the owner isn’t home. It could be that they went out and got some candy and came back after getting lost and she didn’t see the dogs.”
Long said that one man called saying he saw a man throw a puppy off a bridge and think he saw someone doing the same thing on a bridge across the Willamette river, which borders West Linn.
Most people have told the police they saw a group of people dumping the puppies along the road.