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  1. West Country (E)

Five cats poisoned in two weeks on one Somerset road

Five cats have been poisoned with antifreeze in a single road in Somerset over the past two weeks, prompting fears it's being done on purpose.

Some owners in Woolavington are now keeping their pets indoors out of fear their animal could be next. Tamsin Wheeler has already lost one cat, Bluebell, and is concerned for the safety of her two other pets.

But Bluebell wasn't the only one. Five cats from this one road in Woolavington in Somerset have died from antifreeze poisoning in the past two weeks - prompting fears that somebody's been doing it deliberately.

Of course there's a chance the cats could have got hold of this antifreeze accidentally and the RSPCA is reminding people to make sure it's stored properly and cleared up if it's spilled but if it was left out on purpose, that's an offence which could lead to a £20,000 fine and up to six months in prison.

For now this family is taking no chances - Max the dog stays shut in the garden and the cats are kept indoors.

Panda doesn't go out so he's safe enough but I'm more worried about Tinkerbell because she likes to come up the shop with me. She doesn't like staying inside She's more of an outdoor cat but I'm just afraid that it's going to happen to her and to other cats around this area.

– Tamsin Wheeler, cat owner

Animal welfare officers say the five cats that were poisoned would have suffered a lot of pain and distress - they're hoping no more have to suffer in the same way.

  1. West Country (E)

Five cats poisoned in two weeks on a Somerset road

Five cats have been poisoned with antifreeze in a single road in Somerset over the past two weeks, prompting fears it's being done on purpose. Some owners in Woolavington are now keeping their pets indoors out of fear.

I could hear her crying and I thought something's not right here. She sounds in distress, she sounds in pain and when I got a chair and looked over at number 3's door, there she was lying there lifeless, unable to move. When I got him to open his back gate to let me in, she was paralysed.

– Tamsin Wheeler, cat owner


Stolen puppy found safe and well

Tilly was reported missing yesterday Credit: Dorset Police

A puppy that was reported stolen in Weymouth has been found safe and well.

Tilly the Staffordshire Bull Terrier puppy was reported missing yesterday - along with an image of the suspected thief. The puppy went missing last month. No arrests have been made, and the puppy has been returned to her owners.

Is there a penguin on the loose in Looe?

Have you seen a penguin on the loose? Credit: Richard Gray/EMPICS Entertainment

A rather unusual sighting is being investigated in Looe this week, after a penguin was apparently spotted on the beach.

A surprised local went into the Looe Tourist Information Centre last Wednesday to say he’d seen the small black and white bird waddling across Hannafore Beach.

A member of staff explained that it was probably a Guillemot or an Oyster Catcher, but the man remains sure of his sighting, having seen penguins in New Zealand.

The Centre has now posted on its Facebook page appealing for any information.

If anybody is up that way enjoying the sunshine today, please keep an eye out for a lost penguin, and if you see it please tell us.

– Looe Tourist Information Centre

VIDEO: police ask children to name puppies

children asked to name police puppies Credit: Devon & Cornwall police

Devon and Cornwall police are asking children to help name their new litter of police puppies.

Competition entrants are being asked to submit their name suggestion along with a Christmas card design - which must begin with the letter 'C'.

The winner will get to meet the puppies. and spend time with a police dog handler.


  1. West Country (E)

The cost of last year's badger cull is revealed

Each badger killed during the culls cost more than £3,000 Credit: PA

It's been revealed that last year's badger cull in Somerset and Gloucestershire cost taxpayers an average of £3,350 for every animal killed.

1,879 animals were killed in the pilot culls - 955 badgers in Somerset and 924 in Gloucestershire. The cullings are aimed at stopping the spread of TB in cattle and cost a total of almost £6.3 million according the Government figures.

DEFRA says the costs were high because of the need to monitor the operation for safety and humaneness.

Ponies prove a care home hit

The Collytown ponies are the perfect height for meeting residents - and the tender loving care works both ways Credit: ITV News

People in care homes in Devon are having some rather unusual visitors.

The Shetland ponies are small enough and friendly enough to visit people in their bedrooms - providing some much-needed TLC.

Care home owner Trevor Atkinson, says that even residents who find it more difficult to communicate, often change when the ponies are brought in.

People who we find hard to engage with as carers respond incredibly well to the ponies, there is something about their presence, something about a large furry animal, big eyes and obviously looking beautiful, they just want to reach out and touch and connect with them and you cansee the joy come into their faces, you can see them light up.

– TREVOR ATKINSON, Westview Care Home, Yelverton
The ponies certainly brought a smile to the face to people staying at Westview Care Home in Yelverton Credit: ITV News

You can watch Claire Manning's report on the day the ponies came to the care home below:

Beavers could be returned to River Otter

The Government has raised the possibility that beavers in Devon could be returned to the wild after they have been tested for disease.

Defra had planned to trap the colony and transfer them to a zoo or wildlife park. It argues they are a non-native, invasive species.

But Friends of the Earth say the Government are now considering allowing them to return to the River Otter.

British beavers were hunted to extinction in Tudor times. Credit: PA
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