Warning to cat owners as cats die from poisoning in Worcestershire

Both Mini and Kovu have died from poisoning in the past six months. Credit: RSPCA

Cat owners are being warned to be vigilant after another cat has died from being poisoned in Worcestershire.

Seven-month-old tabby, Kovu, died on 8 May with blood tests confirming he'd been poisoned.

Kovu's owner, Ellen Butler from Redditch, also lost her one-year-old black cat Minnie in November last year, in similar circumstances.

The RSPCA says it was responding to a number of similar incidents with cats being killed with poison late last year.

Three cats from the same household died in Prospect Road North, while two kittens were also said to have died suddenly in the same road.

A further incident was also reported to the charity by a resident in nearby Huins Close - the same street where Kovu was later poisoned - after a number of his cats had seizures and died before they could take them to a vet.

These poisonings followed a further incident in August last year, where another cat living in Prospect Road North had to be put to sleep, with a vet noting that the cat’s throat and insides had been burnt.

Vets have been unable to confirm what exactly the poison is. Credit: PA Images

Devastated owner Ellen said it was “absolutely terrifying” that it had happened to her second cat.

She said: “After what happened to Minnie last year, I thought by the time Kovu was ready to go out everything would be fine. It is so shocking. Kovu wasn’t a big walker and he didn’t go far. He liked being at home.

“It makes you feel something is wrong for it to happen again.”

RSPCA inspector Emily Cheeseman, who is investigating the incident, said: “We are very sad to hear there has been another cat death in this area and our thoughts go out to Kovu and his owner.

“A vet has confirmed that blood test results were consistent with poisoning - but they were unable to say by what exactly.”

The RSPCA is now issuing an appeal for information and is urging the local community to be vigilant and responsible when storing chemicals and hazardous substances.

Emily added: “Following this incident we're reminding motorists to be careful and ensure chemicals like this are stored securely, and leaks from cars are addressed. If you have any hazardous materials in outbuildings please make sure they are locked away. 

“We don't know if this incident - or the others - were deliberate or a tragic accident - but responsible steps like this can help keep animals safe within any community.

“Poisoning an animal on purpose is a criminal offence under the Animal Welfare Act, and we would urge anyone who has information about these cases to contact the RSPCA, in confidence, on 0300 1234 999 and quote number 1070537.” 

The RSPCA says anyone fearing their cat may have been poisoned should try and remain calm, move the cat away from the source and contact a vet straight away.

Symptoms of poisoning can include vomiting, sleepiness, seizures and difficulty breathing.

The signs can be seen anything from 30 minutes after an animal has ingested the chemical, though it can be two or three days before signs of kidney failure are seen.