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Police Stumped In Search For St. Paul Dog Poisoner

Dog owners in St. Paul, MN, have been warned: you let your dog off the leash and you may never see it again.

After several animals earlier in the summer were rushed to the local veterinarian, sick from rat poison, St. Paul’s Frogtown residents are being warned of the threat once again. On two new occasions, bread laced with rat poison has been found near yards where dogs live. The most recent incident was reported by a man on the 1200 block of Minnehaha, according to TwinCities.com.

“In the past it was biscuits, so it would be a little different,” said Sgt. Mike Ernster, a St. Paul police spokesman.

Eight dogs were poisoned by the biscuits over the summer, with three later succumbing to poor health issues. One of the first to fall ill was an Italian Greyhound named Jet, owned by Kelsey Jurek.

“I was praying it was an isolated incident, but there are community reports of something like 12 to 13 dogs now, kind of all with the same M.O.,” Jurek told TwinCities.com in August 2016. “It’s sickening. My first thought goes to what happens when it’s not a dog who finds a biscuit in a yard, but a small child?”

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Jurek’s neighbor’s dog was poisoned as well. And while there have been no individuals linked to the case yet, even if a suspect was prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, the charge would never be more serious than a gross misdemeanor.

“The fact that it’s really kind of just a slap on the wrist is sickening in itself,” Jurek said.

Sgt. Ernster has urged local pet owners to take a lap in the yard before letting their animals out unsupervised, and if anything unusual is found, they are to call the police.

“If you see anybody walking in a neighbor’s yard that doesn’t belong there, if you see them in an alleyway, anything suspicious, throwing items into a yard, please call the police department and let us know so we can get out there and possible identify the person that’s responsible for this,” Ernster said.

Signatures are being collected for a petition to list animal abusers on a registry, in hopes that it would protect the lives of animals living in close vicinity to the abusers. Follow this link or click the button below to sign the petition and tell the head of the USDA, Thomas Vilsack, to improve our treatment of animals.

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Matthew Russell is a West Michigan native and with a background in journalism, data analysis, cartography and design thinking. He likes to learn new things and solve old problems whenever possible, and enjoys bicycling, going to the dog park, spending time with his daughter, and coffee. Find more about Matthew on his personal website.