Police investigate poisoning of eight cats

2011-09-12 00:00

WHO killed the cats? That’s the question Caryn and Elton Skidmore want answered after eight cats in a feral colony they care for in Mkondeni were killed after being baited with the highly toxic poison Temic on Thursday night.

Five more cats are being treated by a vet and one went missing for a while.

Caryn Skidmore, who with her husband, Elton, runs a business at Roycol Park off Gladys Manzi (Murray) Road, said she was devastated by the deaths of the cats, which live behind the factory.

She said Elton discovered the bodies on Friday morning when he arrived at work.

The couple rushed the surviving cats to a local vet, taking their food, which contained black crystals.

The vet identified the poison as Temic, also known as “Two-step” due to its quick-acting effect.

Skidmore says they have a suspicion of who may have poisoned the cats, as there have been recent complaints about the presence of the cats. She said she has passed information to the police.

The Skidmores have so distraught by the incident that they have even been checking on the remaining cats late at night.

They have been caring for the feral colony of 24 cats for four years, taking them to the vet when they are ill and helping to get them sterilised.

“I really love them,” said Skidmore

“I don’t have children and I am devastated.

“ We know them by name and their personalities,” she added.

They feed them twice a day in the grass area at the back of the factory.

Pietermaritzburg SPCA spokesperson Maureen Vida said they are “appalled that anyone could inflict such suffering on animals”.

She said it is illegal to use Temic, a registered agricultural poison, in this way.

She said the SPCA are awaiting the police investigation and she is optimistic that the SPCA will prosecute the perpetrator under the Animal Protection Act.

Jan Pharazyn, who works closely with the city’s feral cat colonies, said the danger of decimating a well-managed colony like the one being cared for by the Skidmores lies in the fact that as the colony declines, other cats that are not sterilised will move in and the rat population in the area will grow.

The Witness wrote in 2009 about a Temic-laced banana placed in a Hilton resident’s garden and meant for rogue monkeys.

A garden service employee at the banna and died.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant Joey Jeevan said a case of unlawful administration of poison to animals is being investigated.

— stephs@witness.co.za

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.