For six years, Andrew Stolz ran on mountain trails in the company of his beloved German Shepherd, Topaz. (Photo submitted)

$1,000 reward offered after B.C. dog dies of strychnine poisoning

Topaz, a German Shepherd, collapsed while out on a run with her owner

An animal welfare group is offering a $1,000 reward after it was confirmed a dog near Creston died of strychnine poisoning.

Andrew Stolz was out for a run up Mount Cowley in late March with a friend and his German Shepherd, Topaz.

The trio came to the crest of a hill, they saw three golden eagles fly off from a what turned out to be a raccoon carcass with its tail cut off further down the bank.

They kept running, until Topaz dropped to the ground.

Her back leg seized in mid-run,” Stolz said. “She collapsed.”

He thought she might be having a stroke, so he sent his friend to go get his truck.

“I carried her, and she was having horrible seizures. I tried to give her water, but she didn’t want it.”

Topaz took her last breath, suffering an “excruciating” death, and he carried her body back down the trail.

READ MORE: Petition to end B.C. ‘wolf-whacking’ contests gains 60,000 signatures

Later that day, Stolz’s friend’s wife, a dog walker, said a dog in her care recently had to be rushed to the vet after eating strychnine-laced meat.

Stolz went back to the raccoon carcass with a conservation officer, and saw two plastic bags of meat nearby – one eaten.

“Some pieces of meat had slipped down on to the road and Topaz must have got some while we were running.”

Lab tests later confirmed strychnine in the meat. Samples were sent for further testing.

“In my investigation, what I saw at the scene is troubling,” said the officer, James Barber. “If this is a poisoning, it will be very hard to find the culprit and we are going to need the public to help with information.”

Stolz wondered if the meat had anything to do with the Creston rod and gun club’s competition to kill wolves and other predators in an effort to protect farmers’ livestock. Some cattle at ranches across B.C. have been decimated by an overpopulation of wolves over the past decade.

The Fur-Bearers, a B.C.-based non-profit group, is offering a $1,000 reward for information that helps to identify and convict whoever is responsible.

“Strychnine is a horrific way for an animal to die, and it is illegal for use in British Columbia,” said spokesperson Michael Howie. “This was a crime that someone committed knowing full well that they would cause suffering to any animal who came ingested the bait.”

Anyone with information is requested to contact the BC Conservation Service at 1-877-952-7277 or Conservation.Officer.Service@gov.bc.ca.


Email typos to
editor@crestonvalleyadvance.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Firefighters extinguish brush fire near Port Alberni residential area

Fire was discovered in bush off Kitsuksis Creek Trail

BCHL: Battle for Bulldogs’ roster spots heats up as main camp begins

Alberni Valley’s new head coach will get his first look at revamped Jr. A hockey team

BCHL: Alberni Valley Bulldogs add experience to blueline

Jimmy Rayhill commits to Bulldogs as main training camp set to start Aug. 19

Port Alberni cadet learns outdoor skills at Vernon camp

Outdoor skills some of leadership learning activities at annual summer camp

70 years of lifting: Canadian man, 85, could cinch weightlifting championship

The senior gym junkie is on track to win the World Masters Weightlifting championship

U16 B.C. fastpitch team named national champs

Girls went undefeated at national tournament in Calgary

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

Raif Badawi was arrested on June 17, 2012, and was later sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in jail for his online criticism of Saudi clerics

Canadian entrepreneurs turning beer byproduct into bread, cookies and profits

Some breweries turn to entrepreneurs looking to turn spent grain into treats for people and their pets

Canada ‘disappointed’ terror suspect’s British citizenship revoked

Jack Letts, who was dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media, has been detained in a Kurdish prison for about two years

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

B.C. VIEWS: Log exports and my other errors so far in 2019

Plastic bags, legislature overspending turn out differently

Most Read