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TACLOBAN, Philippines – Police in the Northern Samar town of Bobon are probing the alleged mass poisoning of dogs in the town on Wednesday, May 10.
Bobon police chief Captain Paterno Naga Jr. told Rappler in an interview Friday afternoon, May 12, that they were in the process of tracking the person or persons behind the poisoning of dogs.
The police chief said no resident has filed a formal complaint but that personnel confirmed the reported deaths of numerous dogs.
Dozens of netizens from Bobon and former residents of the town have posted about dogs dying after they allegedly consumer poisoned sardines. Stray dogs, as well as pets, were killed.
In an interview with Rappler on May 12, retired government employee Alberto Miranda, a resident of Barangay Sta. Clara, said his pet, Puti was among the victims.
“Puti, we will miss you…. Wara na malambing nga pet,”Miranda had posted on his Facebook page, with a picture of his dog. (Puti, we will miss you. Our loving pet is gone.)
Miranda told Rappler that Puti died together with other dogs on May 10.
“Kada aga nagawas ang amu ayam para umihi, pag balik sa balay nag ‘seizure’ na tapos patay,” Miranda recalled. (Every morning, our dog goes out to urinate. This time, when he came back, he suddenly had a seizure and died soon after.)
He said a friend and pet owner brought her dog to the veterinary department of a local university.
The dog also died but the veterinarian confirmed the sardines it had eaten contained rat poison, he added.
No formal complaints
Miranda estimated that around 30 dogs died In Barangay Sta. Clara alone.
Corpses of poisoned dogs, and even a cat, were also found in othervillages in Bobon, he added, showing Rappler a photograph taken by a relative.
Miranda urged the local government to review the CCTV footage in order to identify the person or people behind the crime.
” May na kuha na CCTV footage, na capture ang usa na lalaki banda ala una sa maagahon, (May 10) naka motor, pero di gud klaro. Nakikita nga sugad nanhuhulog sin sardinas,”’ Miranda said. (CCTV footage captured one man around 1 am, on a motorcycle, but it was not clear. However, you could see him dropping sardines on the street.)
The police chief urged residents to contact their office and provide information to help in the investigation.
“We are verifying the CCTV footage of the nearby areas to identify the suspect. Once their identity is known, they will be arrested,” Naga said.
Rappler tried to contact Mayor Jing Celespara on May 12 and 13 but he has yet to respond. This story will be update once he does.
Residents and former residents, meanwhile, could not contain their anger and sorrow.
“I was scrolling through my newsfeed, my tears just couldn’t stop flowing. I feel sorry for the owners; some of them are pets of those family members na nawala na and these dogs are the only memory that they have from them,” said Gyva Marace.
“There are so many ways to teach locals how to take care of these animals properly and to control the population pero they choose the evil one,” she said. “We have brains better than animals yet we can’t have better solutions for issues like this.” – Rappler.com