York & North Yorkshire

'Nidderdale cocktail' linked to dog's poison death

Pateley Bridge Image copyright Google
Image caption The dogs were out for a walk with their owner in Nidderdale, near Pateley Bridge, when they became ill

Two dogs that became seriously ill after a countryside walk had ingested a combination of drugs police have nicknamed the "Nidderdale cocktail".

The spaniels fell ill after a walk near Pateley Bridge, North Yorkshire, in April. Vets were only able to save one of them.

Forensic tests concluded the dog that died had four pesticides in its system.

The combination of toxins has been linked to the deaths of three birds of prey in the area since 2016.

The poisons found in the dog included a significant quantity of bendiocarb, along with smaller quantities of chloralose, isofenphos and carbofuran.

Chloralose is licensed for use in England in a low concentration as a rodenticide, but the other three substances are banned.

Tests concluded that exposure to these pesticides most likely caused the dog's death.

Image copyright RSPB
Image caption A buzzard found dead in March had been poisoned with chloralose

The same combination of four poisons have been found to cause the deaths of two red kites and a buzzard in Nidderdale, with other cases of poisoned birds of prey in the area involving one or more of the chemicals involved.

Chloralose was linked to the death of a buzzard in the Yorkshire Dales in March.

Insp Matt Hagen, from North Yorkshire Police, said: "The fact we have seen this same combination of chemicals, the 'Nidderdale cocktail' as it is sometimes known, also cause the death of birds of prey in this same location would indicate that the poisons have been deliberately left in a place where they could be found by wildlife and unfortunately in this case, domestic pets."

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