Hunt on for dog baiters

FOR the third time in as many weeks, a young South Grafton couple's dogs have been baited.

And the owners are now calling on their neighbours for help in identifying the perpetrators and to dob them into police.

Natasha Harris said the first incident occurred during the July Racing Carnival.

"We came home about midnight and John was showing a friend the dogs," she said.

"They ran up to him and they were fine. But five minutes later he went out and one of them was fitting."

That was the first instance where the six month old Stafford shires, Zina and Zorro, have been baited.

On Friday they found a meaty bone in the backyard and, despite it being taken from the dogs before it could be fully consumed, they had taken enough bait for another serious attack of fitting.

"I have a 10 month old daughter if she had taken it it could have been fatal. Someone could have been on a murder charge."

She said the dogs, which were fenced in, were quiet and had not posed a problem to anyone.

"We have only been here a few weeks," she said.

"About six weeks ago another dog around here died, but we are not sure if it was poisoned."

Veterinary surgeon, John Russell, who treated the pets, said he had no doubt they had been baited with strychnine, which was once used for baiting feral animals.

"It has been banned for something like 50 years," he said.

He said that after taking strychnine baits, dogs muscles became over-excited in a tetanic spasm.

The two dogs were anaesthetised until the poison passed.

Anyone with information that may assist inquiries should contact Grafton police.

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