By Mitchell Clarke
A number of family pets living within the same residential street have fallen dead – all within two weeks.
Four cats and a dog within Blue Gum Court in Silver Gums Estate, Pakenham, have perished and their heartbroken owners want answers.
In late June, Lauren Power’s cat Bailey suddenly went blind for an unknown reason.
“The vet ran some other tests which showed he was mostly quite healthy and just had some minor abnormalities with his kidney function,“ Ms Power said.
But as Bailey’s condition began to deteriorate, Lauren and her family set out for answers and spoke with neighbours.
On 10 June, it’s believed a neighbour’s cat passed away after going blind and vomiting. On the weekend of 15/16 June another neighbour lost their dog Larna after she suffered bloating.
In the same 10-day period, a third cat on the street also went blind and passed away, before a three-year-old cat was euthanased after suffering blood clotting and paralysis.
“With four pets deceased in a 12-day period and my cat possibly to be the fifth, this is just far too coincidental,“ Ms Power said.
“I believe it to be an environmental issue such as weed spraying or something similar.“
Eventually the Power family was forced to make the heartbreaking decision to say goodbye to their Bailey, after his quality of life continued to decline.
Dejected, Ms Power has set out for answers, urging relevant authorities to launch an investigation.
“With two dogs and a seven-month-old baby, I am incredibly worried about their health and well-being,“ she said.
“I’m not sure what would come of this but I believe the more awareness we can raise the more likely we are to see if this is occurring in other areas of our community.“
Cardinia Shire Council’s General Manager Infrastructure and Environment Peter Benazic confirmed they hadn’t undertaken any spraying within Blue Gum Court recently.
While Ms Power has urged council to launch an investigation, Cardinia Shire Council has told Star News Group they are not “aware of the deaths” and “are not the responsible investigating body”.
RSPCA Head of Inspectorate Terry Ness has confirmed they have closed the case due to “lack of evidence indicating that any cruelty was involved”.
“RSPCA Victoria relies on the local community to assist in these cases. Even the smallest detail can help us to ascertain the truth as we work toward ending animal cruelty,” Mr Ness said.
“If anyone suspects or knows that their dog or cat has eaten a poison bait, contact your nearest veterinarian immediately. Do not delay action or wait for your pet to exhibit symptoms.”
While Lauren continues to search for answers, she’s recorded any threats to harm cats which were posted online in a Silver Gums Estate Facebook page, but hopes nobody is behind the deaths.
“I’ve had this cat since I was 17, he was my baby, if I found out that someone was doing this intentionally, they should face jail time,“ she said.
“They might just be animals to some people, but to us, they’re our babies and to see them not only die but also suffer, it’s heartbreaking.“