Strychnine killed two Porter Creek dogs; third recovering from apparent poisoning

A Porter Creek dog is recovering after exhibiting the signs of being poisoned on Sunday, only two weeks after two other dogs on the same street died from ingesting strychnine. 

A Porter Creek dog is recovering after exhibiting the signs of being poisoned on Sunday, only two weeks after two other dogs on the same street died from ingesting strychnine.

Roreigh Eftoda lives on Tamarack Drive. Her two-year-old Husky, Trigger, started exhibiting symptoms of strychnine poisoning after he came inside on Sunday morning.

“He was breathless and agitated, it looked like he was drunk,” she said.

“I thought he was just restless because he’d slept all night and didn’t want to sleep during the day. But he wouldn’t come up the stairs.

He stumbled over and had a seizure. It’s probably the most horrific thing I’ve ever experienced.”

Eftoda said she immediately suspected strychnine because his pupils became very large and he was hyperventilating.

The poison is an odorless, colorless crystalline powder that affects the nervous system by causing uncontrolled firing of the nerves, which can result in death.

Trigger was rushed over to Alpine Veterinary Medical Centre, where they gave him a 50 per cent chance of survival.

Eftoda estimates he’d had about 20 seizures by the time they arrived.

Vets pumped his stomach and found what looked like raw hamburger meat, Eftoda said.

They asked her to search her property for any toxins, but none were found.

Trigger survived but sustained some injuries to his tongue from the seizures.

Now, Eftoda is afraid to bring him home. He’s recovering at her parents’ home in Riverdale.

“I’m scared this person is coming back,” she said of the suspected culprit.

“Trigger is the nicest, friendliest dog who doesn’t have a single mean bone in his body. I feel very violated and very unsafe.

“You’re throwing strychnine in my backyard. I’ve talked to a few neighbours about getting the neighbourhood watch back together. People won’t stand for this.”

Results from Trigger’s toxicology tests aren’t back yet but are expected in the next few weeks, she added.

Jordi Mikeli-Jones, president of Kona’s Coalition, said this has been an ongoing problem for more than a decade.

“We’ve heard over the years about dogs being poisoned,” she said.

“We know somebody knows something. My concern is what if a child picks up that cookie or that hamburger meat?

“What if this person keeps doing this?”

Yesterday, bylaw officers were visiting homes in Porter Creek to notify residents of the poisonings.

In a news release, they confirmed that a pair of Corgis had died from strychnine poisoning on or around March 15.

“Dog owners are reminded to always be vigilant of what their animals could be ingesting when they are away from their property, or if there is anything suspicious in their yard,” it said.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact bylaw services at 668-8317 or the RCMP at 667-5555.

Contact Myles Dolphin at

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