“I was out with friends when mum called me, hysterical because Mocha was acting strangely and looked like she was starting to seize. We had just lost my dad less than a year earlier and Mocha had been his little shadow when he was alive.
When I got home she was in a bad way. Her breathing was erratic and she was drifting in and out of seizures. There was no recognition when she looked at us.
We live in a small town far from any vet so I rushed her to the hospital because it was the only option available. I was a mess, I was crying and trying to hold it together to explain to the nurses what was going on, they all knew my dad as he had worked at the hospital. They were there through his palliative journey so they let us in and called the doctor on call. The doctor advised there was little they could do other than give her Valium to try and ease the seizures and make her comfortable as she passed.
We were on the phone to an emergency vet in Perth and they said there was nothing you could do once the 1080 takes hold. All I could do was hold her close and tell her how much we loved her as she died.
All up she was seizing for most of an hour, distressed and confused. I later found out she was one of multiple dogs targeted that night and for the next month, dogs were dying nearly every night. Reports said that 20 dogs died, but in reality, it was closer to 50. In some cases, multiple dogs from the same house died. The majority of those died in an enclosed yard.
In the end we were told that “crows dropped baits in town”. This is unbelievable considering what was going on. There were different baits found too, some were just poisoned meat and some were 1080 baits. It took months for people to stop living in fear that their dog would be the next to die. We never got over it. We hand-raised Mocha from a bottle, delivered her puppies, nursed her in recovery after surgery. Then I had to hold her while she died an awful, pointless death.”