Pete and Jo-Ann Mitischev play with their German Shepherd Belle in their back yard in Chilliwack. The couple's other dog

Pete and Jo-Ann Mitischev play with their German Shepherd Belle in their back yard in Chilliwack. The couple's other dog

Dog poisoning shocks Chilliwack neighbourhood

German shepherd died Wednesday after chewing on mysterious rawhide sticks

A Chilliwack couple want to warn dog owners after their German shepherd, Ben, died of an apparent poisoning on Wednesday.

Pete and Jo-Ann Mitischev are devastated at the loss of one of their two beloved animals, and they don’t understand why anyone would intentionally do such a thing.

“It just put me into shock,” Pete Mitischev told the Times Thursday. “It’s heartbreaking.”

Mitischev arrived to his downtown home Wednesday afternoon only to find two-year-old Ben bleeding from the mouth and the anus.

“I didn’t know what to do,” he said. “I made sure he was still breathing, and I called my wife to come home to take the dog to the vet.”

After trying two veterinarians that couldn’t take Ben immediately, they took the dog to Family Pet Hospital in Sardis.

“The took one look at the dog and said ‘This looks like poisoning,'” he said.

The dog was tested for canine parvovirus, which can cause similar symptoms, but it came back negative.

Back at home, Mitischev found two rawhide sticks that had been tossed into his fenced in driveway, apparently from the back alley behind his Mayfair Avenue home.

“I noticed these and my good dog (Belle) came out, went up to the rawhide sticks and immediately turned around and ran in the other direction,” he said. “I thought, something is wrong with these sticks.”

Mitischev wants to be clear that he does not have 100 per cent proof that the dog was poisoned, but all signs are pointing that way.

While it would be impossible to justify the poisoning of any dog, Mitischev also pointed out the animal control has never had a complaint about his dog, and all his neighbours are mortified about what happened.

“All my neighbours were worried sick,” he said. “Our dog is kept inside at night, they are in a pen inside our fenced yard if we aren’t home then we have a six-foot fence. I walk them daily with a double leash.

“I think it’s some sick person.”

Mitischev called the RCMP who have started a file. He has also spoken with Fraser Valley District Animal Control and the SPCA.

He said he was told by the SPCA that they don’t have the resources to test the rawhide for poison. And animal control can’t do anything since no bylaws were broken.

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