Animals

Dog baiting takes a sinister turn in Mullaloo

Investigations are continuing to find the person who left a poisoned cake this week in an animal-friendly park in Mullaloo.

The chocolate cake laced with green slug pellets was found in Charonia Park.

Chris Gibson, who owns The Yellow Bourbon Cafe Shop, was told about a suspect package in the park by a local man on Tuesday.

Mr Gibson went to see if he could find anything and was horrified by what he saw.

Mullaloo cafe owner Chris Gibson. Photo supplied by Chris Gibson

“It was a plastic container with mud cake in there and little pellets pushed into it and around it,” he said.

He wrapped the cake up in a bag and disposed of it.

He immediately turned to Facebook to warn locals of the possible threat to animals.

“I decided to go and have a look down at the park and there was one right there. I grabbed it and thought that was shocking and put a post on Facebook. Told everyone I knew,” he said.

Mr Gibson contacted the police and rangers who were unable to help.

“No-one seemed to know who to talk to and that was it. On Saturday a ranger visited the park,” he said.

Mr Gibson said two previous incidents occurred recently when a park user found more bait and turned it into IGA who reported it to Joondalup Council.

“An old guy came in and told me about a bait in one part of the car parks. He just handed it into the IGA near me,” Mr Gibson said.

“If you’re baiting animals, it’s usually with meat. It’s a bit weird because children would think, oh, free cake it’s just shocking.”

RSPCA WA CEO David Van Ooran said pet poisoning is becoming more common.

“Poisoning or baiting is an awful way for a pet to die. We see cases of suspected poisoning reported quite often,” he said.

Mr Van Ooran offered some helpful tips to protect pets from serious danger.

“It’s important to be vigilant and report any suspicious behavior you see. If you’re out on a walk, keep your dogs on a leash at all times,” he said.

He said animal poisoning should not be overlooked because incidents like the Mullaloo one can result in hefty fines and imprisonment.

“This is a serious offence and under the Animal Welfare Act can incur a fine up to $50,000 or imprisonment for up to five years,” he said.

Chris Gibson encourages the community to look out for each other especially pets and children.

“Be careful and look out for what’s around you. You never know what people are doing. All the animals are quite lovely,” he said.

“It’s also children who have to be careful now because if they’re using cake instead of the conventional means of baiting a dog.”

Report baiting to the RSPSCA Cruelty Hotline on 1300 278 3589.

Hear more from Chris Gibson here.