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Dog Dies, Kids Endangered after Owner Ignores Plight of Desperate Neighbor

KPIX-TV 5 - San Francisco, California (USA) - April 26, 2005

Pets Poisoned in San Jose Neighborhood

On picture-perfect Iris Court in San Jose's Willow Glen District, someone is poisoning pets.

Holly Kollenborn says it started more than a year ago with threatening notes posted on her back gate. "The first note said, 'Your dog was barking. If you don't do something about it, I will,'" she said. "The second note said, 'Your dog was barking. If it happens again, I'll kill your dog.'"

Then two weeks ago, Kollenborn found herself rushing Jackson -- her four-year-old purebred Cavalier Spaniel -- to the pet hospital. He had eaten canned dog food a stranger left for him in a zip-lock baggy in his backyard.

"They discovered he was poisoned with antifreeze," said Kollenborn. "There was antifreeze mixed in with the canned dog food." For Jackson, it was a slow, agonizing death.

"He was having liver and kidney problems, so I had to put him down," Kollenborn said.

Police started investigating and found something of a pattern: other neighbor's pets have been threatened and/or poisoned off and on over the past seven years on Iris Court. One woman's retriever got a threatening note. A cat was another recent victim.

"She had some type of chemical in her system similar to rat poison," the cat owner said. "We caught it early so she didn't die. She had a few blood transfusions."

Kollenborn admits her dog was a barker.

"I'm pretty disappointed this person didn't call animal control or contact me directly, instead of doing something like this," she said.

But what makes this even more surprising is that the neighborhood is full of kids and pets -- it's the type of place where people don't expect anything bad to happen.

"If someone puts out some poisoned meat or poisoned dog food, it's possible a child could happen upon it, eat it, and you're talking about serious charges here," said Sgt. Nick Muyo of the San Jose Police Department.

This page is part of Violence in the News,
which is a component of the Barking Dog News and