One family lost six cats to antifreeze poisoning

A family has been left heartbroken by the death of their cats through antifreeze poisoning. They believe that an antifreeze poisoner has deliberately killed six of their cats over the past five years. They believe that it is someone local to the area which it has to be said would be a commonsense appraisal because outdoor cats don’t go that far from their home.

Cats poisoned by antifreeze

Cats poisoned by antifreeze

I would suggest that it is probably someone living close by, a neighbour in effect. The RSPCA has launched an investigation into what would be criminal behaviour. Peter and Tami Jenkins of Burntwood, Staffordshire are the owners.

Three of the deaths occurred during the summer months which supports the theory that this is deliberate poisoning. In fact, modern vehicles do not require that the owner tops up the cooling system with antifreeze. Today, vehicle engines have sealed cooling units. You never need to go near the engine with antifreeze.

If a cat dies of antifreeze poisoning, the presumption, in my view, must be that it is a deliberate act by a person who does not like domestic cats on their street.

Mr Jenkins said:

“We are just devastated that this keeps happening. We love having cats and find it so worrying that this has happened time and time again. We have lived here for 15 years and had no issues until five years ago. Sometimes it makes you wonder if someone in the area has got something against cats in general.”

Response: find out who moved into the area five years ago and ask questions.

Black vodka treatment for cat poisoned by anti-freeze

In general, too, there is nothing a veterinarian can do to save the life of a domestic cat who has been poisoned with antifreeze unless the response is very rapid. I do remember on one occasion a veterinarian administering vodka to a poisoned cat and the cat survived as I recall. Vodka is an antidote antifreeze but in the case of these cats it seems that they were euthanised by their veterinarian on each occasion.


I’m compelled to return to that age-old problem of British cat owners letting their cats wander outside. Without in any way excusing the horrendous crime of poisoning domestic cats, this is surely an example where the cats’ owners could have done more to protect their cats. They could have kept them inside while an investigation took place. That would have been the logical way to proceed.

I know that an American cat owner reading this short article will probably be scratching their head wondering why Peter and Tami did not keep their cats inside after the first couple of poisonings.

My two cats broke a snowglobe and both died within days from ethylene glycol (antifreeze) poisoning

Source: Daily Mail

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Michael is retired! He retired at age 57 and at Aug 2018 is approaching 70. He worked in many jobs. The last job he did was as a solicitor practicing general law. He loves animals and is passionate about animal welfare. He also loves photography and nature. He hates animal abuse. He has owned and managed this site since 2007. There are around 13k pages so please use the custom search facility!


One family lost six cats to antifreeze poisoning — 6 Comments

  1. Every few years in our village there are spates of cats being poisoned with antifreeze. Vets usually attribute this to people being careless when topping up their car coolant systems. This is vets sitting on the fence deliberately. As the article factually states, modern cars do not require/allow this DIY action.

    In the UK there are fewer and fewer old banger type cars on the road. Even newly qualified young drivers can be seen driving the latest Lexus/Mercedes (whatever brand) low end range of new cars, financed by Personal Contract Plans. Often cheaper to insure a new car than an old banger.

    There have been cases in the UK where dead birds and rats have been soaked in antifreeze and left as deliberate bait for cats. There have been instances of it happening to ferals, strays and also farm cats.

    Most communities have a known cat hater living amongst them. We have one in our village. He is a brazen freak, loathed by all, but no one will confront him.

    I have read of two cases where households had protected their cats by installing provably secure catproof fencing, or a catsafe enclosure to avoid their cats roaming. This did not deter the determined cat haters who threw food over the fences (also dry food soaked) that had been baited with anti-freeze. This happened in daylight hours. The cats were inside at night.

    Wouldn’t it be better to drench humans with education to be kind to and tolerate other species, rather than to castigate and shame those who within a culture of previously safe free ranging cats, still allow their cats to roam?

    Understanding different cultures and environments is very important too.

    However, I do not understand why the family did not take steps to keep their other cats safe after one was poisoned. Maybe the vet, not wanting to alienate local cat haters (who may also be clients) told the dead cats’ people that it was ‘just an accident’ and it would be fine to let their other cats out to roam at will?

    There is still a massive ignorance in the UK about cats being ‘nocturnal’ I know cat lovers who insist they are. Try explaining ‘crepuscular’ to them, it does not even register. Ignorance about welfare, behaviour, psychology and safety is persistent and perpetuating amomgst companion animal guardians everywhere. People prefer to stay thick and believe dumb old myths that do not require thinking.

    To insist that all cats MUST be kept indoors at all times kinda speaks the same message as ‘all female humans must stay inside and never go outside alone or they are asking to be raped/abducted’

    It is giving in to tyranny & hate.

    • That is always going to be a concern. Cats should still be monitored when outside and patrolled on a regular basis. For homes with large enclosures perhaps the owners should consider a smaller and more secure section on a porch where humans cannot easily access or confine them indoors when gone. Most dog owners follow the same protocol. Nuts and animal thieves as well as animal haters are everywhere.

  2. What mindless stupid twats. You would think after the first cat they might keep their companion animals at home. My heart breaks for the cats who have such failures as guardians.
    News Flash cat haters are out there why is your equivalent of a toddler running loose.

    • In response to your very rude comment, our cats were kept in as best we could, we are not failures we also have two senior cats age 17+ that we have had from birth. Tommy was a street cat who adopted us and so therefore keeping him in was impossible because he wasn’t used to the indoor life, he came in had food and went back out again… Please if you are only going to get half the information from someone who didn’t even bother to interview us, may I suggest you keep your cruel tongue to yourself.

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