The city’s Parks Department has put borough canine owners on notice that there might be someone trying to poison their pooch.
The notice came after the threat of poison being placed on dog runs was brought to the Parks Department’s attention via an anonymous posting on Craigs List.
No evidence of any poison has been found, according to Parks Department officials.
“We are aware of the threat, and although it may well be a hoax, we are taking it seriously. We are working with the NYPD, Department Of Health/Animal Care and Control, and the ASPCA to investigate the matter,” said Parks Department spokesperson Phil Abramson.
“We are also, out of an abundance of caution, notifying dog run groups and users so they can be alert to possible malicious acts. Our Parks Enforcement Patrol (PEP) officers will be spot-checking dog runs. We urge anyone with any information on this, and anyone who might see something suspicious, to call 911 or 311,” he added.
While the word is out, some local dog lovers are being low key about the news.
“I think it’s a nut job. They (Parks) don’t want to dismiss any threat and we should all be cautious all of the time,” said Marine Park resident Rissa Peckar, who owns two dogs.
Peckar said either she or her husband take their pooches to Marine Park where dog lovers are allowed off-leash privileges in the center oval from sunrise until 9 a.m.
The couple also have a dog walker who takes their four-legged friends to the dog run in Manhattan Beach.
“Whenever we are in the park and see any food around or anything edible, we always try to steer our dogs away from that,” Peckar said, adding she doesn’t want to cause hysteria among dog lovers that someone might be out to poison their pet.
Community Board 15 Chair Theresa Scavo, who has a beloved Yorkshire terrier, noted that the Manhattan Beach dog run remains popular with dog lovers, but has its critics.
“The impression I got is it (someone poisoning dog runs) is a Park Slope issue,” she said.
Scavo said she never takes her dog to an open dog run for fear it could catch a disease or be attacked by other dogs.
Others, however, have posted warnings about the possible poisoning of dog runs borough wide.
This includes Dyker Heights Civic Association communications director and animal lover Jennifer DeFrank.
“If you use the Dyker Beach dog run or Owl’s Head Park or know a dog owner who does, please read and pass along,” wrote DeFrank in an email blast about the Parks Department warning.