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.
“What happened in this poison scare was it was on the rants and raves section of Craigs List,” said Matthew Parker, president of Friends of Hillside Dog Park on the corner Columbia Heights and Middagh Street in downtown Brooklyn.
“There’s been no incidents as far as I know, but the Parks Department got a hold of dog owner groups to get the word out to constituents.”
Parker, who has an Italian Spinone named Giuseppe, said that if something did happen, almost all the dog runs in the city are connected to electronic boards and that word could be out within an hour.
Bob Ipcar, spokesperson for FIDO in Prospect Park and webmaster for FIDOBrooklyn.org said the warning was posted on their website, but they have not heard of any incidents of poisoned dog runs.
“If it is a hoax it was taken seriously enough to put everyone on alert,” he said.
While there is no dog run in Prospect Park, there are off-leash hours from 5-9 a.m. and 9 p.m.-1 a.m. in the Long Meadow, Nethermead and the peninsula off the lake.
There is also a doggy beach off a pond near the 9th Street entrance.