RIO RANCHO, N.M. (KRQE) – People in a Rio Rancho neighborhood are keeping a closer eye on their pets, after nearly a dozen dogs died suddenly–and neighbors don’t think it’s a coincidence.
“So we were going to take them to the vet, but by that time, it was too late for the vet,” said Ayesha Martinez, fighting back tears.
Her two bulldogs, Cardi and Scarlett, died suddenly on Monday. The family left the dogs at home with family while they went on a camping trip over the weekend and when they came back, the dogs were vomiting and acting strange. The family thought it would pass, but the dogs’ health got worse on Monday.
“They were still alive but they smelled like they were dead already,” said Martinez. “They were cold to touch, they were already hard and stiff. They started bleeding from their eyes, their nose, their bowel movements, same thing with the blood.”
Not knowing why or how this happened, the family reached out to their neighbors on the Northern Meadows Community Facebook group to see if any of them recently experienced the same thing. Martinez said 10 other families replied, “yes.”
“Same causes, same symptoms, everything was the exact same and it happened so fast,” said Martinez.
Martinez said she did find what appears to be rat poison pellets near her backyard fence, and one of her neighbors had a vet confirm their dog was poisoned.
“I would be devastated,” said neighbor John King. “I would be beside myself if something happened to my pet.”
Neighbors are now fearful their dogs will suffer the same fate.
“I love my dog,” said King. “My dog is my dear, constant companion, so it’s very concerning to me.”
Martinez said she won’t have a necropsy done on her dogs because they’ve already been buried, but she does plan on filing a police report.
Rio Rancho police did confirm there’s already been one report filed and they’re looking into it. They didn’t give details because it’s an open investigation and they don’t want to speculate about the cause of death for these dogs.