Beach poison fears after dog dies after walk in dunes in Portrane

by Sylvia Pownall

Portrane beach was last week swept for poison after a devastated dog owner whose border collie died raised the alarm with the local authority.

Fingal County Council requested that lifeguards do an extra patrol along the popular strand after reports of the dog becoming ill after a walk in the dunes.

Pam Robinson shared a warning with other dog owners about “possible poison” being laid near Portrane beach following the death of her beloved dog, Sox.

She said five-year-old Sox was taken to the vet’s hospital in UCD after he started shaking, vomiting and became disorientated one evening in July.

Vets said he had ingested poison, but the source of the substance remained a mystery as the family could not fathom where he could have picked it up.

He was treated and recovered, but fell suddenly ill again immediately after a walk on the beach earlier this month.

Pam said: “He’d gone off into the dunes a few hundred yards beyond the cement ‘SeaBees’ on our way home.

“Some 20 minutes later he collapsed as we came through our gate, had a fit – similar but more severe to the previous ones – before I’d even thought ‘vet’.

“He started staggering, he started fitting … he collapsed over onto his side and then was gone. It was really sudden and really quick.”

Warning vigilance among other dog owners, she added: “We are in shock and miss him terribly; our daughter is devastated.

“If you walk your dog off lead at Portrane beach, use extreme care. If you know anyone baiting for rats, remind them to lay poison in pipes or under a shed out of reach of other animals.”

Fingal County Council confirmed they had not laid any poison in the area in recent weeks.

A spokesperson for the local authority said: “The Operations department has requested the lifeguards to conduct an additional patrol to ensure there is nothing untoward on the beach.

Fingal County Council also advises any affected dog owners to contact a vet as soon as possible.

“They might be able to confirm and identify symptoms and point to a possible cause.”

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