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San Francisco pet owners warned of poisoned meatballs in Twin Peaks area

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Residents of the Twin Peaks' neighborhood are being warned to keep careful watch over their pets after a resident called authorities on Saturday to report finding what police believe might be poisoned raw meatballs reported the

According to Acting Lt. Denise BonGiovanni, 34 raw meatballs with a solid substance inside were discovered along Crestline and Parkridge Drives. The raw meat was well hidden near carports, stairwell, curbs, and under hedges; all places dogs would likely sniff.

Similar circumstances happened last year, and tests revealed strychnine. Commonly used as a rodent poison, strychnine is identifiable as green or pink seeds or pellets. The chemical is extremely toxic to dogs and cats, and is quickly absorbed into the body from the stomach. Symptoms may appear from 15 minutes to 2 hours after ingested. It is imperative a veterinarian begin aggressive treatment for pets that have been poisoned.

The Pet Poison Help Line identifies the following symptoms of strychnine poisoning:

Severe seizures and tremors
Elevated body temperature
Acute death

The meatballs have been turned over to the San Francisco Police Department for analysis. Animal Control has been posting signs for dog and cat owners to be on the alert and to monitor their pets carefully.

A hotline has been set up for any information. Please call (415) 575-4444.

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