Campaigners secure poison ban

| 05/05/2015 | 23 Comments
Cayman News Service

Rooney, one of many pets killed in Cayman by paraquat

(CNS): Following the deaths of many pets in Cayman as a result of paraquat poisoning, a local public awareness campaign has secured a ban on the importation of the highly toxic herbicide. Paraquat was added to the customs prohibited goods act by Cabinet at the end of last month, preventing anyone from lawfully bringing in the dangerous chemical. Campaigners were delighted at the news and posts on the Facebook page created to help press for the ban described the move as a huge step in the right direction for the Cayman Islands.

“We are beyond happy to announce that the importation of paraquat is now officially banned in the Cayman Islands,” organisers said, as they thanked those who had supported the cause and the government for taking action. “This will save many of our pets’ lives and probably our children’s lives as well,” the campaigners added.

However, they warned pet owners to remain vigilant because although the amendment bans new imports, the poison remains on the islands.

“You only need a small amount to kill,” the local activists noted. “Stay alert, report suspicious behavior, take photos if you see anyone laying anything out … look out for containers and food lying in the roads, keep your pets on leashes and in your gardens and be responsible pet owners,” they urged.

The campaign began with a petition more than three years ago but local vets have said the issue of deliberate paraquat poisoning has been a problem in Cayman for some twenty years. The campaigners collected almost 5,000 signatures and cancelled a public demonstration that was planned for March when government agreed to address the issue. The order was issued on 29 April, making importation unlawful.

Many dogs have been killed as a result of ingesting food deliberately put out for animals laced with paraquat, causing a particularly slow and painful death for the animals in question. Over the last four years at least 20 family pets have been killed by paraquat poisoning. There have also been persistent concerns that the use of this herbicide on animals may also threaten children. The poison has been banned in many other countries as it is harmful to humans even without ingesting, especially farmers that handled the herbicide as part of their work.

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Category: Health, health and safety

Comments (23)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    If you can’t shoot these pests or poison them how else are you meant to kill them?

    • Anonymous says:

      If you are talking about the parasites/pathetic excuse owners, than I couldn’t agree more with your statement.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Serious measures also need to be taken against irresponsible dog owners. But first government need to do their job and catch the strays. Any dog caught without a collar should be euthanize. This can be paid for by any dog caught with a collar be released only after payment of much stiffer fines than currently exists. Perhaps $500 for the 1st offense, $1,000 for the 2nd and increased to $5,000 after. With higher fines I am sure there will be less dogs left to roam by irresponsible dog owners.

    • Critterly says:

      Euthanize all strays? Really? Cayman has had strays since the beginning of time and they are a whole lot less of a threat than many of the human zombies roaming the streets, who have a home!

    • Anonymous says:

      I feel the same way about parents who let their feral children run around the stores unnattended. Maybe we should round them up and charge parents a fee for releasing them too! Only responsible people should procreate, however, this is not always the case! Maybe with higher fines there will be less issues with kids and crime!

  3. satirony says:

    No dog, or any animal for that matter, deserves to suffer the excruciating death caused by Paraquat. Some sadistic people are known also to use strychnine which causes agonizing pains before death. Deliberate cruelty is never justified, though a clean shot to the head might be merited by those dogs that attack cyclists, walkers and joggers, causing serious injury. I know what you are thinking, it’s the owners who merit the bullet, but I can’t advocate that, unfortunately.

  4. Anonymous says:

    What about the root issue of negligent owners who leave their untrained dogs off leashes, or power trip owners who let their dogs bark for as long as they want without telling them to be quiet after a few seconds, or sadistic owners who let their dogs go hungry or on short leashes and in the rain while they go barking mad because they are cold and hungry and are craving attention from their owners. I was in an upscale restaurant last month with a person who brought their dog; the dog was perfectly trained and reflected their calm and stable owners. I loved seeing that respect between the owner and their dog and the dog was a welcome addition. A person should be embarrassed that their dog or dogs bark constantly changing a peaceful neighborhood into a slum, but a dog craving attention reflects an owner who does the same in their own perverted manner. Until there are laws that reward respect between dogs and owners from those idiots who use their pets, I say some chili pepper powder stops the barking madness for a while, and using your kids to switch the onus and justify your anti-social behavior toward your neighbors is just another sign you do not deserve to have pets, much less kids, or even property.

  5. Anonymous says:

    With the passage of NCL and banning of importation of new paraquat, we’d love to think this is the end of poison bait traps, but most of us can predict that methods will shift to something equally poisonous. I’d hope there is some continued public discussion into the extermination of nuisance roosters, rats, green iguanas, and ChingChings by vigilante extermination service providers. Despite what some may believe is business as usual, like it or not, two of these creatures are now protected under the law. It’s now up to the DoE to educate these businesses, employees, and cash freelancers, and make some examples with actual penalties.

    • Critterly says:

      Roosters and ChingChings bother you? Then I suggest you pack your bags and return to from whence you came!

  6. Anonymous says:

    one small step for man….one giant leap for caymankind…..

  7. Anonymous says:

    There is nothing wrong with setting poison out for dogs that wander onto private property without the land owners’ consent. If people cannot control their animals they cannot complain about the consequences.

    • Anonymous says:

      What a pathetic response. If you have a grandbaby I hope it never wonders into a neighbour’s yard who has adopted your way of thinking.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are a fool if you think this was set out by people in their own yards. This was being thrown INTO PEOPLES YARDS. THERE is nothing ok about laying out bait to poison peoples pets who are in their yard (where their kids play) or even on roads where people walk their pets ON A LEASH.

      • Anonymous says:

        You are also a fool if you think it is ok to poison an animal like this. You are nothing more than a mammal to, remember that.

        • Anonymous says:

          I tend not to take moral guidance from people who fail to understand the distinction between “to” and “too”. I will do what I want in my backyard. I suggest you stay at home and study grammar.

          • Anonymous says:

            I can tell you have a fabulous moral compass. I prefer those with poor grammar to those with or hearts any day! Hope karma comes right back around to you, the world needs more people with poor grammar, less people with evil hearts, apparently.

    • Philis says:

      Where’s the damn troll button when you need it!

    • Anonymous says:

      be careful what eat/drink…you might get a taste of your own medicine…..

    • Critterly says:

      Nothing wrong with causing extreme pain and distress to a creature which was domesticated by man, making us responsible for them? You are evil and despicable! To even think evil, is a sin and to harm any dog is an unforgivable crime. Ashamed to think you are a fellow Caymanian!

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