Pet-owner Tracey Beckett, 54, was heartbroken after her three cats – Portuguese Siameses Africa and Piggy and ginger tabby Alfie – had to be put down by a vet in the space of a week. Suffolk Police are treating the slow, agonising deaths as suspected poisonings with anti-freeze. They’re begging drivers and garage hands topping up radiators ahead of this week’s predicted blizzards not to dump the drained-out old liquid where cats can find it.
The Government has also been pressed to urge manufacturers to make antifreeze less sweet so cats – which adore the taste – don’t drink it and die.
Ms Beckett, of Stowmarket Road, Great Blakenham, said: “We have had Africa and Piggy for the last 10 or 11 years and all of a sudden this happens.
“I saw them being born. It is hard when you lose an animal but having three in such suspicious circumstances is heartbreaking.
“My children have left home now but are absolutely devastated.”
She fears it was deliberate, saying: “Who would do this and why, I just don’t understand it.
“It is such a horrible way for them to die.”
She noticed Africa was off her food and had not moved an hour later so she and husband Richard, 68, took the cat to the vets in Needham Market.
Africa’s health quickly deteriorated and she had to be put down.
She said: ”She couldn’t lift her head – all she was doing was crying.”
Four days later she realised Alfie had been asleep in the shed all morning, and when they went to see him they heard whimpering and he was too weak to stand.
They took him to the vet but there was nothing that could be done for him.
Tragically, three days after that, Piggy began being sick and fell over.
She said: “I just looked at my husband and said ‘no, not again’.
“We rushed Piggy to the vets but it was no good. It is devastating.”
Anyone who witnessed any suspicious behaviour in the area should call Hadleigh Police on 101 quoting crime reference 37/68649/18.