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10 February 2011, 12:16 | Updated: 21 February 2011, 14:04
Wildlife Officers in Bournemouth and Poole are appealing for information after poison pellets were found in the Talbot Heath area – with dog walkers being urged to take extra care on the heath.
In recent weeks, concerned dog walkers have told Dorset Police and the council about unusual pellets that they have found in Talbot Heath, just off East Avenue in Bournemouth.
There have been further reports that a number of dogs have required veterinary treatment after eating these pellets.
Police Constable Rob Hammond, Wildlife Crime Officer for North Bournemouth, said: "We’re concerned that someone is using poison pellets in the area – possibly to deter foxes.
"Such pellets are potentially fatal to dogs – something which this person may not have considered.
"I would urge dog walkers using Talbot Heath to be vigilant and to take extra care."
Safer Neighbourhood Team officers have retrieved a number of pellets, which have been sent for analysis.
PC Hammond continued: "I am appealing for anyone with any information about these pellets to contact myself or PC Claire Dinsdale – who is jointly investigating this incident – as soon as possible.
"All calls will be treated in the strictest of confidence."
Witnesses and anyone with information should call Dorset Police in confidence on 01202 22 22 22 quoting incident number 3:342. Alternatively, call the free and anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111 where mobile phone tariffs may apply.