PET owners and parents have been warned to be alert for strange food, after meat laced with rat pellets was discovered in a Coolum family's backyard.
A piece of steak and a chicken breast, both plugged with green rat bait, had been thrown into the backyard overnight.
One of the dogs was seen licking the piece of steak, potentially seconds away from deadly poisoning.
"We live in a two storey house and my wife saw them outside the window licking at it; there were at least half a dozen (poison pellets) inside," Coolum man John Goodman said this morning.
Mr Goodman admits his dogs bark during the day but for someone to go this far rocked him.
He struggled to think for words at why or how anyone could do a crime like this.
"We've been here 14 months and never had an issue. Our dogs do bark if people are out the front but we yell at them to stop and they get put inside if they don't," he said.
"So I'd imagine someone is sick of the barking and taken it into their own hands, but this is so wrong.
"One of our boxers is eight and the other one not two years old, it would be devastating for us (to lose them). Especially for our two young kids.
"We like to keep to ourselves and do not have any idea what has brought this on. We don't have issues with anyone."
Warning signs for Sunshine Coast residents
- People looking over fences.
- Markings on your property that you did not put there.
- Strangers asking about your or your neighbours dogs.
- People feeding dogs through fences.
- Cars driving slowly down your street several times.
Mr Goodman is monitoring both his pets, who appear to be fine, and will be taking them to the vet for a precautionary visit.
He has contacted the police, and officers are investigating and door knocking the area between Centenary Heights Rd and South Coolum Rd.
RSPCA spokesperson Michael Beatty said disputes like this were usually caused by disgruntled neighbours.
He urged residents to speak to the dog owners first rather than take drastic action.
"If the owners here hadn't seen the poison, the dogs could easily have died," Mr Beatty said.
"We have had a number of different incidents lately, one last week in a Brisbane dog park.
"A lot of these things happen because of dogs barking or neighbourhood disputes but often they can be sorted out by simply speaking to one another.
"I just wish they would talk to one another face to face, if they had of it could have been resolved."
If anyone has any information regarding the incident, contact RSPCA on 1300 ANIMAL (1300 264 625).
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