Cruz competed at the annual event hosted by the Westminster Kennel Club and died four days later while at another show in Colorado.
Blue said no evidence of foul play was present but believed “certain symptoms were consistent with dogs who ingest rat or mouse poison,” according to the AP.
The dog’s handler, Robert Chaffin, revealed to The New York Times his suspicions of who may have targeted Cruz if foul play was at work.
Chaffin believed “extreme animal rights activists” may have had it out for the Samoyed because of past criticisms directed at purebred dogs.
The AP pointed out one occasion in 2010 when members of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) protested the event, but the group’s co-founder and president Ingrid Newkirk said Chaffin’s claims “make no sense whatsoever.”
“It’s a fantasy. It’s a fallacy. … How dare you point a finger and cast aspersions when you haven’t a clue,” Newkirk said in comments to the AP Thursday night.
Cruz’s vet Molly Comiskey didn’t believe foul play was at work either. “Dogs are dogs … They eat stuff. They get into things. They make bad decisions.”
As for Blue, when asked if she believed the poisoning was intentional, she said, “I don’t think we’ll ever know.”
The Westminster Dog Show ended February 12. Banana Joe captured Best-in-Show.
Do you believe Cruz was poisoned, and what do you think about the allegations against PETA?
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