File photo. Not a photo of any of the cats discovered dead in Kelowna.

Predator possibly killed cats in Kelowna: BC SPCA

Several cats have been found dead near parks in Kelowna

The BC SPCA is asking residents to call the animal abuse hotline if they suspect anything is occurring with pets in their neighbourhood.

The warning comes after the bodies of several cats were found scattered near downtown Kelowna.

Regional manager for the Cruelty Investigation Department Brian Kijowski said in order for the deaths to be investigated, those who have discovered their pets missing or deceased need to report the incident to the BC SPCA.

“If someone’s pet dies of a suspicious circumstance, we will investigate as we need to base everything on facts and evidence,” he said.

Kijowski’s comments come after reports that pet owners are assuming their animals have died as a result of a human and after someone offered a reward for information on the deaths.

READ MORE: Reports of mutilated cats discovered in downtown Kelowna

The bodies of cats have been reported near Mantera Glen Park, Lombardy Park and Parkinson Recreational Park.

“These are parks where we get reports of wildlife all of the time. We just had a report of a cougar in North Kelowna and there are always eagles out,” he said. “Cats should be kept inside and people should be aware of the wildlife that could cause harm to their pets.”

Kijowski also explained it is puppy season for coyotes in the Okanagan and mothers will be hunting for food for their pups.

“We do have a large coyote population in Kelowna and they may be hunting in these parks,” Kijowski said.

Currently, the BC SPCA only has one carcass of a dead cat from the recent killings, which were first reported on June 20. The carcass is currently being sent away for an autopsy and proper examination, which should give investigators more information on how the animal was killed.

Until that time, Kijowski is asking that people keep pets inside and to call the animal abuse hotline at 1-855-622-7722 to report anything suspicious.

READ MORE: Kelowna RCMP release statement after civil suit filed over alleged rough arrest


@Jen_zee
jen.zielinski@bpdigital.ca

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