MADISON (NBC 26) -- Several domestic dogs, as well as wild animals, have been found dead recently from poison in northern Wisconsin, wildlife officials said Monday.
Wisconsin DNR, along with U.S. Fish and Wildlife, are investigating the animal deaths. The DNR said several dogs have died in Forest, Marinette and Florence counties. Investigators also found dead raptors, coyotes, weasels, raccoons and wolves.
Lab tests confirmed the cause of death in these animals was from dangerous toxic substances. U.S. Fish and Wildlife said in a news release that this ongoing investigation began in 2019 with dog deaths that occurred in northern Wisconsin. The original deaths happened on lands open to the public.
According to wildlife officials, the dogs ingested poison that was found on the ground. Each dog died soon after eating the poison. Since the 2019 investigation, officials say two hunting beagles were poisoned in Forest County and more wildlife fatalities were reported in Marinette County.
While the investigation is focused on the three counties, the DNR said it’s unknown if other counties could be involved. Wildlife officials recommend people keep their pets on leashes while walking to restrict movements off roadways to avoid possible contact with any poison.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife is offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information that leads to the arrest and/or charges being filed against those responsible for the poisonings. Anyone with information is asked to call 608-221-1206 or contact the DNR at 1-800-TIP-WDNR or 1-800-847-9367. People may also submit a report online: https://dnrx.wisconsin.gov/rav/.