Lynette Blue says she thinks her prized pet was deliberately poisoned while competing at the Westminster Kennel Club show earlier this month, causing it to die several days later.
"The timeline adds up. There's no other scenario we can come up with other than poison," Blue told the Associated Press.
Blue said her dog, a 3-year-old Samoyed named Cruz, died on Feb. 16, four days after competing, and that certain symptoms were consistent with dogs who ingest rat or mouse poison. That was the reason she said she decided against a necropsy — an autopsy for animals.
The veterinarian who treated Cruz, Molly Comiskey, told the New York Times that "Dogs are dogs. They eat stuff; they get into things; they make bad decisions."
Cruz did not win any awards at the competition.
"We have never, to our knowledge, had an incident at our show where a dog has become ill or was harmed as a result of being poisoned," the kennel club said in a statement. "After conversation with the co-owner of the dog in question, it was established that the dog left Georgia on Monday and flew to New York, he was exhibited at our show on Tuesday, and flew to Denver on Wednesday morning where he subsequently became ill on Saturday. Unfortunately, no autopsy was performed, so there are a lot of unanswered questions."