A Jayess man said five of his hunting dogs have died after eating poisoned meat.
Andy May, a pastor, said he took 12 of his hunting dogs out Wednesday night looking for rabbits. By Friday morning, four of the 12 were dead.
“When I found the first two, I was saying, ‘Oh, no! Oh, no!’ And then I went to the pen where my buddy was and hoping to see that he would come to the gate, but he didn’t. He was dead,” May said. “I’m just heartbroken.”
The dogs — Buckeye, Scooter, Fred and Easy Money — were all beagles. Trained to hunt rabbits, the dogs were 2 and 3 years old. May said he was “ashamed” to admit how much he paid for the four dogs but said it was easily over $2,500.
May was also keeping another dog for a friend. That dog was in the cage with the dogs and died as well.
In anguish, May said he posted pictures of the dead dogs on Facebook, hoping to find out how or why his dogs were poisoned. The original post has been liked more than 100,000 times. It has been shared more than 117,000.
“I’ve had hunting dogs for 30, 35 years,” he said. “This is the first time anything ever happened like this, I have never had to deal with this before...they couldn’t speak for themselves, so I thought I had to speak up.”
He alerted law enforcement but, so far, there haven’t been any arrests made, he said. Autopsies will be conducted on the dogs to find out what exactly they ate.
Capt. Chris Reed with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks said the dogs’ deaths are under investigation.
May said he is hoping for justice.
“Whoever these people are need to be brought to justice and be held accountable for the actions they’ve done. They broke the law.”
May said he spent hours training the dogs but Easy Money was his “buddy.” He said he’s trying to exercise forgiveness but he doesn’t understand why someone would poison his dogs.
“I just wish it was just a dream, and it would all go away,” he said, “but it’s sad to know that people will do such things and then hide behind what they’ve done.
“i’m kind of trapped between what I feel and what I’m supposed to represent because I’m the pastor of a small church. I’ve got to be somewhat forgiving, and I do forgive them, but i don’t understand why they would put this stuff out to kill an animal, not just my dogs, but any animal that comes across it.”