Palmer dog dies from ingesting amphetamines

The death comes after several other pets in Mat-Su area neighborhoods were hospitalized due to amphetamine consumption
Palmer dog dies from ingesting meth
Published: Mar. 9, 2023 at 2:43 PM AKST
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PALMER, Alaska (KTUU) - Every night, Krysta Voskowsky would whistle to her cat, Benjamin, and two dogs, Ted and Mishka.

It’s where she typically calls them to bed.

“My partner and I would climb into bed and all of us would pile on the bed, and would do belly rubs and snuggles,” Voskowsky said.

Her household of pets, precious additions to her family. A little over a year ago, their newest edition, Mishka, arrived after Voskowsky and her partner adopted the four-year-old dog from their neighbor.

“Mishka felt part dog, part guardian angel, part long lost kid,” Voskowsky said.

Voskowsky said Mishka brought playful energy and light into their home, but now, she says a silence lingers throughout their halls, and one less fur baby is there to cuddle with them at night.

“I miss hearing her little paw at the door. I miss hearing the jingle of her collar as she follows the cat around the house,” she said.

On March 1, Voskowsky left to go to a dentist appointment, and like she had done plenty of times before, she allowed her dogs to stay in the fenced backyard, figuring they would be safe, she said.

Almost two hours later, Voskowsky returned and noticed that something was not right with Mishka.

“She just looked kind of lethargic,” Voskowsky recalled. “But I couldn’t really — I didn’t think anything was wrong right away.”

A few hours later, Voskowsky said, Mishka started struggling to walk and began losing her balance.

Voskowsky and her partner brought Mishka to the vet that night, where veterinarians tried to figure out what was wrong with their dog. Right before they tried to take a urine analysis, Mishka went into cardiac arrest.

After 30 minutes of trying to bring her back, veterinarians were unsuccessful.

“The doctor came in and said, she did pop positive for amphetamines,” Voskowsky said.

This is not the first case the Palmer Police Department has seen this year. Palmer police said within the past two weeks, two other dogs had a similar experience.

In a statement, the department said they received a report from a resident on Ellen Street who took two of her pets to the vet “due to strange behavior” — one on Feb. 25 and the other on March 1.

“The vet drew blood from the first animal and had it tested. The vet allegedly determined there may have been amphetamines and THC in the blood,” the department said. “The second animal was not tested the same way, but the assumption was made it was the same prognosis due to similar behavior.”

Voskowsky said her own animal’s diagnosis has left her with fears and unanswered questions.

“I don’t leave the house much. I don’t let the dog out unattended,” Voskowsky said. “It’s all I can do but stand in the window and speculate.”

Palmer police and the Mat-Su Animal Shetler both said they are investigating the situation.