Iceland Mag

6 Reykjavik

Iceland Mag


Mysterious deaths of cats in Hveragerði village: Locals fear foul play

By Staff

  • One of Iceland's many feline residents Police is investigating a number of suspicious deaths of cats in Hveragerði which are feared to be connected to previous cases of unexplained deaths of cats. Photo/Stefán Karlsson.

The Police in South Iceland is investigating a series of suspicious deaths of cats in Hveragerði village. At least four cats have died from apparent poisoning, while several more have become sick, as well as at least one dog. Similar cases came up in several other towns in recent years, leading locals to fear someone might be killing the animals for fun.

Unexplained deaths of cats and birds
Local newspaper Morgunblaðið reports that at least six cats died since last week. In addition a number of cats and dogs have became sick from unexplained causes. Locals also report that they have found large numbers of dead birds in town. The animals seem to have died from poisoning. In two cases locals claim someone must have fed their cats poisoned treats through an open window, since the cats which died from poisoning were "inside cats", not allowed outdoors.

One resident told Morgunblaðið that a neighbour had found a blue coloured piece of fish in front of his house. Shortly thereafter she discovered her cat in great pain and very sick. The cat died later died. The fish is believed to have been soaked in antifreeze. 

Aðalsteinn Magnússon, a local resident told that he believes his year old cat, named Pútín, died from eating the poisoned fish.

“Nobody knows who is to blame or what might drive anyone to do something like this. Either there is some really sick individual in town who is killing animals for fun, or someone has been trying to poison seagulls, but killing cats instead. Either way this person is not behaving in a particularly intelligent manner.”

The Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority, which is investigating the case, confirmed that the cats died from poisoning.

A series of unexplained deaths over several years
Similar cases have come up in other towns in recent years. Earlier this summer a large number of cats died from poisoning in the fishing village of Sandgerði in South-Eastern Iceland. According to the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service at least ten cats have either died or disappeared under suspicious circumstances in Sandgerði over a two year period. 

Kolbeinn Helgi Kristjánsson, at the South Iceland Police told The Icelandic National Broadcasting Service that these deaths might not be intentional or the result of malicious acts: “It could just as well be a series of unfortunate events and unusual coincidences.” Police suspects someone might be attempting to poison seagulls, rather than cats. Still, the case is being taken very seriously:

“This time we have to take this all the way. We have to tackle this matter now, since it seems to come up again and again”.


Related content

Editor's Picks