Mystery of dying guinea pigs after gas cloud

Five guinea pig deaths in 24 hours. Is this just a bizarre coincidence?

OnTheWight reader, Kay from Cowes, has been in touch with a query she hopes other readers may be able to help with.

Remember the gas cloud from a factory in France that passed over most of the Isle of Wight last week?

Sadly, the following morning Kay, discovered that two of her guinea pigs, kept under the cover of a large lean-to and well covered, had died.

Coincidence or not?
This fact is not unusual in itself, however, a few hours later, Kay’s sister, who lives in East Cowes reported that two of her daughter’s guinea pigs, who were kept inside, had also died.

The next day, a friend who lives in also lives in East Cowes found their guinea pig had died too.

Kay was keen to stress that she didn’t want to start a panic, but was interested to know if anyone else had experienced this on the Island.

Did you lose a pet last week?
We said we’d ask OnTheWight pet owners whether they had experienced the same unfortunate circumstances as Kay, after the gas cloud – which the authorities were keen to stress was entirely safe – had passed over the Island.

Let us know whether this is a bizarre coincidence or if you have experienced the same.

Image: Christopher Shirner under CC BY 2.0

Tuesday, 29th January, 2013 11:34am



Filed under: Community, Cowes, East Cowes, Top story

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Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.


  1. Country Girl

    29.Jan.2013 12:16pm

    Yes!!! One of mine died to and was under a year old and the other is fine! Was perfectly fine before, no sign of illness at all and no reason for it :-( poor piggys :-(

  2. sarah wheeler

    29.Jan.2013 1:26pm

    2 young rabbits died who were other wise fit and healty, and a one of the chickens who was also well ,may be nothing but maybe it could be connected also

    • I have four adult cats, all have been very unwell, initially they were very subdued and not eating their food or anything that they would normally go crazy for like pilchards. I took the one who was first to go down with the mystery illness to the vets for a check up and a blood test which came back clear so they dont appear to have a virus. Almost seven days have passed and finally the first one to get ill has started eating again this morning. I am also in East Cowes. Could this be connected?

      • I have an adult cat who was very subdued and then had violent vomiting, though the vomiting was some days later (26th).I have never known a cat be so sick. I wonder if the vets on the island have noticed any strange upturn in poorly pets since the gas incident? I did read a comment left on a national paper report on the gas leak that the contents of the gas can cause problems for pets.

        • Any human get affected? I’d quite like to know what I was breathing in!

          • OK, I know now, I followed the ‘source’.

            But the chemical may have been stronger than when it is added to gas in the usual way, people were reported as saying the smell was “horrendous”, & pets have been affected…. What about us, I wonder.

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