A spate of dog poisonings in Marlborough has residents worried it could be a tactic to get dogs out of the way to allow intruders to burgle properties.
Stuff reports piles of dog food laced with paracetamol pills were found in the garden of a Blenheim dog owner's property on Thursday night.
A resident in the Blenheim suburb of Witherlea reported a burglary later that night, reporting that their dog was beaten during the intrusion.
Lynette Leota said there were a lot of pills inside the lumps of dog food, and that her dogs ate the food but left the pills.
"We're just quite shocked that anyone would do that ... it seems quite malicious," Lynette Leota told Stuff.
Almost two weeks ago, a dog nearly died in the area, with the owner suspecting that poison had been thrown over the fence to it.
Leisha Smith said her labrador mastiff Bass survived eating the pills, but she was left to pay $700 in vet bills.
Animal rescue service Marlborough Dog Pawz operator Michelle Madsen advised pet owners to consider installing cameras.