The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) has advised people to use security fencing to make their gardens fox-proof rather than putting out poison.

This week, a Colchester family's dog had to be put down after eating meat specifically poisoned to kill foxes, reported.

It is believed someone is intentionally laying down the poisoned meat to trap foxes. The area is known for having a fox population but the town's MP, Bob Russell, has warned that poisoned meat should not be laid out willy-nilly in an urban environment.

He is also calling on people in the Monwick estate to ensure their pets do not come into contact with poisoned food.

"There are foxes in this region and they can become a nuisance in an urban environment, but people should not engage in do-it-yourself poisoning. Because of this behaviour a family has lost a much-loved pet," he told the news provider.

An RSPCA spokesperson said people should think about protecting their gardens rather than opting for poison.

"The RSPCA would recommend taking measures to deter foxes from gardens by removing or protecting anything that is likely to attract them," the spokesperson told the news provider.

"We would advise people to fence off fruit or vegetable crops, make sure bird food is kept in sturdy containers and remove places of shelter by blocking access to the areas under sheds and cutting down long grass."

Recently, insurance group NFU Mutual advised rural homeowners to maintain their perimeter security fencing after a rise in the number of fuel thefts.ADNFCR-3337-ID-800317646-ADNFCR