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Residents Believe Herbicide Used At Park Is Killing Pets

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Sandy Rice of Springfield Township, Bucks County believes her dogs Duke and Molly were taken from her too soon. First, Duke died late last year. Then two months after, while Rice was still mourning, Molly went too.

"It's unbelievable. They were a part of our family," she said.

"I lost two dogs 30 days apart, said David Bretz, a neighbor. "One in January and one in February."

Bretz said, in all, 11 dogs in the area recently passed away, each due to cancer. He also pointed out another common link: the dogs either routinely played at Peppermint Park or lived near it.

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He says the problem is the park is where a local farmer leases part of the land from the township to grow hay and uses a herbicide that includes a chemical called 2,4-D.

"It's the 2,4-D that's been shown to be a possible carcinogen in dogs," Rice said.

Springfield Twp. officials insist there's no evidence showing the dogs died from the park's herbicide, the township's own environmental advisory committee released a study two years ago, urging the township to make the park safer. One recommendation called to only allow organic herbicides to be used.  CBS3 found the township never put the recommendation into effect.

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"It's not the township's job to tell someone how to grow hay," said Township Manager Michael Brown. "And so the products he's used are perfectly legal."

Springfield Township officials plan to hold a meeting Tuesday night to address concerns.

CBS3 went to the farmer's business to ask why he uses his particular herbicide. He wasn't there and he never called back.


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