Veterinary drug pentobarbitone stolen in Palmerston North
Published on 11 November 2022
Police are investigating the theft of a powerful veterinary drug, pentobarbitone, which was stolen from a vehicle in Palmerston North on 3 November 2022.
Pentobarbitone, also known as pentobarbital, is used to euthanise animals. It is considered a high-risk drug and could be life-threatening to both people and animals if consumed.
Although it is not clear how the offender(s) gained access to the pentobarbitone, this is a timely reminder for veterinarians to ensure any controlled drugs they are transporting are secured properly.
The Code of Professional Conduct for Veterinarians states:
Veterinarians who carry controlled drugs in their vehicles for use at work must comply with the statutory requirements. Those controlled drugs not required for immediate use must be stored in a locked metal compartment securely fixed to the vehicle. If the vehicle is left unattended the veterinarian must take all reasonable steps to secure the vehicle against unlawful entry. A locked vehicle boot, locked ute service box, locked cabinet within the service box or locked glove box currently meet these requirements.
When controlled drugs are stored in vehicles, veterinarians must:
- only carry the smallest quantities of the drugs
- not keep the key to the compartment in the vehicle when the vehicle is unattended
- lock the drugs in the cabinet if they are in the vehicle overnight
- try to park the vehicle in a locked garage or secure area overnight, or consider removing the drugs if the parking area is not secure.