This forensic vet is something else! Able to deduce that someone is killing dogs with strychnine based on an investigation of stomach contents and discovering green granules consistent with gopher poison. What the heck? Strychnine is a particularly gruesome way to die – it competitively interferes with glycine at the level of the spinal cord which causes an excitatory state. The end result is that the victim has a series of seizures, but is wide awake for the whole process. Eventually the victim dies of suffocation because they can’t control their muscles of respiration. Poor pooches. Still, I’m impressed by this doggie Columbo.
Interestingly, the poison used to kill King Joffrey in “Game of Thrones” has been reported to be strychnine. In the books, the poison is called “the strangler.” It’s rare and unknown to most of Westeros, the fictional land that the series is set in. But there are a few clues in the text. The poison is made “from the leaves of a plant” that grows on an island in the “sea of jade.”