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KETCHUM, Idaho -- A dog's death has turned into a criminal investigation in Blaine County, where authorities have confirmed the animal was poisoned.

The Idaho Mountain Express reports the 6-year-old American Staffordshire terrier named Skylar died several days after eating meat it came across during a walk with its owner in the Lake Creek area, north of Ketchum.

Blaine County Sheriff Gene Ramsey confirmed earlier this week that laboratory tests showed the meat was laced with xylitol, an artificial sweetener that is safe for human consumption but can cause liver failure in dogs and other canines.

Ramsey's office has taken over the investigation from state wildlife officials because it involves the illegal poisoning of a domestic animal. Ramsey speculated the poisoned meat was likely left for coyotes or wolves.

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