A council tenant has been left heartbroken after his best friend's dog died after consuming rat poison.

Kyle Kibblewhite has been suffering from issues with rats at his flat in Harrington Walk, Walcot, for more than a year.

He says that his best friend's dog, Chico, died at the end of October after ingesting poison via rat urine in the flat. The poison had been laid in the attic of his flat by a council pest controller to try and eradicate the pest problem.

Mr Kibblewhite has two dogs of his own and is now concerned for their safety as the rodent problem persists.

The 32-year-old said: “They (his best friend and his dog, Chico) were round my house every day and the problem got worse and worse and worse and then Chico got ill and died.Swindon Advertiser:

“It was emotional, it was horrible, it was like losing a family member, we lost a member of the pack, my dogs are my life and losing them is horrible.

“Seeing him laid there with no strength, nothing in him and watching him go was really tough.

“That dog was like a son to him, it is heartbreaking.”

The vet that was tending to Chico is said to have told them that the death was caused by rat poison before the pair even mentioned the current problem.

Mr Kibblewhite says he complained about the rat problem to the council over a year ago and a pest controller was sent out.

The pest controller put down rat poison in the attic but explained that the floorboards in the attic were so badly damaged by the rats that he could not go up, according to Mr Kibblewhite.

Mr Kibblewhite also told the Adver that the pest controller has been coming semi-regularly to put down poison however he was told that repairs must be made to the flat in order to stop rats from entering the property and making the problem worse.

Mr Kibblewhite claims that he has told his housing officer about the need for these repairs multiple times, however he says nothing had been done to fix these repairs until after the Adver approached the council about the issue.

Mr Kibblewhite currently sleeps in the living room with his dogs as he is extremely concerned that they will also pass away if they consume any rat urine.

He said: “If my dogs die, I cannot control my actions, I have got so bad with my mental health it is causing me real distress and it is horrible, I have never been like this and I don’t wish it on anybody.”

“It is horrible, all I hear is scratching and squealing and fighting.

“I feel like I am slowly deteriorating and going to die, that’s how my life is going to end, I feel like they are trying to kill me.”

Swindon Borough Council claimed that after the initial visit by a pest controller over a year ago, they only received further contact "very recently".

A spokesman said: “We entirely sympathise with the problems our tenant has been experiencing.

"We sent a pest controller out to his home over a year ago to deal with the problem and did not receive any further contact about the issues until very recently.

"We have arranged for a pest controller to visit his home again to hopefully get to the bottom of the problem.”