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As the temperatures start to fall into single digits, the smaller mammals find refuge in the homes of the larger ones. Such is the case with mice and rats, who tart searching for food indoors during winter. For pet owners, this is not a welcome arrangement, as they usually have a number of mechanical contraptions and poisonous chemicals for eradicating these pets. Rodenticides, more commonly known as at poison, are extremely effective against rats and other rodents. However, they also pose a considerable risk for household pets. If your dog comes into contact with a rodenticide or ingest a poisoned rodent, he can become very ill and even die if the toxin is fast acting.
Symptoms, diagnosis and treatment
If the poison is an anticoagulant, then it will cause internal bleeding. You will begin to notice that your dog is lethargic or depressed, has a decreased appetite, is unwilling to move, and is hyperventilating. In some cases, there will be signs of external bleeding in the gums and nose, or blood in the stool or urine. These symptoms can worsen, and how quickly they do depends on whether the poison is slow acting or fast acting.
Bromethalin poisons can bring about an onslaught of symptoms within hours. Your dog will start to have tremors and seizures, weakness, ataxia, vomiting, and loss of energy. If your dog has ingested a large quantity of the poison for his age and size, then it can even induce coma. Cholecalicferol is quite possible the most dangerous of all rodenticides. Symptoms include vomiting, weakness, anorexia, and an increase in thirst and urination. Poisons that are made of zinc, calcium, or aluminium phosphides are designed to mess with the digestive system, resulting in bloat and severe chock.
If your dog has come into a contact with a rodenticide, contact the vet immediately. Take the bottle or box along with you so that he/she can identify the poison. Anticoagulants are usually treated by flushing the system with activated charcoal to get rid of the poison and administering vitamin K1 to stop the bleeding. If it has been less than two hours since the chemical was ingested, then vomiting will be induced to expel the toxin from the system. If the symptoms are severe, then your dog might need a blood transfusion packed red blood cells to replace the damaged blood clotting proteins.
Bromethalin is trickier to treat and the vet will most likely induce vomiting and use a stomach pump and lavage to cleanse the stomach of it contents. Activated charcoal is used to neutralize the remaining poison. Bear in mind that the prognosis is relatively guarded fro dogs who have ingested this poison. In most of the cases, the dogs have to be hospitalized with no guarantee of a complete recovery.