Anticoagulant rodenticides, commonly known as rat or mice poison, are used to kill rats, mice, and other rodents. They can come in the form of pellets, powder, and even liquid, making it easy for small animals to ingest. People often place them around the house, garage, or yard to halt and prevent infestations
Cholecalciferol is the most common type of rat poison. It increases an animal’s calcium levels, damaging the tissues in the heart, kidneys, gastrointestinal tract, and muscles. When left untreated, its toxicity can lead to failure in multiple organs.
Bromethalin causes the brain to swell. Common symptoms include poor coordination, seizures, paralysis, and death. It can be extremely toxic even when consumed in small amounts.
Although these ingredients are typically used in mole or gopher baits, they can also be present in rat bait, especially in more rural areas. When in the stomach, they release phosphine gas, causing stomach bloating, abdominal pain, vomiting, seizures, and liver damage.
Signs of poisoning can vary depending on the rodenticide, and aren’t always visible after ingestion. “If your dog ate rat poison, most symptoms won’t show up for a day or two, or even up to a week after ingestion,” says Dr. Chyrle Bonk (DVM).
rat poison symptoms, treatment can look different for every type of poison and time frame. Dr. Bonk explains, “If it’s within a few hours of ingestion, your vet may induce vomiting and then give activated charcoal in order to get rid of as much poison as possible.”
If your dog consumed an anticoagulant, they may need to take vitamin K for four to six weeks and receive a blood transfusion. This treatment can help them develop proper blood clots.
“The prognosis for rat poison ingestion is going to depend on the type of poison, how much was ingested, and how quickly treatment was started,” says Dr. Bonk. “The less poison ingested, the better.”
However, this can be difficult when you’re trying to address an actual rodent infestation, as you’ll need to place the poison around certain easily accessible parts of your home.
– If you’re going on vacation and need a pet sitter, make a point of sharing precautions and providing a to-do list in case anything happens. They’ll appreciate the warning and take extra care to keep your pooch safe.