Q:

What should you do if your dog eats mouse poison?

A:

According to Pet Poison Helpline, identifying the type of poison the animal ingested is essential to appropriate treatment. If the ingredients are not clearly visible on the label, the EPA registration number, which appears as EPA Reg. No. on the label, identifies the product. The veterinarian or local poison control number should be called.

Mouse and rat poisons contain a number of types of poison, Pet Poison Helpline explains. The most common are long-acting anticoagulants, which cause bleeding. The antidote for this type of poison is Vitamin K. Another increasingly common kind of mouse poison is cholecalciferol, or Vitamin D3. This is an extremely dangerous poison that causes kidney failure, even if the dog ingests only a small amount. Pet Poison Helpline advises that treatment includes intravenous fluids and medicines to remove calcium from the dog's body. The vet may follow the animal's calcium levels and kidney function for several weeks.

Bromethalin is a type of poison that causes swelling in the brain. Symptoms of bromethalin poisoning include tremors, seizures and paralysis. Treatment usually involves hospitalization for several days, intravenous fluids and medicines to control brain swelling. According to Pet Poison Helpline, this type of poison is more toxic to cats than to dogs.

The final category of mouse poison is zinc and aluminum phosphides.This type of poison produces phosphine gas, which is toxic when inhaled. Food increases the action of the poison, so it is extremely important to avoid feeding the animal until the veterinarian treats the dog. Pet Poison Helpline advises against inducing vomiting at home because the dog's vomit also is likely to emit phosphine gas.

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