Rat Bait Toxicity
During the cooler months we see more animals presenting to the clinic with Rat Bait Toxicity. As many are aware, baits designed to eradicate rodents have anticoagulants in them which essentially means they impair our pets ability to clot their blood. This means that a very small bleed anywhere in the body can turn into a life threatening problem.
While there is no such thing as a safe bait and ideally we would not recommend using them at all, here are a few tips to minimise your pets risk;
- Use bait stations when dispensing baits and put the stations up off the ground away from pets
- Pick up any dead rodents you see around the place to minimise the chance of dogs and cats eating them- dead rodents are enough to
cause toxicity in dogs and cats
- While no baits are "safe" to animals, try to pick baits that require multiple doses such as Bayer's Racumin- this means that by the time
the animal succumbs to the bait it has already metabolised a lot of the toxins leading to less effect on your dog or cat.
- If you live in a rural area then it can be assumed that many grain and dairy farms have baits out so do not let your animals wander
What happens if your pet does consume a bait or dead rodent?
Bring them in immediately, because with rapid treatment we may be able to prevent the nasty effects of the bait from affecting the animal. We cannot stress this enough. Many people I hear from do not bring their pets in because they appeared fine in the first 24 hours so "they must be alright". Rat bait can take anywhere from 1-5 days AFTER ingestion to cause signs of toxicity, however if they have just ingested it we can cause the animal to vomit and avoid these effects.
What to look out for if you suspect your pet has rat bait toxicity:
Lethargy (weakness) and Depression
Loss of appetite
Bleeding on the gum-line
Blood in the urine or stool
Small little bruises over its body
If you see any of these signs, or are suspicious that your pet has ingested a poisoned rodent or the bait itself we strongly recommend you give us a call.