Rat bait is very poisonous to dogs.
Less that a teaspoon is known to have a negative effect on dogs health. The smell is what attracts them to eat the bait which is then is absorbed. Within 2 – 3 days the active ingredients cause internal bleeding which causes significant damage if left undetected or untreated.
A key sign your pet is in difficulty is their gums will be very pale. Almost a white grey colour. Other serious signs include them suddenly collapsing or have blood coming from the nose or mouth.
If your dog has eaten the bait in the last 12 – 24 hours the hospital treats by giving medicine to cause vomiting. This is not very attractive, but quite effective. Following, on from this a dose of charcoal is provided which prevents any more poison being absorbed. In some cases antidote tablets are given for care at home.
If the bait was eaten days ago, it will be a longer time in hospital. During their stay treatment will often be blood testing, injections, possibly oxygen therapy to help them breathe, fluids and blood transfusions.
Successful recovery is quite variable. Unfortunately, there is always uncertainty and risk with treatment due to time-frames and amount absorbed. The take home message is: ‘If your think your dog has eaten rat bait, visit a vet immediately’