Posted: Jun 12, 2012 11:45 PM by Hope Hanselman, KSBY News
Updated: Jun 13, 2012 8:13 AM
Local veterinarians say they treat hundreds of pets a year for what they call rodenticide.
Many homeowners and farmers use poisons to kill rodents and insects.
Vets say pets are getting into those deadly chemicals. In fact, it's most form of poison they treat. Now, they're warning pet owners these poisons can be found in the types of places dogs like to run off the leash. So, wherever you can find rodents, you should expect to find rodent poison.
"This is a big, big problem. We see it very, very often," Ofer Cherbinsky, veterinarian at Atascadero Pet Hospital, said.
Atascadero Pet Hospital says rodenticide is the most common form of poison they treat.
"We see something close to 100 to 200 cases a year."
Dr. Cherbinsky says these baits are flavored to attract rats, mice and gophers. He also says they attract dogs.
"Dogs will find it and they'll dig and they'll eat it."
He says most dogs won't get sick from eating a poisoned rodent. They'll get to the source of the poison more often. The best thing pet owners can do, he says, is to take them to the hospital immediately.
"It takes about at least three days from the time the dog has ingested it until they start showing the signs."
The chemicals stop blood clotting in dogs, leading them to eventually bleed out from whateve organ it's attacked. But, if the bleeding is internal, some owners may not be able to see the signs.
"Many dogs are dying from it because by the time they know they're dealing with it, it's too late."
Vets say symptoms of poisoning include dizziness, trouble standing or walking and heavy panting.
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