When the weather gets cooler, mice and rats who were perfectly happy to live outside during the summer and early fall may start trying to move indoors – potentially into YOUR house! As you and/or your neighbours try to control or prevent this from happening, your pet could be at risk for exposure very toxic, potentially life-threatening rodent baits and poisons. The active compounds in these products are known as rodenticides and while there are a variety of them on the market that work to kill the rodents by different mechanisms, they ALL have the potential to be dangerous to pets.
Dr Justine Lee, a well known veterinary toxicologist and emergency medicine specialist recently produced a very informative podcast about the dangers of these products to your pets and is well worth the 15 minute listen. (Click here to listen)
Here are some of her ‘Take Home’ points:
• If you think your pet may have eaten mouse or rat poison, seek professional advice ASAP. Either contact your veterinarian or call the 1-800 number on the product packaging and follow their directions. (Tip – If you bring your pet to the veterinarian, bring along any product packaging and any vomit your pet may have produced)
• Treating a pet that has eaten rodent poison can be a challenging and very expensive endeavor – always better to try and prevent it from happening in the first place.
• It is always risky to bring rodenticides into your home or pets environment no matter how well you think you have ‘pet proofed’
• Consider using old fashioned ‘snap traps’ instead – while no one likes to see a cute little deer mouse in the trap or deal with the ‘ick’ factor of unloading and disposing of the rodent bodies, it is probably a faster and more humane death for them than eating poison and suffering from internal bleeding or swelling of the brain 🙁 (Another option to consider might be live traps that allow you to relocate those unwelcome little house guests)