Would you know what to do if your dog suddenly walked into the room with an open container of something poisonous in his mouth? Or, what if he suddenly began showing some of the symptoms of being poisoned?
According to WebMD,
“last year, there were more than 100,000 cases of pet poisoning in the U.S. Many of these were caused by household substances that may seem perfectly harmless to you.”
When your pet is poisoned, immediate and appropriate action by you is essential to your dog’s outcome.
Here are simple but vital steps to take if you suspect your dog has been poisoned:
1. Obviously, remove the toxic substance from your dog’s mouth and reach.
2. If at all possible, identify what your pet ingested or was exposed to. If you can find a container look for a label with ingredients listed on it.
3. When you have the label information contact the Pet Poison Helpline at 1-855-213-6680 FREE or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 1-800-426-4435 FREE or your veterinarian.
These centers will be able to determine if the substance is toxic to your dog and what immediate first aid measures you should take.
Toxins that have been ingested usually require you to induce vomiting, but for some toxins and corrosive items, such as batteries inducing vomiting is contraindicated.
4. Do not give your dog anything that you think might help counteract the poison unless advised to by the veterinarian and the poison helpline.
5. If your dog needs treatment by your veterinarian or an emergency veterinary facility, if you have a container from the toxin or a label bring it with you, and get someone to ride in the car with you so that they can hold the dog while you’re driving.
In the case of exposure to flammable materials or toxins dangerous to humans you may need to follow guidelines from the poison helpline to prevent exposure to yourself and others.
The symptoms of poisoning vary depending on the type of poison or toxin your dog has come in contact with.
Poisoning can include all or some of these symptoms:
- Rapid breathing
- Rapid heart rate
- Loss of coordination
If your dog begins displaying any of these symptoms or ingests anything toxic, call for help and take him to the vet!