Poisoning should be the concern of every dog owner, as well as having other pets in the house. Some pet owners fear that an unfriendly neighbor might deliberately poison their dog because of some real or imagined misbehavior. But cases such as these are, fortunately, very rare.
More often, pet poisoning is the result of someone’s ignorance or carelessness. For example, your pet can get lead poisoning if he is allowed to chew on painted objects or to lick old paint cans laying around the garage.
Perhaps you are cleaning and have been spraying for insects or small rodents with an agent that contains phosphorous. Several sniffs of this and your dog can develop serious phosphorous poisoning. If you are trying to get rid of rats and mice with a rodent poison, there is a fair chance that your pet might try a sample.
When playing outside, your dog can nip the leaves of bushes that have been sprayed. Or, your cat may lick his paws and feet after running over an area that has been sprayed with insecticide.
The family garbage can, an attractive nuisance to dogs, must also share a major load of the blame for pet poisoning. Usually, this is where a dog finds old pills, powders, medicines, and decaying meat (most common form of sickness from garbage cans).
What to do in the case of poisoning
When you think your dog or other pet has been poisoned, call your veterinarian immediately. If he asks you to induce vomiting, the usual emetics are hydrogen peroxide mixed with an equal amount of water; common table salt mixed with 2 teaspoons to a cup of warm water.
Family remedies from home medicine cabinets are not suited for pets. Tonics that contain an amount of strychnine that has been proven beneficial to human beings are often extremely dangerous since dogs are highly sensitive to this drug.
Pet poisoning can have a sudden, devastating effect on your pet when large doses are taken. Or, if ingested over a period of time, in small amounts, the poison will gradually weaken him.
It is not difficult to tell when your dog has been poisoned. The signs are quite definite. He may be either nervous and excited or depressed. His symptoms may include trembling, vomiting, and convulsions. Your dog may also develop blue gums, cloudiness in the eyes, and blood-streaked diarrhea. Depending upon the kind of poison ingested, one or more of these signs may be seen.