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My Pet Ate a Rat, Should I Take it to the Vet?

You’re watching your dog play and chase a ball when suddenly he becomes fixated on something in a bush. In that moment your game of ball and chase is forgotten as your canine playmate dives in that bush. You’re confused until he soon he bounds out with a rat in his jaws chomping and then gulp! Before you can do anything to stop him, he has swallowed that filthy vermin. It is a shocking realization and completely understandable that you would be gravely concerning for your pet. Cats have been eating rodents since the dawn of time, but as everyone knows, rodents are dangerous and very often full of disease. Can this affect your pet? Should you take them to the vet?

Toxoplasmosis and Worms

Rodents carry undesirable and deadly diseases. One disease that your pet can develop from eating rodents is toxoplasmosis. Your pet can become infected with the protozoan organism toxoplasma by eating rodents or rabbits that have toxoplasmosis cysts on their muscles. Cats fair better than dogs if they ingest this, as the parasite lives in the intestine causing very little harm, unless the cat has a weakened immune system. In dogs however, it can make them quite ill causing diarrhea, pneumonia, or liver problems.

Your pet can also become infected with roundworm by ingesting rodents also infected by roundworm in their muscles. They live in their intestinal tract, feeding off the contents, growing 8-12 cm long. It can be quite disconcerting if they pass them. Getting them on deworming medicine is necessary.

Secondary Poisoning

There is a risk that if your pet eats a rodent that only recently ingested rodent poison, that this could pose a lethal risk to them as well. As we all know, rat poison is quite dangerous and even deadly. The level of toxicity depends on timing. Getting them to a vet as soon as possible to minimize the effects is vital. The vet can administer doses of Vitamin K and help your pet pass the toxic chemicals out as past as possible. Bruising as well as bloody stools and urine are signs of rat poison ingestion and immediate action is essential.

Get to the Vet Immediately

Due to the dangers rodents pose to humans and pets alike, there are many chances you take by not getting your pet to the vet. To keep them safe from rodent diseases, regular check ups with a vet are also important. If there are large numbers of rodents around your home however, your pets simply can’t help themselves and will devour these filthy vermin. Pointe Pest Control will help you keep your home and yard rodent free so your pets are safer from the temptation. Our rodent control methods are effective as well as safe and non-toxic for pets. Give us a call today, we are happy to eliminate your rodent problems.