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Lucky Pickles

This is Pickles, a 7 month old Jack Russell Terrier. Pickles’ owner became concerned when he wasn’t his usual bouncy self. Pickles has a reputation for chewing toys, so their first suspicion was that he may have eaten something he shouldn’t.... He was taken to the Rothwell surgery, but soon transferred to the Morley hospital when it was realised how ill he was. When he initially didn’t respond to treatment we did an abdominal ultrasound scan to look for the problem, but we found something unexpected. His abdomen appeared normal but fluid was visible in his chest, which definitely shouldn’t have been there! We drained some of the fluid off and found it to be blood! Poor Pickles was bleeding into his chest. In a young, otherwise well dog with no history of any trauma, we suddenly asked ourselves the question, could inquisitive little Pickles have eaten rat poison?

Rat poison contains anticoagulants and is often hidden in little plastic boxes, very tempting chew toys for dogs! Pickles owner travels around to livery yards as part of her work, taking him with her, so it would be quite possible he could have eaten some without her knowing. Anticoagulants stop blood from clotting and if not treated can lead to fatal haemorrhage.

Pickles was quickly started on vitamin K to help his blood clot and he had to have a plasma transfusion, but within 24 hours he was already more lively and eating well. Pickles was ready to be discharged the following day. Although still on treatment he is doing really well and is expected to make a full recovery. He has been a very lucky puppy! Had his condition not been diagnosed when it was, he could have continued to bleed.

Remember, if you are using any form of rat poison, make sure it is well out of reach of all pets, as they might not all be as lucky as Pickles.

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