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Symptoms Of Rat Poisoning

Symptoms Of Rat Poisoning: Unveiling the Signs in Humans and Dogs

Rat poisoning refers to the ingestion of substances designed to eliminate rodents but inadvertently affecting other animals, including humans and dogs. Chemicals like phosphide, bromethalin, and strychnine, known as rodenticides, contain toxic components that can lead to various symptoms and health issues.

Rat poisoning symptoms can vary based on the type of rodenticide ingested, the quantity, and the individual's health. Understanding these symptoms is crucial for timely intervention and appropriate medical care.

Stay tuned with our expert team from Critter Stop as we delve into specific symptoms observed in humans and dogs, shedding light on the signs that demand attention and care.

Physical Symptoms of Rat Poisoning in Humans

Nausea and Vomiting:

In the initial stages of rat poisoning, the patient might experience persistent nausea and frequent vomiting. These symptoms are the body's immediate response to ingesting toxic substances commonly found in rat poison. The aim is to expel harmful elements causing digestive distress.


Diarrhea is another common symptom of rat poisoning. The toxic components disrupt normal digestive function, resulting in loose and watery stools. The severity of diarrhea can vary based on the amount and type of poison ingested. It is also important to know the age of the patient, the poison effect in a child could be visible in a few minutes, causing even death. In an adult, could take a few hours to get complicated. 

Abdominal Pain:

Abdominal pain is a prevalent discomfort associated with rat poisoning. The toxic effects on internal organs, particularly the gastrointestinal system, can cause varying degrees of abdominal pain, including cramping, sharp pains, or a generalized ache.

Loss of Appetite:

Rat poisoning often leads to a significant loss of appetite. The toxic substances interfere with normal hunger and satiety signals, resulting in a diminished desire to eat. This contributes to weight loss over time.

Weight Loss:

Prolonged exposure to rat poison can result in noticeable weight loss. The toxic impact on the body's systems can lead to metabolic changes and a decreased ability to absorb nutrients from food.

Weakness and Fatigue:

General weakness and fatigue are common symptoms that accompany rat poisoning. The body expends significant energy in its attempt to counteract the toxic effects, leading to an overall sense of weakness and tiredness.

Muscle Tremors:

Uncontrolled muscle tremors are a neurological manifestation of rat poisoning. The toxic substances impact the central nervous system, leading to disruptions in normal muscle function.


Seizures represent a severe consequence of rat poisoning and demand urgent medical attention. The toxic impact on the nervous system can lead to abnormal electrical activity in the brain, triggering seizures.

If you experience any of these symptoms, seek medical attention promptly. Rat poisoning is a serious condition that requires professional intervention.


Some individuals might develop skin rashes as a reaction to exposure to rat poison. This can be due to an allergic reaction to the substance.

When we have provided our rat extermination services, we have found that the DIY approach is normally more problematic for homeowners than hiring a professional team like us. The risk of manipulating these chemicals is very high, reason wich we always recommend calling experts to handle this situation. 

Abdominal pain
Abdominal pain, vomits and diarrhea are some of the most common poisoning rat symptoms in humans. 

Neurological Symptoms of Rat Poisoning in Humans


Experiencing persistent headaches could be an indicator of the neurological impact of rat poison on the central nervous system. These headaches may vary in intensity and may persist, signaling potential disruption in the normal functioning of the brain.


Dizziness is another symptom that individuals might encounter. This could affect balance and coordination, making simple tasks challenging. If you find yourself feeling consistently dizzy, it's crucial to consider it as a potential symptom of rat poisoning.


Confusion is a concerning neurological symptom that may develop as the brain contends with the toxic effects of rat poison. Individuals might find it challenging to think clearly, make decisions, or remember basic information, indicating a serious impact on cognitive function.

Slurred Speech

The development of slurred speech is a clear manifestation of neurological impairment. Rat poison's impact on the central nervous system might interfere with the coordination of speech muscles, resulting in slurred or unclear speech patterns.

Unusual Behavior

Observing unusual behavior in yourself or others, such as disorientation or acting out of character, could be linked to rat poisoning. The toxic effects on the brain may lead to alterations in behavior, emphasizing the importance of seeking medical attention if such changes are noted.

These neurological symptoms are critical indicators of potential rat poisoning and should not be ignored. If you or someone you know experiences these symptoms, seek immediate medical attention for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

Internal Organ Damage Due to Rat Poisoning in Humans

Liver Damage

  • Severity: Rat poison can cause severe damage to the liver.
  • Function Impact: The liver's crucial functions, including detoxification and protein synthesis, may be compromised.
  • Health Consequences: Liver damage can lead to a range of health issues, emphasizing the significance of protecting this vital organ.

Kidney Damage

  • Filtration System: Rat poison can adversely affect the kidneys, compromising their role as the body's filtration system.
  • Impaired Function: Kidney damage may impair the ability to filter waste products and excess fluids.
  • Health Complications: Damage to the kidneys poses serious health risks, necessitating prompt medical attention.

Respiratory Failure

  • Extreme Consequence: In severe cases, rat poisoning can lead to respiratory failure.
  • Systemic Damage: The toxic substances can inflict systemic damage, impacting the respiratory system.
  • Life-Threatening: Respiratory failure is a life-threatening condition, requiring immediate medical intervention.

Understanding these points underscores the critical nature of seeking professional medical evaluation and treatment in cases of suspected rat poisoning. The potential complications highlight the importance of addressing rat poisoning promptly to ensure the best possible outcome for one's health.

Blood Symptoms of Rat Poisoning in Humans


  • Impact on Blood Composition: Rat poison can lead to changes in blood composition, potentially resulting in anemia.
  • Reduced Red Blood Cells: Anemia is characterized by a reduction in the number of red blood cells, impacting oxygen transport.
  • Symptoms: Fatigue, weakness, and paleness are common symptoms associated with anemia caused by rat poisoning.

Low Blood Pressure

  • Critical Symptom: Low blood pressure is a critical symptom that demands immediate attention.
  • Compromised Circulation: Rat poison's impact on blood vessels can lead to decreased blood pressure, affecting circulation.
  • Potential Consequences: Low blood pressure can result in dizziness, fainting, and organ damage if not promptly addressed.

Bleeding from the Nose, Mouth, and Gums

  • Visible Bleeding: Severe cases of rat poisoning can lead to visible bleeding from the nose, mouth, and gums.
  • Indication of Severity: Visible bleeding is a grave indication of the extent of systemic damage caused by rat poison.
  • Emergency Situation: Profuse bleeding requires urgent medical intervention to address the underlying cause and prevent further complications.

Understanding these blood-related symptoms is crucial for recognizing the severity of rat poisoning. If someone exhibits these symptoms, seeking immediate medical attention is imperative to ensure proper diagnosis and intervention. Rat poisoning can have serious consequences, and timely medical care is vital for the best possible outcome.

Rat Poisoning Symptoms in Dogs

When it comes to dogs, it is imperative for pet owners to be well-versed in potential physical symptoms that could signify rat poisoning. In the unfortunate event that you harbor suspicions that your dog might have ingested rat poison, it becomes paramount to be vigilant for the following signs:

Nausea and Vomiting

  • Dogs may manifest signs of nausea, accompanied by recurring episodes of vomiting, which can be indicative of an underlying issue.


  • Rat poisoning might lead to an escalation in the frequency of bowel movements, coupled with the emergence of loose stools.

Abdominal Pain

  • Dogs might exhibit signs of discomfort or pain localized in the abdominal region, serving as a potential red flag for internal distress.

Loss of Appetite

  • A discernible reduction in interest or an outright refusal to partake in regular meals may suggest a disturbance linked to potential poisoning.

Weight Loss

  • Sudden and unexplained weight loss can be a concerning indication of the adverse effects of rat poisoning on your dog's overall health.

Weakness and Fatigue

  • An overarching sense of lethargy, a notable lack of energy, and weakness might be observable symptoms attributed to the toxic effects of ingested rat poison.

Muscle Tremors

  • Rat poisoning could induce involuntary shaking or trembling of muscles, presenting itself as observable muscle tremors.


  • In more severe cases, the toxic impact of rat poison may escalate to uncontrolled and sudden movements or convulsions, signaling the occurrence of seizures.

If you notice any of these distressing symptoms in your canine companion and suspect rat poisoning, it is of utmost importance to promptly seek professional veterinary attention. Early detection and timely intervention play a pivotal role in securing a better prognosis for your beloved pet.

sad dog
Our loyal friends could be affected by the rat poisoning. 

Neurological Symptoms of Rat Poisoning in Dogs

In cases of suspected rat poisoning in dogs, attentive observation for potential neurological symptoms is crucial. These symptoms not only indicate possible neurological impact but also underscore the urgency of the situation. Here's a breakdown of these neurological symptoms:

  • Headache:
    • Dogs may subtly indicate signs of discomfort or pain in the head region, suggesting neurological distress. Recognizing such cues requires keen observation for subtle behavioral changes.
  • Dizziness:
    • Manifestation of a loss of balance or unsteadiness in movement is a neurological symptom associated with rat poisoning. Disorientation affecting coordination and spatial awareness can pose challenges for the affected dog.
  • Confusion:
    • Onset of confusion, characterized by disorientation and a lack of mental clarity, is a notable neurological symptom. Dogs may exhibit behaviors indicating a struggle to comprehend their surroundings or respond appropriately.
  • Slurred Speech:
    • While dogs don't communicate through speech like humans, changes in vocalization patterns or difficulty in making normal sounds could indicate neurological issues. Alterations in the dog's ability to vocalize should be considered part of potential neurological impact.
  • Unusual Behavior:
    • A comprehensive neurological assessment includes monitoring for any deviation from normal behavior patterns. Sudden aggression, withdrawal, or abnormal movements may be observed, signifying a potential disruption in neurological function.

If your dog displays any of these concerning neurological symptoms and rat poisoning is suspected, seeking immediate veterinary attention is imperative. Neurological symptoms often require swift intervention to mitigate potential complications and ensure the best possible outcome for your beloved pet. Early detection and proactive measures play a pivotal role in addressing the complexities associated with neurological distress induced by rat poisoning.

Internal Organ Damage Due to Rat Poisoning in Dogs

In cases of suspected rat poisoning in dogs, it's essential to be aware of potential internal organ damage. Rat poison toxicity can have severe consequences on various organs. Here's an overview:

Liver Damage

  • Rat poisoning can lead to significant damage to the liver, a vital organ responsible for various metabolic functions. Signs of liver damage may include jaundice, lethargy, and changes in appetite.

Kidney Damage

  • The kidneys, crucial for filtering waste and maintaining fluid balance, may suffer damage due to rat poisoning. Symptoms of kidney damage include increased thirst, changes in urination patterns, and overall weakness.

Respiratory Failure

  • In severe cases, rat poisoning can result in respiratory failure. This life-threatening condition demands immediate attention and may be characterized by difficulty breathing, labored breath, or even respiratory collapse.

Recognizing the signs of internal organ damage is critical for timely intervention. If you suspect rat poisoning in your dog and observe symptoms related to liver or kidney issues, or indications of respiratory distress, seek urgent veterinary care. Prompt action is crucial for mitigating the impact on internal organs and ensuring the best possible outcome for your pet.

Blood Symptoms of Rat Poisoning in Dogs

Suspecting rat poisoning in dogs warrants attention to potential blood-related symptoms, indicating the severity of the toxic effects. Here are key blood-related symptoms to be mindful of:


  • Rat poisoning can lead to anemia, a condition characterized by a reduced number of red blood cells. Symptoms may include lethargy, pale gums, and weakness.

Low Blood Pressure

  • Toxicity from rat poison may result in low blood pressure. Signs of low blood pressure can include dizziness, weakness, and, in severe cases, collapse.

Bleeding from the Nose, Mouth, and Gums

  • One of the most critical indicators of rat poisoning is bleeding. Dogs may experience bleeding from the nose, mouth, or gums, signaling severe internal bleeding. This is a medical emergency requiring immediate veterinary attention.

Recognizing these blood-related symptoms is vital for timely intervention. If you suspect rat poisoning and observe signs of anemia, low blood pressure, or bleeding, seek urgent veterinary care. Swift action is crucial for addressing the blood-related complications and ensuring the best possible outcome for your canine companion.

Treatment of Rat Poisoning For Humans

a. Gastric Decontamination

  • In cases of suspected rat poisoning, medical professionals may employ gastric decontamination methods such as induced vomiting or gastric lavage to remove the poison from the stomach.

b. Activated Charcoal

  • Activated charcoal may be administered to humans as it can bind to certain poisons, preventing their absorption in the gastrointestinal tract.

c. Intravenous Fluids

  • Intravenous fluids help maintain hydration and support kidney function, aiding in the elimination of toxins from the body.

d. Vitamin K Injections

  • Since many rat poisons interfere with blood clotting by inhibiting Vitamin K, injections of Vitamin K are often administered to counteract this effect.

e. Dialysis

  • In severe cases, dialysis may be considered to help remove toxins from the bloodstream.

Treatment of Rat Poisoning For Dogs

a. Gastric Decontamination

  • Veterinary professionals may induce vomiting or perform gastric lavage to remove the poison from the dog's stomach.

b. Activated Charcoal

  • Administering activated charcoal can help bind to toxins in the gastrointestinal tract and limit absorption.

c. Intravenous Fluids

  • Intravenous fluids are crucial for maintaining hydration and supporting organ function.

d. Vitamin K Injections

  • Since rat poisons can lead to bleeding disorders in dogs, Vitamin K injections are commonly given to counteract the anticoagulant effects.

e. Dialysis

  • In severe cases, where the dog's kidneys are significantly affected, dialysis may be considered to assist in toxin removal.

Contact poison control immediately or veterinary attention if rat poisoning is suspected. Treatment effectiveness depends on the promptness of intervention and the specific circumstances of poisoning.

Prevention Measures

Use Baits and Traps

  • Strategic Employment: Utilize rodent baits and traps strategically to control the rodent population effectively.
  • Non-Poisonous Solutions: Opt for non-poisonous alternatives to minimize the risk of accidental exposure to toxins.
  • Regular Maintenance: Consistently check and reset traps as needed to ensure continuous efficacy in rodent control.
mouse trap
Using traditional traps is a good way to solve your rodent situation without using any chemicals.

Seal Up Cracks and Holes

  • Secure Entry Points: Prevent rodents from gaining access by meticulously sealing potential entry points in buildings.
  • Comprehensive Inspection: Conduct a thorough inspection of walls, windows, and doors to identify and address any gaps or openings.
  • Ensuring a Secure Environment: Create a secure living environment by eliminating opportunities for rodents to infiltrate indoor spaces.

Keep Food and Trash Covered

  • Proper Storage: Discourage rodents by storing food in sealed containers to minimize enticing smells.
  • Waste Management: Practice proper waste management to reduce attractants in and around living spaces.
  • Minimizing Rodent Appeal: By eliminating potential food sources, you decrease the likelihood of rodents being drawn to your living areas.

A Comprehensive FAQ Guide

Whether you're concerned about your furry friend, a fellow human, or feline companions, this FAQ guide provides insights into the diverse symptoms associated with rat poisoning. From early signs to the critical steps of seeking professional help, explore the answers to common questions regarding the rat poison symptoms in humans, dogs and cats. Stay informed to safeguard the well-being of your loved ones and pets.

Q: What are the symptoms of rat poison in a dog?

A: Common symptoms of rat poisoning in a dog include lethargy, weakness, pale gums, difficulty breathing, and unexplained bleeding. Immediate veterinary attention is crucial if you suspect poisoning.

Q: What are the symptoms of rat poison in humans?

A: Symptoms of rat poisoning in humans may include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and, in severe cases, bleeding. Seek medical help promptly if exposure is suspected.

Q: What are the symptoms of rat poisoning in cats?

A: Rat poisoning symptoms in cats may mirror those in dogs and can include lethargy, difficulty breathing, and bleeding. Consult a veterinarian if you observe any concerning signs.

Q: What are the symptoms of rat poisoning in humans?

A: Symptoms in humans may range from gastrointestinal issues like nausea to severe complications such as internal bleeding. Seek immediate medical attention if rat poisoning is suspected.

Q: What are the symptoms of rat poison in dogs?

A: Rat poison symptoms in dogs encompass lethargy, loss of appetite, difficulty breathing, and bleeding. Swift veterinary intervention is vital for the best outcome.

Q: Signs and symptoms of rat poisoning in dogs?

A: Signs include weakness, pale gums, and bleeding. If your dog displays these symptoms, contact a vet promptly for a thorough examination and treatment.

Q: Early symptoms of rat poisoning in dogs?

A: Early symptoms may include lethargy, loss of appetite, and weakness. Early detection and veterinary care enhance the chances of successful treatment.

Q: What are the symptoms of eating rat poison?

A: Symptoms of consuming rat poison can range from gastrointestinal distress to severe bleeding. Seek immediate medical attention for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Q: How much rat poison is considered dangerous?

A: The danger of consuming rat poison varies, and even a small amount can be harmful. If ingestion is suspected, don't think about how much rat poison has been injested, instead seek immediate medical or veterinary assistance.

Q: Is there a poison control hotline for consuming rat poison?

A: Yes, contact your local poison control center or an emergency vet hotline if someone or a pet ingests rat poison. Swift action is crucial for a positive outcome.

Q: What are the most common chemicals used as rodenticides?

A: Before we named a few: phosphide, bromethalin, and strychnine. But there are others: zinc, warfarin, and cholecalciferol. Other chemicals like arsenic, barium, and thallium, despite being used to deal with other critters, are not commonly used for rodents. 

Q: What are the steps to take if I suspect someone ingest rat poison?

A: Contact poison control immediately. Do not wait for symptoms. They will guide you on the necessary steps for a rapid and effective response.

Remember, early detection and professional guidance are crucial for addressing rat poisoning symptoms in both pets and humans. If you suspect poisoning, seek medical or veterinary help promptly.


Rat poisoning poses a significant threat to both humans and animals, emphasizing the importance of proactive prevention. Prioritizing preventive measures such as using baits and traps, sealing entry points, putting this rodenticide in a safe place, and practicing proper food storage substantially reduces the risk of exposure to dangerous toxins. These strategies contribute to fostering a safer living environment, prioritizing the well-being of households and pets.

Vigilance, swift action in case of suspected poisoning, and seeking professional guidance are essential components of effective prevention and mitigation strategies. By adopting these measures, you contribute to creating a home that is not only rodent-free but also safe for everyone who resides within.

As rodent removal experts, at Critter Stop we have provided thousands of services related to mice and rats. We believe that hiring a professional team of extermination would be safer for you, your family, and your pets than handling these toxic chemicals by yourself. If you need a hand on this, we are ready to pick up your call at (214) 234-2616.

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