Lead poisoning in dogs happens when dogs ingest or inhale products with lead. Exposure to small amounts of lead could pose not much threat but in large doses, it could lead to serious poisoning. There are lots of products in the house that contain lead that risks the health of dogs. Among these include construction material including paint, paint chips and roofing materials, bullets, fishing pole lead weights, batteries and lead gasoline to name a few. Read more information on antifreeze poisoning in dogs.
Symptoms of Dog Lead Poisoning
Here are common symptoms of lead poisoning in canines.
- Abdominal pain
- Behavior changes
- Lack of appetite
- Muscle spasms
Lead Poisoning in Dogs Diagnosis
- A blood count may be made to determine whether there is low red blood cell count. Anemia could be the result of lead toxicity.
- In lieu of a complete blood count, the stool of the dog could be examined instead. High concentration of lead in the stool is a sign of lead poisoning.
- X-rays of the chest and abdomen could also be performed since lead objects appear whitish or grayish on x-ray.
- A serum biochemistry test could be made to assess the general status of the dog’s health.
- If the veterinarian is still uncertain, he or she could recommend the testing of the concentration of lead in the blood of the dog. This is the definitive test to confirm the diagnosis.
Treatment for Lead Poisoning in Dogs
- The first step to treating lead poisoning in pets is removal of the lead from the intestinal tract. Among the procedure that could be made is induced vomiting, gastric lavage (pumping of the stomach), removal of the lead object via surgery and administration of chelating agents.
- The dog could also be given medication to relieve lead poisoning symptoms such as vomiting and seizures.
- Use of IV fluids could also help the dog maintain proper hydration and aid in the expulsion of the lead via the urinary tract.
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