Hospital Cases

Rat Sac Poisoning in a Dog

Milo ate a large block of Rat Sac when his owner's back was turned a few days earlier.

He presented with life threatening bleeding in his lungs. There were fresh blood clots in the mouth and blood was dripping from his lips and gums. Milo’s breathing was harsh. The gums were slightly pale. On close examination of the gums, small pinpoint red spots (haemorrhages) could be seen.

Mark gave an injection of Vitamin K (the antidote for Rat Sac) but the bleeding continued to get worse. A quick clotting test showed a very slow time for Milo’s blood to clot.

We suspected Milo had bled so much his body had run out of platelets which are special blood cells that cause blood to clot. In cases like this, the platelets have been trying to clot the blood wherever it is leaking from but eventually their numbers are too low.

Giving Vitamin K only works against the poison itself- it does not replace these “lost platelets” so the bleeding continues.

Fresh blood was required. Sia, a very brave gentle giant, put her paw up. Her Mum brought Sia over to the hospital where she was sedated and donated one unit of fresh blood.

Within 20 minutes of giving Sia’s fresh blood (and platelets), Milo's bleeding stopped and he went on to make a great recovery.

Sia was a bit sleepy that evening but was back to old tricks the next day. Milo’s owners were very grateful for Sia’s kind actions.

See also...

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