Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) can be found in some forms of rodenticides. Most baits contain 0.075% cholecalciferol. A single toxic dose is 0.5-3 mg/kg (or about 1 tablespoon of bait for a 40 lb. dog) in dogs while a lethal dose is 4.5 to 12 mg/kg. Cholecalciferol causes hypercalcemia (increased blood calcium levels) and hyperphosphatemia (increased blood phosphorus levels).
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Rodenticide (vit d analog) toxicity
This rise in values can cause the soft tissues in the body to become mineralized. This can lead to kidney failure, heart abnormalities, weakness, anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea, increased thirst and increased urination. The first signs are usually seen within 18-36 hours after ingestion and may persist for weeks. Treatment includes early decontamination (inducing vomiting, activated charcoal) if possible. Once clinical signs have developed, aggressive fluid therapy and medications to help lower the calcium and phosphorus levels are warranted. Frequent rechecks of blood values are necessary to guide treatment. Prognosis is good if caught and treated early; more variable if treatment is delayed until clinical signs appear.