Rat bait has become an increasingly popular choice for controlling rodents over the years due to the clean nature in which the poison works. Some types of rat bait are anti-coagulants, meaning that it works by causing uncontrolled internal bleeding. Rat bait is an attractive treat – it’s meant to taste delicious to entice rats into chowing down on their last meal. However, there is an increasing number of incidents of ingesting this dangerous poison in our pets. Unfortunately, it is not always easy to spot when your pet has consumed rat bait, as it can take up to five days for symptoms to develop, at which stage your pet is already at a high risk of fatal internal bleeding.

Tips for using rat bait safely

  • Keep rat bait out of reach from pets
  • Keep note of where the bait is placed and if possible, create a barrier around the bait to ensure pets do not enter the area
  • Use a rat sized bait station to place rat bait in, which are guarded and will protect both children and pets from the poison
  • Keep rat bait well away from pet food
  • Some “experts” will advise to use pet food in conjunction with rat bait, as rats are attracted to competing food sources – do not attempt to do this, as pets have a keen nose for their own food and may accidentally track down the bait
  • If going away on holidays or out of the house, store rat bait in clip-seal containers high up in the cupboard and out of reach of pets
  • Use baits when pets are away from the house for prolonged periods of time (such as taking pets on a holiday)


Symptoms to look out for

If your pet does ingest rat bait, or is suspected to have swallowed poison, look out for the symptoms outlined below and seek vet assistance immediately.

  • Lethargy
  • Collapsing
  • Vomiting
  • Pale or white gums
  • Panting
  • Coughing
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Bruises in the mouth or on the skin
  • Swollen joints
  • Bleeding from the nose or mouth

For more information contact your local vet.

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