Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.

Snail, Slug Bait Poisoning in Dogs

Metaldehyde Poisoning in Dogs

Metaldehyde is a toxic substance found in slug and snail baits, as well as solid fuel for camp stoves. When ingested by dogs, it can lead to poisoning, primarily impacting their nervous system. This form of poisoning is frequently observed in coastal and low-lying regions where the use of slug and snail bait is common. While metaldehyde poisoning can affect both dogs and cats, it tends to occur more frequently in dogs.


  • Anxiety
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Excessive panting
  • Excessive drooling (ptyalism)
  • Uncoordinated walk
  • Muscle tremors
  • Convulsions
  • Hyperthermia
  • Increased sensitivity to light, touch, and/or sounds
  • Increased respiration (hyperpnea)


Ingestion of Metaldehyde.


Diagnosis of metaldehyde poisoning in your dog involves providing a detailed history of your dog’s health, including when the symptoms started and their nature, to your veterinarian. Questions may focus on potential exposure to slug and snail baits or other sources of metaldehyde. Your veterinarian will then perform a thorough physical examination, along with conducting a biochemistry profile, urinalysis, and complete blood count (CBC). The results of these tests may vary. A definitive diagnosis is typically achieved by confirming the presence of metaldehyde in bodily fluids such as vomit, stomach contents, and urine.


Treatment for a dog affected by metaldehyde poisoning requires immediate hospitalization and care. Regrettably, there is no specific antidote available. The primary goal of treatment is to remove the metaldehyde from the dog’s system. Your veterinarian will perform stomach pumping and administer activated charcoal to absorb the poison in the stomach and intestines if the dog is not experiencing convulsions. Restraints may be used to prevent injury. Additionally, fluid therapy is often required to rehydrate the dog.

Living and Management

It is crucial not to feed a dog that is experiencing convulsions or vomiting. The overall prognosis depends on factors such as the quantity of metaldehyde ingested, the promptness of treatment, and the quality of care provided. Without treatment, a dog may succumb to metaldehyde poisoning within a few hours of ingestion. Keep a close watch on your dog for vomiting and other symptoms, and contact your veterinarian immediately if any signs of poisoning occur.

Scroll to Top