Recently we have seen several cases of this type of poisoning at our clinics.
For those enjoying a spot of gardening and wanting to get rid of those pesky snails and slugs, consider the health of your pets. Metaldehyde containing slug and snail baits, eg Slug Slam™, Blitzem™, can be quite toxic especially to dogs that seem to have little regard for the deterrents added to the bait.
Excess salivation, incoordination and tremors progressing to convulsions are the characteristic signs of poisoning, some animals die due to respiratory failure. If the level of poisoning is less severe then they can recover over the next 24-36 hours with treatment unless there is liver and kidney damage, leading to death after 1-3 days. The best success is with early treatment and fortunately the patients we have seen here, all survived!!
Preventing poisoning in the first place is preferable. Do not allow pets to access areas where metaldehyde is present. Even better still is if you must use bait, choose bait containing Iron EDTA eg Quash ™. This only poses a risk to pets at very high levels and has little or no effect on the environment. Quash™ is available at both our clinics.
Wishing you happy and safe gardening.