D-Con Cat Poisoning Signs & Symptoms

Written by megan allyce snider
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D-Con Cat Poisoning Signs & Symptoms
d-CON is dangerous to cats as well as mice. (cat image by tnk333 from Fotolia.com)

D-CON is an anticoagulant rodenticide. It kills mice by causing them to bleed internally. After that they bleed out from areas such as the nose or mouth when too much blood builds up in the body. Unfortunately, pets such as cats can get into your d-CON and consume it. Then your cat will begin to bleed just as a mouse would. It takes a long time to actually notice the symptoms of d-CON ingestion. Once symptoms are observed, your cat needs to go to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Cats can die because of d-CON ingestion.


The signs of ingestion of d-CON poisoning in cats are laboured breathing, lethargy and loss of energy, loss of appetite, blood in stool, vomit or urine and bleeding from the nose or gums. Other signs are hematomas (a collection of blood in the body that is outside the internal organs), bruising of skin, ears, eyes, pallor and unusual weakness. The most common cause of death for cats who have ingested d-CON is bleeding into the chest cavity.


Your pet will not show symptoms until 72 to 96 hours after ingestion. After this period has passed, your cat will begin to show symptoms such as bleeding from skin, gums, ears, nose and eyes. Blood may be in the urine, faeces or saliva. Bruising will occur as the blood seeps into the skin. The blood loss leads to fatigue, tiredness, lethargy and decreased appetite. Bleeding into the lungs causes coughing and laboured breathing. The stomach may protrude if it is filling with blood. A cat that has lost a lot of blood will have colourless or white gums. Signs of shock, including fainting, collapsing, loss of conscious, decreased respiratory and heart rate occur when your cat has lost a significant amount of blood. Unless treatment is administered, your cat will die from the poison.


Vitamin K is a readily available antidote for anticoagulant rodenticides. Your cat will probably receive Vitamin K once or twice a day for four to eight weeks. It may be given orally or by a shot. Any animal that shows symptoms of severe blood loss is taken to the hospital and given blood transfusions until it is healthy enough to start treatment.

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