On arriving at the hospital, Oreo was immediately taken into the treatment area and triaged. His body temperature was elevated at 104.5 ° F. He was unable to stand, and was shaking and salivating. His face, whiskers and ears were twitching. His heart rate was elevated at 200 beats per minute, as were his respirations at 48 breaths per minute. The nursing staff started to place an IV catheter into Oreo's foreleg but he had a grand mal seizure while the fur was being clipped from his leg. He was treated with an injection of valium to stop the seizure.
After a review of his history and discussing the case with his owners, Oreo was admitted to the hospital to be treated for Permethrin Toxicity. Immediate treatments included a thorough bathing to wash off any of the residual over-the-counter flea product, an IV injection of robaxin/methocarbimal to treat the tremors, and valium as needed for the seizures. Fluids and prophylactic antibiotics were also started to maintain hydration. Oreo's body temperature, respiratory rate and heart rate all normalized within hours of admission to the hospital. Initial routine blood work was normal.
Oreo was hospitalized for three days to treat his tremors. He did not seizure again after the first night and he started eating on his own the following morning. His nursing care included monitoring for tremors and IV robaxin to keep the tremors low. He was also housed in a darkened cage with minimal stimulation to help decrease the tremors. By the 2 nd evening in the hospital, Oreo was able to stand and use the litter pan on his own. By the 3 rd day of hospitalization, he was walking well and was no longer twitching. He was later discharged to his owners.
A diagnosis of Permethrin Toxicity is made from exposure or change in exposure to permethrins, an absence of other toxic exposure and eliminating the likelihood of other diseases such as liver failure, brain damage or trauma.
Permethrin is a synthetic pyrethroid insecticide used in many common household bug sprays and flea treatments. Toxicity for mammals is generally thought to be low, but Permethrins can affect sodium channels and cause toxicity to the nervous system in dogs, cats, rabbits, cows, horses and goats. Permethrin Toxicity is seen more frequently in cats than dogs, and is also weight dependent: a smaller cat is more likely to be affected than a larger cat. Toxicity is manifested as seizures, twitching, tremors, hyperesthesia (increased sensitivity to stimulation) and hyperthermia (increased body temperature). If twitching and tremors are prolonged and uncontrolled, muscle damage can result. If seizures are constant and uncontrolled, brain edema (swelling) and irreversible brain damage can result. Permethrin Toxicity can be fatal.
There are multiple “over the counter” spot-on type flea and tick products available in grocery stores, pet stores and discount stores which contain permethrins. Many of these products are labeled for use in cats as well as dogs. Cases of toxicity in cats have been reported with one time dosage of a product marketed for cats, a repeat dosing of a product previously used without problems, and more rarely from cats interacting with dogs treated with the product.
Despite her advanced age, Spotty was in good body condition with a visibly distended abdomen and mild vaginal discharge. Routine bloodwork demonstrated a mild anemia consistent with advanced pregnancy, and the other internal chemistries were normal. After discussion with the GVH doctors, her owners elected to have “Spotty” proceed to C-section as she had passed one puppy several hours earlier and was not having active contractions.
In surgery, the cause of the poor progression of Spotty's labor was obvious. She had one non-viable puppy in the birth canal, which was “stuck”. There was also one additional non-viable puppy with a separated placenta, and a last puppy that had a faint heart beat but did not have a separated placenta. Due to the non-healthy nature of Spotty's uterus and her owner's wish to avoid future accidental breeding, Spotty was spayed in a routine manner. Her one living puppy received acute care and CPR to support his heart and respirations.
Within 30 minutes of the surgery, the puppy had a good suckle reflex and was vibrant and moving around. Spotty recovered quickly from anesthesia and was discharged to her family with her new puppy the following morning. They both came back to GVH for re-check three days later. The puppy, now named “Figaro”, was gaining weight, eating well and Spotty was being a good mother.
Certain species of mushrooms are considered to be relatively non-toxic, while other species can be very toxic. Of the toxic species, some can potentially cause liver or kidney damage, while others may produce severe gastrointestinal or even neurological effects. Toxic mushrooms can often be found growing right alongside non-toxic ones. Because of this, identifying each type of mushroom existing on your property can be very difficult. The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center advises keeping all wild mushrooms out of the reach of pets, and recommends that all wild mushroom ingestion be treated very seriously. If accidental exposure to wild mushrooms occurs, seek immediate veterinary assistance by contacting your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center.