My Dog Ate Rat Poop What Should I Do? (Reviewed by Vet)

Reviewed By Gemma Cliffin BSC BVSC MRCVS •  Updated: 04/25/23 •  3 min read
Dog Severe Toxicity Level
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Dog Ate Rat Poop

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Dogs are famous for eating some of the grossest things! Some dogs are even prone to eating poop of all kinds, including rat poop! This can be normal behavior in dogs, but can it make a dog sick if he eats rat poop? That’s the question we’ll explore in this article!

Has your dog eaten rat poop? Are you worried the rat poop can make your dog sick? If so, you’ve come to the right place. We understand that it’s gross and worrying when your dog eats something that he shouldn’t.

We’ve put together information about rat poop and whether it can make a dog sick. Let’s get started!

It is strongly recommended to contact a Pet Poison Helpline or your veterinarian.

What is Rat Poop?

Rat poop is excrement that is produced by rats. Poop is produced from the food the rat has eaten and passed through the animal’s digestive tract. Gross!

Rat poop is common in many parts of the US and is easily accessible for dogs. But can rat poop make a dog sick?

Rat Poop & Dogs

Unfortunately, rat poop can make a dog sick. There are a couple of main concerns with rat poop, including:

Stomach upset: may include vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea.These symptoms will usually resolve on their own. But if they last longer than 12 to 24 hours, it’s best to call the vet.

Pathogens: rat poop can contain various pathogens that can cause serious illness, including toxoplasmosis, andleptospirosis.

Poison: many people use rat or rodent poison to get rid of the critters. It’s possible a dog could eat rat poop that contains rat poison and become sick.

The last two concerns can be serious in a dog and even lead to death if not treated.

Symptoms of Rat Poop Ingestion in Dogs

If your dog has eaten a small amount of rat poop then he might not show any symptoms at all. If he has become infected with a pathogen from eating rat poop, his symptoms will depend on what he has been infected with. If your dog has eaten a lot of rat poop that contains poison, he may show serious symptoms such as:

If you notice any of these symptoms in your dog, call the vet immediately. This could be an emergency.

Treatment of Rat Poop Ingestion in Dogs

Treatment depends on your dog’s symptoms and the vet’s diagnosis. But we can safely say that the best prognosis is for dogs that receive prompt medical treatment.

So, if your home is suffering from a rat infestation, it may be necessary to call a professional exterminator to tackle the problem. And all droppings will need to be cleaned up. What’s more, it’s best to train your fur baby not to eat rat poop or other droppings in the future. Prevention is always the best medicine!

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Gemma Cliffin BSC BVSC MRCVS

This article has been reviewed and approved by an independent Veterinarian: Dr Gemma Cliffin MRCVS is an experienced small animal vet who combines her love of writing alongside working in practice. Since her graduation from the University of Liverpool in 2014 she has worked in a wide variety of roles including first opinion practice, as a night vet and as a locum vet. She has also spent time working at a charity clinic in the Cook Islands which was a challenge but also immensely rewarding. She loves all aspects of veterinary work, but she especially enjoys medicine cases and diagnostic imaging. She is passionate about pain-management, particularly in her more senior patients. She currently works in a first opinion small animal practice in North Yorkshire where she deals with both routine and emergency cases.

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