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Rat Poison (Cholecalciferol) Toxicity in Horses



Treatment for poisoning by cholialciferol will vary on a case-by-case basis, depending upon the amount of poison ingested and on the severity of the symptoms.


The most common approach to treatment usually has to do with restricting the amount of vitamin D being taken in through food and supplements. A calcium chelator may be given, as this will reduce intestinal absorption of calcium. Treatment should also be started for kidney failure. This is usually supportive care and requires administration of large amounts of IV fluids.


Living and Management


Recovery from this toxicosis can be lengthy and often unrewarding, as calcification of tissues and renal failure cannot be reversed. The prognosis is guarded and euthanasia is often elected.




Although accidental ingestion cannot be prevented, occasionally this type of toxicosis occurs through the mismanagement of vitamin supplements. Before starting your horse on any supplementation, discuss it with your veterinarian.