Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs - Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment, Recovery, Management, Cost

Most common symptoms

Anemia / Collapse / Drowsiness / Lethargy / Vomiting / Weakness

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Rated as serious conditon

3 Veterinary Answers

Most common symptoms

Anemia / Collapse / Drowsiness / Lethargy / Vomiting / Weakness

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Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs - Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment, Recovery, Management, Cost

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What is Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?

Carbon monoxide poisoning in dogs occurs when the odorless gas is inhaled and absorbed into the bloodstream. Gas or smoke that leaks from engines, fireplaces, and kerosene or propane equipment builds up quickly in low-ventilated areas like garages and covered patios. Carbon monoxide binds to hemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying component of red blood cells, and prevents the blood from carrying oxygen to the brain and heart. Low oxygen levels can quickly result in coma or death. Carbon monoxide (CO) is a poisonous gas that is produced from fires, car exhaust, and outdoor generators. Carbon monoxide is toxic to all species. When inhaled in high enough concentrations CO causes oxygen starvation (e.g., hypoxia) to the cells of the body.

Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can include one or more of the following:

  • Drowsiness
  • Weakness
  • Red lips, ears, and gums
  • Incoordination
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Exercise intolerance
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Collapse

Causes of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs

Sources of dangerous levels of carbon monoxide gas can include:

  • Automobile exhaust
  • Barbecue grills
  • Gas fireplaces
  • Gas water heaters
  • Kerosene lanterns
  • Kerosene space heaters
  • Ovens
  • Propane heaters
  • Furnaces
  • Burning buildings
  • Airplane cargo space

Any slow gas leak or smoke in areas of poor ventilation (rooms without open windows or vents and moving air) can expose pets and people to dangerous levels of carbon monoxide.

Diagnosis of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs

Diagnosis is based on symptoms and possibility of exposure to carbon monoxide. Your veterinarian will want to know where the pet was throughout the day, whether carbon monoxide sources were nearby, and whether other pets or family members are experiencing similar symptoms. Pets having difficulty breathing or collapsed pets will be offered oxygen and supportive therapy immediately, prior to diagnosis.

Blood analysis can determine increased creatinine kinase levels and low blood pH (acidosis), both seen with carbon monoxide poisoning. Carboxyhemoglobin levels in the blood will be elevated.

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Treatment of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs

If you suspect your pet has been exposed to carbon monoxide gas, move him to an open space with fresh air immediately. If your pet has no observable pulse or heartbeat or has collapsed and you are properly trained, perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). It is important to transport your pet to the vet as soon as possible for supportive care.

The goal of treatment for carbon monoxide poisoning is to re-oxygenate the blood as quickly as possible.

Oxygen therapy

Your veterinarian will begin oxygen therapy immediately using a breathing mask or oxygen chamber. Oxygen levels may be monitored using a pulse oximeter.

Intravenous fluids

Oxygen deprivation causes the blood to become acidic. Intravenous fluid therapy can aid in bringing the blood pH back to normal.

Respiratory support

A ventilator may be required to bring a pet to a stable condition over a longer period of time.

Depending on the severity of carbon monoxide poisoning, your pet may need to be hospitalized until symptoms reside and blood oxygen levels are normalized. In mild cases that are treated early, the pet should recover fully. In cases of chronic exposure to carbon monoxide gas, or in cases of severe poisoning, the pet may not be able to be stabilized or harbor long-term side effect to the brain.

Recovery of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs

Follow up appointments may be necessary to determine complete recovery from carbon monoxide poisoning. After your pet arrives home, physical activity should be limited for 3-4 weeks. Rest and proper diet and water are good for healing.

Check all equipment for gas leaks and install carbon monoxide monitors to ensure the problem has been taken care of. Carbon monoxide gas has no color, no odor and is not irritating. Without a carbon monoxide monitor, there is no way of knowing it is present until symptoms of sickness arise.

Keep all equipment that uses gas, kerosene or propane well maintained. Be sure there are no cracks in hoses. When performing maintenance, do so in a well ventilated area, preferably outdoors and/or with fans to disperse any gas fumes.

Never to leave a pet in an enclosed space without some form of ventilation and airflow.

Cost of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Dogs

Once at the animal hospital, the veterinarian can begin oxygen therapy and monitoring the dog’s pulse and other vital signs. Oxygen therapy can cost $120 to $210 per treatment. When the blood has been stripped of oxygen, the blood becomes acidic and therefore needs to be regulated. Intravenous fluids would be administered and usually cost $40 to $80. The veterinarian may also see the need to put the dog on respiratory support (or a ventilator) if he is having trouble breathing. Your dog will need to be hospitalized until the blood and other vitals return to normal. This can cost $40 to $130 per day.

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Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Average Cost

From 57 quotes ranging from $300 - $5,000

Average Cost

$500

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

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Leah

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German Shepherd

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3 Months

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Serious condition

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0 found helpful

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Serious condition

Has Symptoms

My dog is 3 months, she's a german shepherd. I saw her licking a puddle off the parking lot and i quicking grabbed her and got her away from that.It was gasoline from a car that she licked. Now she can't week walk, she's weak, eyes closed, and not really moving. I don't know what to do?

Aug. 21, 2018

Leah's Owner

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3320 Recommendations

Any product ingested from a petroleum distillate requires immediate attention from your Veterinarian for care; puddles of ‘stuff’ in car parks may be petrol, diesel, oil, brake fluid, antifreeze among other nasty things. You should visit your Veterinarian immediately. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM https://wagwalking.com/condition/petroleum-distallates-poisoning www.petpoisonhelpline.com/poison/petroleum-distillates/ www.msdvetmanual.com/toxicology/petroleum-product-poisoning/overview-of-petroleum-product-poisoning

Aug. 21, 2018

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Makoa

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Pit bull

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2 Years

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Moderate condition

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0 found helpful

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Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Catatonic, Spasms

Last fall we all (fiance, myself, 3 dogs) were exposed to carbon monoxide poisoning. I managed to call 911. Responders said dogs seemed ok. But ever since I noticed my dog and the one who woke me repeatedly until I called for help, has been having more spasms when sleeping and at times when I try to wake her she seems out of it (blankly stares doesn't move) and sometimes grawls in her sleep. Could these be caused by the exposure?

June 5, 2018

Makoa's Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1611 Recommendations

It is very unlikely that the signs that she is showing now are related to the exposure last fall, as carbon monoxide poisoning passes as the gasses are replaced. She may be dreaming or reliving the incident.

June 5, 2018

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Star

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pit mix

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7 Months

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Serious condition

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0 found helpful

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Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Vomiting
Diarrhea, Lethargy
Weakness

If a dog has carbon monoxide poisoning will the have pure blood stools? She is also vomiting she was good 2 days ago and she wont eat or drink wight loss is substantial for her only beings sick for two days

July 26, 2017

Star's Owner

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recommendation-ribbon

3320 Recommendations

Blood in the stool isn’t a known symptom of carbon monoxide poisoning; affected dogs usually suffer from neurological symptoms (seizures, coma, depression), breathing difficulties and sudden death. Bloody diarrhoea may be indicative of a viral infection (Parvo if not vaccinated), parasites, tumours (too young for tumours) or a number of other poisoning agents. It is important to get Star to see her Veterinarian immediately since if this is Parvo, aggressive treatment is needed immediately. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

July 26, 2017

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Cersei

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American Staffordshire Terrier

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3 Years

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Serious condition

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0 found helpful

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Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Lethargy

After the gas was accidentally left on the stove all day in my basement apartment, my 78 lb AmStaff dog seemed lethargic and difficult to get out of the bed. After walking outside for 15-20 minutes, she seemed her normal energetic self. Should I take her to the vet? or should she be ok. The apartment was aired out prior to returning and the air quality is good now. Just wondering should I be concerned?

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Blue

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Cocker Spaniel

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5 Years

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Moderate condition

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0 found helpful

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Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Diarrhea
Gagging

Hi, I'm not sure what's up with my dog (a 5 year old healthy Cocker spaniel). He's been having heavy diarrhea and threated to vomit. The carbon monoxide alarm went off yesterday for about 5 minutes but went off again so I'm slightly worried. Any advice?

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Benji

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Pomeranian

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2 Years

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Fair condition

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0 found helpful

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Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Diarrhea
Vomiting

My gas was left on my stove for almost an entire day with my poor dog in the house. I didnt know until I checked on my dog camera and heard the carbon monoxide detector going off. I rushed home got my dog out of the house and opened all of the windows. Everything was cleared by the gas company and it was just the stove issue. I called the vet and position control, both of which were not helpful. They said if he is acting fine then he should be okay and my vet said they have never dealt with that situation before. He has been acting okay, has been perky and not lethargic, running around like his normal self. But two days after he had diarrhea all day. Now four days after he has been throwing up and diarrhea again. I am concerned are these symptoms because of the gas he was inhaling? He is a small dog only 5 lbs but most of the gas rose to the second floor and he was on the first floor. I am just not sure what to do and if I should be concerned. My vet was little help so do I take him to another vet?

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Max and rose

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Mixes

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2 Days

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Serious condition

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0 found helpful

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Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Lathargy

Three days ago I woke to find my bird dead in his cage. He was perfectly fine rhe night before. My children has a snow day, but I had to work. I didnt really think anything of the birds passing at the time. But, as the day went on it bugged me. Phoenix was a young bird and he was healthy. Thankfully the snow got worse so I got sent home early. We all wound up with carbon monoxide poisoning. My 3 children, my 2 dogs, 4 cats and myself. If it wouldnt have been for my bird passing and me telling my fire chief what happened we would have all died. I miss my bird, but he gave his life to save ours.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Average Cost

From 57 quotes ranging from $300 - $5,000

Average Cost

$500

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