Lead

Lead

metals

Alternate names

paint, batteries, heavy metals, shot, fishing sinkers, sinkers, leaded glass, ceramic, pottery, plumbing, solder, linoleum, buckshot, bullets, EDTA

Toxicity to pets

Lead poisoning is less commonly seen nowadays, thanks to government regulation on the use of lead-based paint in the home. However, certain common household items still contain lead, including old drapery weights, car batteries, lead shot, children’s toys, lead sinkers, solder, etc. When ingested, the acid within the gastrointestinal tract results in rapid absorption of the lead into the bloodstream. With poisoning, signs affecting the gastrointestinal tract (e.g., vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, anorexia, etc.) and central nervous system (e.g., walking drunk, regurgitating, seizuring, acting blind, etc.) can occur. Treatment to bind the lead out of the body (e.g., succimer or calcium EDTA) may be necessary.

Currently, birds are the most common animal affected by lead poisoning. This may be due to being shot (with lead shot) or ingesting lead sinkers.

Help minimize exposure to pets and wildlife by keeping lead out of the environment!

Lead

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Disclaimer

The content of this page is not veterinary advice. A number of factors (amount of substance ingested, size of the animal, allergies, etc.) determine what is toxic to a particular pet. If you think your pet has eaten something potentially toxic, call Pet Poison Helpline or seek immediate veterinary treatment.