herbicide, defoliant, fertilizer, suicide
Toxicity to pets
Paraquat is a highly toxic herbicide used as an agriculture chemical. While it is rarely found in North America, it is commonly used in other countries. Unfortunately, it is often used in attempted suicides in Central America. When ingested, paraquat poisoning results in severe gastrointestinal distress, including vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, ulcers in the mouth and esophagus, etc. Once paraquat is absorbed into the system, it results in severe lung injury, causing death by hypoxemia (lack of oxygen). Death can occur quickly. Immediate therapy is necessary.
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.