Sharon Gwaltney-Brant, DVM, PhD, DABVT, DABT
Close attention to detail in evaluation of history and clinical findings, accurate and appropriate sample collection, maintenance of chain of custody of evidence and judicious use of analytical testing are imperative when investigating suspected intentional animal poisonings.
Permethrin, a synthetic type I pyrethroid, is found in many flea and tick shampoos, dips, foggers, spot-ons, and sprays as well as many household and yard insecticide formulations. While permethrins have a relatively wide margin of safety in dogs, cats appear to be more sensitive to the toxicity of some concentrated pyrethroids, particularly permethrin.
Baits may come in the form of gels injected with a preloaded syringe or incorporated into a plastic housing. The bait may be mixed with food stuffs such as peanut butter, jelly, and bread crumbs to attract the insects. Most of the insecticides used in these products are of low mammalian toxicity; exposure to these insecticides cause little more than gagging or vomiting.
Aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid, ASA) is available as tablets, capsules, powders, effervescent tablets and oral liquid preparations. Aspirin reduces pain and inflammation by reducing prostaglandin and thromboxane synthesis through inhibition of cyclooxygenase. At very high dosages, aspirin and other salicylates uncouple oxidative phosphorylation, leading to decreased ATP production.
Internet rumors are probably the most modern form of folklore (handed-down beliefs, stories, and customs), following on the heels of faxlore, xeroxlore, chain letters, and campfire stories.
Veterinarians that care for service dogs such as police, military, and search and rescue dogs are entrusted in maintaining the health of animals that provide a vital service to man, especially during times of crisis such as the terrorist events of 2001, when the searching abilities of the these dogs were of paramount importance.