A couple years back our border collie got into some rodent bate a neighboring orchardist had left exposed. We nearly lost her! I’m Susan Allen and when Open Range returns I’ll tell you why rodenticides have become so deadly today, not just to dogs and cats but even livestock. If you have a rodent problem in your barn or horse facility, a barn cat is a far better option than new rodenticides that have become even more poisonous with the advent of new ingredients over the last few years. Anticoagulants such as brodifacoum, are more potent than older products like warfarin, meaning even tiny amounts can cause severe poisoning, couple that with the fact todays’ rodenticides are more enticing to pets and livestock due to new technology in flavoring and it’s one deadly combination. Rodent killers act to deplete blood clotting which leads to uncontrolled bleeding and death. Bleeding can occur anywhere in the body and may not be evident externally. Worse (as in the case of my dog, Cricket) the signs that something was terribly wrong, swelling of joints, depression, lameness, blood in urine usually start two to five days after she had eaten the poison making it hard to pinpoint what went wrong. Horses have been poisoned not only by gaining access to grain storage areas with mice killer but also when rodents have carried the flavored grain like poison into their nests in hay. Bottom line, think twice before using rodent bate not only is it deadly to our pets but also any wildlife and bird species that consume mice and rats. This time of year animal shelters are full of cats that would love to be mousers!