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Button Battery Ingestion and Toxicity in Dogs and Cats
Veterinary & Aquatic Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith
First Aid, Emergencies, & Poisons
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Potassium hydroxide, sodium hydroxide, cadmium, lithium, mercuric oxide, and zinc.

Button-cell Battery

General Information
Ingestion of button-cell batteries can lead to esophageal erosions due to the release of potassium hydroxide or sodium hydroxide. Batteries in the stomach can cause gastric erosions and ulceration. These erosions may develop within 12 hours, with the area in contact with the battery suffering the greatest damage.

Toxic Dose

Lack of appetite, vomiting, abdominal pain, and drooling.

Immediate Action
Seek veterinary attention.

Veterinary Care
General treatment: The button-cell battery may be removed with an endoscope. This allows for an exam of the esophagus and stomach at the same time. Abdominal surgery may need to be performed if endoscopy is unsuccessful at retrieving the battery.

Supportive treatment: Secondary conditions such as erosions or ulcers are treated with medications and dietary changes. The pet is monitored for symptoms of mercury or heavy metal poisoning and treated if necessary.

Specific treatment: Unavailable

Good, if the button-cell battery is removed immediately.

Keep this and all other medications out of the reach of children and pets.

If you think your pet has been poisoned...

Contact your veterinarian or one of the Animal Poison Hotlines (listed below) if you think your pet may have accidentally received or been given an overdose of the medication.

**ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center - 24-hour service available throughout North America.

1-888-4ANI-HELP (1-888-426-4435). $65.00 per case, billed to caller's credit card.

Follow-up calls can be made for no additional charge by dialing 888-299-2973.

There is no charge when the call involves a product covered by the Animal Product Safety Service.

**Pet Poison Helpline - 24-hour service available throughout North America for pet owners and veterinary professionals who require assistance with treating a potentially poisoned pet.

1-800-213-6680 ($59.00 per incident). Staffed 24-hours a day.

Updated 6/20/17

Click here for a pdf version of this article.  See related products at Pet Supplies  
Print Article | Email Article