Common signs of antifreeze poisoning in dogs include drunken behavior with uncoordinated movement and weakness, according to petMD. The dog may experience vomiting or diarrhea, excessive urination and accelerated heartbeat. A veterinarian does a blood profile and urinalysis. Bringing a sample of vomit and stool from the pet speeds the vet's diagnosis.
A dog owner who suspects his pet has consumed antifreeze should take the pet to the veterinarian immediately, according to the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Five tablespoons is enough to kill a medium-sized dog. Cats are able to lick enough antifreeze off their paws after walking through a puddle to cause death. Often pets that consume antifreeze seem to get better after a few hours. Unfortunately, within a couple of days, their condition deteriorates as kidney failure begins.
Early treatment is essential to the survival of the dog, according to WSU. Vets induce vomiting to remove any remaining antifreeze from the stomach. They use activated charcoal to bind antifreeze that has passed into the intestines. They give a shot that stops the liver from converting antifreeze into more toxic chemicals that cause additional damage. This allows the antifreeze to pass through the kidneys without causing damage. Most pets that come to the vet after kidney failure starts do not survive the toxin.