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Dogs usually go about their walks and garden visits just chasing sticks and having a good run about. Below we’ll let you know some of the common dangers your dog might face while going for walkies!
Some dogs love eating acorns, but they really shouldn’t. In one off events, your dog might get an upset tummy or be sick, there might even be blood in it. If your dog keeps eating acorns, they could run into serious trouble with their kidneys and liver.
Fun for the school playground game, but not fun for your dogs. Your dog eating conkers can result in them being sick, dribbling and not feeling very hungry when usually they would be. Conkers are also pretty big, so if your dog swallows one whole, it could cause choking.
It is not possible for us to tell you which mushrooms are safe for your dog while your out on a walk? Why? Because it turns out different mushrooms and toadstools can look really similar but can be totally different in the effect they have when eaten. You basically need to be a professional mycologist (fancy word for someone who studies mushrooms) to be sure of what is safe and what is not.
If you dog does eat an unknown mushroom while you are out on a walk take them to the vets immediately and if possible, bring along a sample of the fungi in a paper bag, or carefully wrapped in paper (do not wrap or place in a plastic bag). Take note of the area where the fungi was found (i.e. was it growing in grass or on a tree stump etc.) – take a picture on your smartphone too - as this may help experts identify what fungi your dog has eaten should they become ill.
Keep an eye out for spring bulbs during the autumn when they are planted, or in spring when they begin to flower. Dogs might try and dig them up and eat them.
Effects from poisoning can include vomiting and an upset stomach. Dog can also appear sleepy, wobbly on their legs, or collapsing. Dogs can also become unwell if the flowers are eaten, or if water from a vase containing daffodils is drunk.
Eating tulip bulbs might cause some upset stomachs and being sick.
Slugs are not poisonous to dogs, but can often have something living inside them called Lungworm. Lungworm is a parasite (something nasty that lives off another living thing) that can be really dangerous to dogs. Make sure your dog doesn’t eat any slugs or snails while in the garden or out for walks. You can buy wormer that can protect your dogs from Lungworm. Talk to your vet about which wormer they would recommend for you.
Toads have a sneaky defensive weapon where glands found on their skin can release a toxin that can be poisonous to pets that bite them, pick them up in their mouth or lick them. Toads like to be out during the warmer months and may be more easily found by your dog after rain or during the early morning or early evening. The toad’s toxin can cause irritation in the mouth, leading to apparent pain, salivation and pawing at the mouth. If it gets worse, it can make the dog feel one of the following things: wobbly on its legs, appear lost or worried, increased breathing, heart rate changes and fits.
Toads also commonly eat slugs and snails and therefore could also be a source of lungworm for dogs.
In some of the UK’s wooded areas and fields live snakes. They usually are not aggressive and would only bite your dog if it treads on them or your dog shows too much interest in the adder and they bite to shoo the dog away. Adders are not poisonous, but they are venomous. The difference is how the toxin get into the dog. If a dog eats a toxin, that’s called a poison (that’s why the toad is poisonous), but if an animal puts the toxin in your dog by force like fangs or stings, that’s called a venom (Adders and bees/wasps are venomous). Adders venom is not too serious in humans. In dogs, however, it can be quite bad. You should take your dog to see a vet immediately. If you can, you should carry your dog rather than let it walk. Keep calm though as you don’t want your dog to be anxious. Call your vet in advance so they can get things prepared before you arrive.