For months it has been nothing but heat and wild fires and now right along the east coast of Australia there is torrential rain with some areas flooded, and while most people have welcomed the deluge others are now cursing the rain that has caused untold damage to their homes. It’s a catch 22 situation, whether your house burns down or its gets washed away in the flood. For pet owners there is another problem. The danger of your dog tripping out – I kid you not. With the advent of rain and hot humid conditions magic mushrooms, indeed mushrooms on any kind are bursting forth and vets are warning they pose a major problem for our four legged companions.
Magic mushrooms are one of the most psychoactive, mind altering substances on the planet – a fact which your dog might find out the hard way.
The names alone should tell you how dangerous they are, although just by looking at them you may not be able to tell. The most common mushrooms to cause death in humans and dogs contain Amanita toxins and have names such as Death Cap and Destroying Angel. So as you tip toe through the tulips beware of the dangers that lurk beneath your dog’s feet.
Of course the hard part is keeping your eye on your dog. I know that even in the large dog park I take my companion each morning mushrooms grow and although thankfully he has shown no interest in them I always knock them down and ground them into the dirt just in case. I’m not willing to take a chance. Ironically I’m more concerned about snakes than mushrooms and their lies the rub.
There are thousands of mushrooms out there, but only about 100 types are poisonous. Dogs that eat mushrooms containing these toxins will show signs of vomiting, diarrhoea, drooling, and eventually liver damage .Often dogs do not develop poising symptoms until 6 to 24 hours after ingestion and there is often a period of time after the initial gastro intestinal signs have resolved where the dog seems to be doing better, however liver failure is developing, and may become irreversible if it isn’t treated.
So what do you do if your dog has ingested a mushroom and you think it is poison? First and foremost contact an on duty vet and get your dog on the way to the vet hospital without delay. Then induce vomiting. Your vet will probably ask you to try and get some charcoal into your dogs system and although this is not often on hand it is helpful in getting into the gastro intestinal tract and absorbs the poison. From there on in it is up to your vet and hope you have got it in time.
Just remember to look for the signs and if you see them don’t wait.