One side effect of the recent deluge of rain across Australia’s eastern seaboard, is a variety of multicoloured fungi popping up in suburban yards.

Key points:

  • Rain has seen mushrooms flourish, which can be harmful to dogs if consumed
  • Common side effects include vomiting and diarrhoea
  • Toxins in the home can also be harmful to dogs, including grapes, chocolate and foods made with an artificial sweetener, xylitol

They may be pretty, but they can also be toxic — especially to our four-legged friends.

Reports online are circulating of some dogs ending up in emergency after eating mushrooms. 

First signs of toxicity

Sunshine Coast vet Danielle Houston said the most common side effects she sees from dogs eating toxic mushrooms are gastrointestinal.

“They can just be as mild as a little bit of a vomit, right up to some really severe vomiting and diarrhoea,” Dr Houston said.

Medium-sized brown dog is held by a vet in blue medical clothing. Dog has vomited neon green onto a white pad.

Vomiting and diarrhoea is a sign a dog has eaten something toxic, though it can be hard for vets to diagnose.(

Supplied: Danielle Houston

)

Dr Houston said neurotoxicity could also occur.

“This is where your hallucinogenic mushrooms probably come in,” she said.

“So we can get abnormal behaviour, right up to nasty things like seizure.”

She said liver damage was another common consequence of many toxicities, “because our liver’s job is to essentially detoxify the body”.

Dr Houston has had one client vomit neon green after consuming snail poison in the garden — another garden toxicity.

Brown medium-sized dog looks weary with neon green vomit below him.

Dogs can fall ill from eating many things around the house and garden, including mushrooms and pesticides.(

Supplied: Danielle Houston

)

Toxicity can be hard to diagnose

Dr Houston said it could be hard to know if a pet’s issues were caused from eating toxic mushrooms.

“We can connect some of the dots, but just because it’s associated doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the cause.”

She said the human medicine industry had more detailed toxicology screening capabilities than that of animals.

So when it comes to veterinary science, Dr Houston focuses on what’s in front of her to make diagnosis, “and managing what we’re dealing with right now”.

“Because even if we make them vomit and bring up something that looks like a mushroom, it doesn’t necessarily mean that’s the problem,” she said.

“We are scientists and we don’t like not having an answer, and there’s so many instances where we just don’t get one.”

Brown medium-sized dog with wraps around both legs looks tired

Hurley consumed toxic snail bait from the garden in the Sunshine Coast.(

Supplied: Danielle Houston

)

More dangerous toxins in the home

There are many toxins in the home that are also very harmful for dogs, including artificial sweeteners, chocolate, certain plants and even grapes.

“The biggest one that we worry about inside of the house is xylitol,” Dr Houston says.

Xylitol can be found in gum, mouthwash and toothpaste, but also in some brands of peanut butter, ice cream, pre-mix cakes and some snack bars, among other foods.

“It causes a really, really awful impact on the liver. And it is absolutely life-threatening,” Dr Houston said.

“Grapes cause what we call an idiosyncratic reaction, which means there’s no toxic dose and there’s no safe dose.

“And I’m an emergency vet, so I’m terribly paranoid because I see where everything goes wrong.”

Pet owners warned of potential poison that has flourished in the rain
Source:
Source 1

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here