Mushrooms love the cooler Autumn weather and can appear suddenly after rainfall. Although commonly underestimated, mushroom intoxication ranks near the top of the list of pet poisonings every year.
Mushroom poisoning : the symptoms
Signs that your dog may have eaten a mushroom are vomiting and diarrhoea ( maybe with blood) which occurs within 6-12 hours of ingestion. These signs may go away, but unfortunately, your dog may not be in the clear. After about 48-72 hours following resolution of these signs, your dog will develop liver and kidney failure and the prognosis isn’t good at this point.
What are mushrooms?
Mushrooms are a type of fungus that can be found both indoors and outdoors. There are many different types of mushrooms, and toxicity varies between species. Some mushrooms contain toxins that can cause dogs to experience a wide range of symptoms, from mild gastrointestinal upset to seizures and death.
Are mushrooms safe for dogs to eat?
Some mushrooms contain toxins that can cause liver damage, kidney failure, or even death in dogs. If you think your dog may have eaten mushrooms, contact your veterinarian immediately.
If your pet spends time outside unsupervised, be sure to remove all wild mushrooms from the yard until you can confirm they’re safe. Even if your dog doesn’t eat any of the wild mushrooms, it’s still best to avoid them because there’s always a chance they could get sick from ingesting even a small amount.
What are the dangers of dogs eating mushrooms?
The dangers of dogs eating mushrooms are potentially serious. Dogs that eat mushrooms can experience liver damage, kidney damage, and even death. It is important to be able to identify mushrooms that are poisonous to dogs, and to keep your dog away from any mushrooms that you may find.
Cooking mushrooms can cause gastrointestinal upset in some dogs. It’s best to avoid feeding your dog cooked mushrooms because of the additional ingredients and seasonings that accompany them.
The most common, serious problems are the most easily avoidable by keeping your dog away from wild mushrooms.
Symptoms of mushroom poisoning vary depending on species and the toxins they contain. Some toxic mushroom species lead to drunken like movements, hallucinations, seizures , coma or death in dogs. Symptoms typically differ between different types of toxins contained in a given mushroom species.
If your dog eats mushrooms and you need help, call your vet.
How can I tell if my dog has eaten a mushroom?
Depending on the type of mushroom, symptoms could range from mild to deadly. If your dog has any of the following symptoms, call your veterinarian immediately:
- Tremors or seizures
- Strange behavior
- Labored breathing
- Loss of coordination
- Excessive drooling
Mushroom poisoning in dogs can be a serious issue, and it’s important to be able to identify the symptoms. If you see any of these signs, take your dog to the nearest clinic as soon as possible. It’s also helpful to bring the mushroom with you so that it can be identified and treated accordingly.
What should I do if my dog has eaten a mushroom?
If your dog has eaten a mushroom, it’s important to take action immediately. Mushroom toxicity can vary depending on the type of mushroom consumed, so it’s important to get your dog checked out by a vet as soon as possible. Symptoms of toxicity may include drooling, vomiting and diarrhoea. In some cases, mushrooms can also cause neurotoxicity which leads to drunken-like movements, hallucinations and seizures.
Poisonous wild mushrooms in the UK:
Mushrooms are a type of fungi, which is a living organism that reproduces by means of spores. There are many different types of mushrooms found in the wild and most are safe to eat.
However, some types of mushrooms can be poisonous and should not be consumed. These include the death cap, amanita phalloides, which contains a toxin known as alpha-amanitin that can cause death within minutes of ingestion.
Amanita Phalloides, Amanita Muscaria, Cortinarius Rubellus, Galerina Marginata, Clitocybe Rivulosa and Pleurocybella Porrigens are poisonous to both humans and dogs.
The best way to avoid these mushrooms is to stay away from areas where they are found and, if you come across them, to not touch or eat them.
The most important thing to remember is that dogs should not eat any mushroom.
Identifying deadly mushrooms:
Death Cap : It has a white cap and stem, and grows in areas with oak trees. It contains amatoxins which can damage your liver and kill you and your dog
Mica cap, shiny cap, and glistening inky cap: It has a brown or olive cap, and grows near dung or compost heaps. It contains psilocybin which can cause hallucinations.
There are a number of poisonous wild mushrooms in the UK, and it’s important to be aware of them. Some of these mushrooms look very similar to safe varieties that you might find in stores, so it’s always best to err on the side of caution.
So far, only 50 cases of mushroom poisoning in dogs have been reported this year–but that doesn’t mean that they’re not dangerous. In fact, wild mushrooms can be extremely harmful to dogs and can even lead to death. That’s why it’s important for pet owners to be aware of which mushrooms are poisonous and keep their dogs away from them.
Check your garden and remove any mushrooms or toadstools
For this reason, I recommend regularly checking your garden for mushroom growth, particularly after damp, rainy days and removing any mushrooms you find (use gloves). And keep your eyes on your dogs whilst out walking for potential mushroom munching.
Especially look out for the Death Cap mushroom which emits a fishy odour when it’s decaying which, for some reason is very appetising to dogs (and cats). Death Cap can be identified by its yellowish-green cap that grows large and flat as the mushroom ages, ingestion is fatal.