After recent rains, toxic mushrooms pose threat to dogs

Posted at 11:54 AM, Sep 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-20 12:55:32-04

By Jamey Boyum

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - With the recent rains, fungi have taken up residence in East Texas and are posing a threat to our furry friends.

It’s a pretty well-known fact that dogs will eat just about anything, and unfortunately that sometimes includes mushrooms. Veterinarian Christine Prior at the Longview Animal Care and Adoption Center spoke about what to look for if your dog ingests an unknown fungus.

Fungi come in many varieties some of which are toxic. Prior says sometimes dogs will just chow down on any of them, including possibly the toxic ones.

“They’ll eat mushrooms, plants, all that kind of stuff. The worse it is for them the more likely they are to eat it,” Prior said.

And sometimes pet owners don’t know what kind it was.

“It can be really hard to identify the actual species, and so a lot of times we don’t make the, ‘hey they ate this particular kind of mushroom.’ It’s just ‘hey, they ate a mushroom’,” Prior pointed out.

Linda Gentry just adopted a dog, and has seen the mushrooms crop up.

“I have seen one... that my daughter kicked out of my back yard yesterday,” Gentry said. She said that the mushroom was about 5 inches. She’s never thought of what could happen if her dog got to them.

“I had never thought about it, but you know I never let my other dog outside unless I was with her,” Gentry said.

Prior shared signs of what to look for if that dog gets into toxic mushrooms.

“The ones that we see the most often are actually mushrooms that cause tremors and so the dogs will start twitching and have tremors or sometimes they’re kind of walking like they’re drunk,” Prior explained.

She says she’s seen it happen, often at night, and owners end up at a pet emergency clinic.

“They can progress to seizures, and of course the longer you’re having seizures they can actually get pretty bad,” Prior said.

So if smaller dog eats a lot it can end badly. However, Linda has a plan.

“I’ll make sure they’re all gone. My dog is my baby,” she said.

Prior also says some species of mushroom can eventually cause liver damage.

She advises keeping your dog well away from a patch of mushrooms and getting rid of any that are in a dog’s reach.

Copyright 2018 KLTV. All rights reserved.