Mushrooms and Acorns

Autumn Hazards for Your Dogs

Autumn ushers in crisp air, eye-popping colors, and comforting aromas, such as pumpkin spice. But it also brings with it some hazards for our dogs.

Piles of leaves left without being removed become old and damp and can pose a significant threat to our dogs. The dark, moist conditions found in these piles become a vast breeding ground for inherently harmful micro-organisms. If eaten, they can cause gastro problems, which might lead to vomiting and diarrhea. It would be most advantageous for you to clear away old piles of leaves and when out on his walks, once again, discourage eating anything from leaf piles.

Leaves aren’t the only things falling from the trees. Things like acorns, buckeyes, horse chestnuts, and pinecones, to name a few. It all depends on where you live. Discourage your dog from picking up and eating them because they not only present a choking hazard and are extremely harmful to dogs, but they also contain very toxic chemicals that can result in serious illness.  Make sure you have some treats in your pocket to dissuade his acorn hunt. Also, if you know of an area with a particularly large amount of these, just avoid walking in these areas during Autumn. If you think your dog has ingested an acorn or anything else, get in touch immediately with your vet.

The blooms of summer have quietly disappeared from our gardens, making way for the flowers of fall. Autumn crocus, clematis, and mums, although lovely to look at and fragrant to smell, have leaves and stems that are toxic to your pups. They present an array of signs from skin irritations, diarrhea, and more severe illness. Be aware of what your dog might be exploring while out and about.

Autumn is also the time for mushrooms to begin to appear in your gardens and green spaces. Unless you are an authority on all things mushroom, I highly suggest you steer your dog clear of them all.

As summer yields to Autumn, so does daylight yield to earlier darkness. For early morning or late evening walks, you’ll be venturing out into dim light conditions or, in some cases, total darkness. Be prepared before you leave home. Besides the obvious flashlight and flashing dog collar, there are many things now on the market to ensure you and your dog have a safe and enjoyable walk.

Don’t forget to spray your dog and yourself with tick repellent. We often think of ticks as being a spring and summer parasite, however, they can be just as active in Autumn. When the outside elements are turning hostile, the warmth of your home and your dog are an attractive option for these pests. Keep up with your flea and tick regimen throughout the year just to be safe.

Have a safe and enjoyable Autumn with your furry friend.  It’s a terrific time of year!


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