Summer is officially over for another year and autumn is here! Whilst we might be thankful for some more manageable temperatures, autumn brings with it some unique hazards for your pet. Find out what you can do to keep your pet safe this season!
Autumn is prime for mushrooms creeping up in your lawn. Many are harmless but some are toxic to pets and can result in serious health issues or even death. Unless you are a mushroom expert (or mycologist, as they’re formally known!), you should assume that all mushrooms are toxic and treat them accordingly. Check your lawn for unwelcome funghi and remove any you find. Also, keep your pooch leashed in areas where mushrooms are likely to grow.
Symptoms of mushroom poisoning can appear anywhere from 2 – 24 hours after consumption and may start with vomiting & diarrhoea. If you suspect your pet has eaten a mushroom, consult your vet immediately.
As the temperatures begin to drop, some mammals and reptiles begin hibernation or periods of ‘torpor’, every day energy-saving measures to conserve heat. An estimated 43% of Australian native animals are believed to enter torpor and can pose an extra danger to your family pet as some show extra levels of aggression during these vulnerable period. Snakes in particular can become territorial and more likely to strike to make sure you’re aware of what you can do to prevent/treat a bite if necessary. Similarly, many species of bee and wasp reach the end of their life cycle in Autumn and can become uncharacteristically aggressive and likely to sting. Check out what to do if your pet is stung here!
It’s not us humans who feel the cold this time of year! Mice and rats are more likely to make their way into your home during the cooler Autumn months and so the likelihood of mouse/rat poison in your home increases too. Unfortunately, these poisons often smell very enticing to dogs and cats but can cause devastating damage to their internal organs. Even eating a rat or mouse that has ingested poison can cause fatal injuries to your pet so it is incredibly important to take necessary steps to protect your furry friend.
If possible, do not use poison in or around your home. If absolutely necessary, make sure poisons are placed well out of reach of any pets. As always, if you suspect your pet has ingested rodent poison, don’t wait – contact your vet immediately.