Ask the Edmonds Vet: Mushrooms that are poisonous to pets

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Amanita pantherina
Amanita pantherina

We received this comment Sunday from a reader, and passed it along to our Ask the Edmonds Vet columnist Dr. David Gross:

Michael Richardson notes: “Poisonous mushrooms are starting to come out. My pup ate one and was in a coma for about 8 hours. The species is Amanita Pantherina and now I’ve seen it in two areas in Edmonds. With Edmonds being so dog-friendly, I thought it might be applicable for news. They tend to be pretty big targets for dogs and cats because they give off kind of a fishy smell”

Dr. David Gross
Dr. David Gross

Dr. Gross responds: “This is not a common type of poisoning in cats or dogs but does happen. There are, apparently, two species of mushrooms that are problematic and although a lethargic, coma-like state is not uncommon after an animal ingests them it is rarely fatal. You might want to refer your readers to: http://www.namyco.org/mushroom_poisonings_in_dogs_an.php

“The preferred treatment seems to be inducing vomiting and using activated charcoal if the animal is seen eating a mushroom(s) then supportive fluid therapy if the animal shows signs of severe lethargy or coma.”

Dr. Gross suggests contacting your veterinarian and taking along a sample of the mushroom, if possible.

1 COMMENT

  1. The other mushroom that causes this type of poisoning is Amanita muscaria, bright red cap with white warts, by far the most pictured of any mushroom. The important thing in this type of poisoning in dogs is to keep them under close observation to be sure they do not aspirate vomit while in the coma-like state. That state lasts for several hours. There will be muscle spasms. Many dogs have been euthanized during this state due to the mistaken conception that the dog is suffering. Judging from human experience (some people eat them intentionally to experience the effects) the dog may be puzzled, but is not suffering and will recover in a few hours. Cats sometimes eat them, but far less often than dogs. They too will survive if kept under surveillance.

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