Season of mist and mellow fruitfulness…
As the evenings draw in and the mornings are misty and chilly it’s a good time to think about the potentially risky plants, fungi and fruit that your animal may be at risk from ingesting.
Pets, farm animals and horses often ingest fallen fruit and nuts/seeds with a variety of consequences.
Acorns are a particular problem in farm species as they may fall onto the pasture. Cattle and sheep can show signs of gastrointestinal upset and often black/tarry diarrhoea. Some horses get a real taste for acorns and if ingested in large quantities this may cause signs of dehydration and colic.
Conkers can cause abdominal obstruction in dogs and we have had a couple of dogs who have had surgery to remove conkers on multiple occasions! They don’t seem to learn their lesson.
Laurel berries can cause diarrhoea and vomiting in dogs. Sheep and goats will be very sick on ingestion of laurel or related plants and will show signs of severe abdominal pain and regurgitation.
Windfall fruit such as apples and plums may also cause gastrointestinal upset and if fermented can cause signs of alcohol poisoning.
This is also the time of year for fungi and mushrooms and sometimes dogs will eat them.
What to do
If you are at all concerned that your animal may be at risk of poisoning after the ingestion of a fungi or seed/fruit then please ring us for advice.
It is always helpful to either bring some of the plant/seed/fruit/fungi to us at the same time for identification.
We are affiliated to a national data base and advice centre called the Veterinary Poisons Information Service. They are on call 24 hours a day 365 days a year to help to advise us on the best course of action for your animal.