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Dog ate mushrooms in the yard, what do we do, HELP please!

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Dog ate mushrooms in the yard, what do we do, HELP please!
  • Last night I caught my dog eating mushrooms in the backyard. I had never seen them before but we had been out of town (the dogs were with us) and when we returned I guess they had popped up while we were gone and she found them the first time she went out since we had gotten home. I quickly searched the yard and found at least 4 different looking mushroom types all over our yard near the spot where an Elm tree was taken out just about 1 year ago because it had Dutch Elm. (we're in MN and we've had a lot of rain lately. I'm assuming this along with us being gone for awhile and the grass getting longer was just the right environment to grow the dang mushrooms.)

    Anyways, I wasn't taking any chances, it looked like she had been munching on several. We went to the ER vet (our regular vet was closed already) and they induced vomiting, and gave activated charcoal. This morning she seems to be herself, acting normally, etc... Nothing unusual, so I *think* we're safe, BUT:

    1) no one seems to know how to get rid of the mushrooms so this doesn't happen again. (talked with several people working at the vet's office, they had no idea, and I've been searching the internet with no luck - it seems that the mushrooms will be there as long as the rotting roots are still underground. This was a huge tree, so I don't think digging it all up is even feasible or an option)

    2) we don't really know if what happened last night is over for sure and we're in the clear in terms of her health, or can there be effects later on...

    3) there are so many different kinds of mushrooms, can we even get them identified properly to know if there is a threat, or what level of danger they are? (We have a large fenced in yard and the dogs ususally spend about 1/3 of the day, weather permitting, outside - maye not anymore! :( The mushrooms (right now) seem to be all over about half the yard! UGH! From what I've learned in the past day or so, only 1% of all mushrooms are safe/edible and some can kill a person with one bite. So I'm very worried!

    Please help, has anyone else experienced this or do you have any ideas/suggestions/advice? Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!
  • been there done that.... In most cases, the treatment received will address everything.  Most times, the toxins are metabolized relatively quickly (typical digestion rates).  The only impact I ever had with Reggie the incredible eating machine was an elevated heart rate for 48 hours.
    As to getting rid of them, I did mushroom patrol every time the dogs went out.  If necessary, I would have them in the house or on line until I have the yard picked up.  The spores for reproduction are very light and travel large distances...I did notice that if I kept after the mushrooms over the course of a year or so the overall total did decrease (just got the blown in stuff verses the crop that developed when spores are released)
  • So you just picked all the mushrooms? Do you need to get down into the dirt, or just snap off what you can see? I'm wondering if mowing will chop them up and spread them as well... I hope not, but I definitely do not want to do something to make it worse.
  • I picked as much of the mushroom as possible, put my fingers at ground level and attempted to "pull" it out of the ground.  Mulched, chopped mushrooms might still have viable spores
  • The worlds largest living organism is actually a mushroom.   The roots travel far and wide.  Taking the visible portion off will stop them from reproducing from spores, but you'll never be able to get rid of them completely.   I do "mushroom patrol" also
  • We have also had a lot of rain.  However, I have been picking them up regularly along with the dog doo doo, because that can harbor other things we don't want or need!  After this past rain, no mushrooms..  Mushrooms like shade, moisture and I think acidic soil is best.  So, perhaps along with picking up, spreading small amount of lime would be good?  I don't know if that would be a good idea with the dogs though.  Maybe someone else knows.  I have not done it as I haven't needed to do anything else but pick em up! 
     I do have hay splayed out all over due to the grass getting beaten up by the dogs and making the dog yard a mud hole, and now I have hay growing, which the dogs also love to roll around in.  Maybe that too has helped to rid the yard of mushroom problems.
    Good luck, it is worth the effort to get rid of mushrooms.
  • Most mushrooms are not poisonous, and most of the poisonous ones will cause vomitting, diarrhea, and, in some cases profuse salivating and lowered heart rate but don't do permanent damage. Something like 95 % of mushroom fatalities in humans are caused by either Amanita pantherina or Amanita virosa. Google images of those two to see if they look like what your dog ate. Two features to look for to identify them are white gills on the underside, a "ring" around the stalk, and a cup-like structure at the base of the the stem. Lots of harmless mushrooms have one or two of these features, but not all three. These two mushrooms are particularly dangerous because they contain a liver toxin. If the stomach is emptied before the mushrooms pass through the stomach, they won't cause much harm, but if they are digested the toxin enters the blood stream and symptoms begin to show up in about two days in humans (I have no idea how long in dogs).

    There are other toxic mushrooms, and some can be serious if eaten in large enough quantities. If a dog eats a mushroom, if at all possible try to pick a few other specimens. If there is a local college or university there may be a botanist who can help with identification. If you are really concerned and there isn't a local expert, take some good digital photos that include shots of the top, the underside of the cap, and the stalk. Also take note of what the mushroom was growing in (mulch, lawn, under trees). Your vet may be able to e-mail the photos to a plant pathology or botany department at the nearest aggie school, and might be able to get a id that way.

    As far as getting rid of them, picking the caps diligently will remove the part your dog is likely to eat, but the bulk of the mushroom is fine filaments that permeate the soil. The fruiting bodies will return when conditions are again favorable. Most mushrooms have a pretty short fruiting season though, so you may only have to pick them for a week or two.
  • You can likely treat the area where the tree was -- I didn't pay as close attention as I should last year when our live oak was taken down and mulched up, but I was told NOT to plant a garden there because of the ... I **think** it was nitrogen in the soil from the mulch/roots from the tree.  We simply put sod over the top of it.  But now we get mushrooms in another area too. 

  • ORIGINAL: calliecritturs

    You can likely treat the area where the tree was --

    Actually, probably not. I mean, it's theoretically possible to come up with some treatments, but they mostly involve serious excavation (think backhoe, if not bulldozer) or creating a mini-SuperFund site. Often you'll get a flush of fruiting bodies when a tree has been removed because of various nutrients being released from the decaying roots. But the good news is that after a year or two the the sudden release of nutrients will abate and the proliferation of fungal fruiting bodies ends. In fact, my friends in the mid-west tell me that one of the best ways to hunt the delicious and delectable morel there is to look for dying elms. So, wouldn't it be ironic if it turned out that the OP's dog had actually alerted her to the presence of a gourmet delight that sells for about $30/lb and was treated to gastric lavage for his troubles?