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Dangers of Composting To Your Dog

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The EPA sings the praises of composting. It enriches the soil, helps prevent polution and reduces the need for water, fertilizers, and pesticides.  But did you know that it can also seriously hurt or kill your dog? There are significant dangers of composting to your dog, as revealed by ZooToo.

If you have pets, take care with compost piles or bins that contain any dairy products, grains, nuts, and legumes, because they can become moldy. Moldy foods potentially contain tremorgenic mycotoxins — poisons from molds that can cause neurological symptoms such as tremors and seizure that can last hours or days if not treated rapidly. Other symptoms include vomiting, hyperactivity, depression, coma, behavior alterations, increase in heart rate, and buildup of fluid in the lungs.

Due to their curious nature and relatively indiscriminate eating habits, dogs tend to be most commonly exposed to tremorgenic mycotoxins, because cats have a tendency to be a bit more discriminating about what they eat, explains New York’s Animal Medical Center Chief of Medicine, Richard E. Goldstein, DVM, DACVIM, DECVIM-CA.

“If you believe that your dog has scavenged from the compost, call your veterinarian and be prepared to rush him to the animal hospital immediately,” says Goldstein.

Dr. Goldstein doesn’t recommend that you try to induce vomiting at home, because the tremors and loss of muscle control could cause the dog to aspirate.

Besides avoiding composting certain foods, Goldstein recommends pet owners use tightly sealed containers for composting and collecting garbage as a preventive measure to safeguard pets.”  Read the original post here.

In addition to sharing the dangers of composting to your dog  ZooToo offers more tips to provide a safe, dog-friendly yard, including:

  • Fertilizer and pesticides can be hazardous to pet health.
  • Create a safe garden.
  • Eliminate risk by choosing mulch wisely.
  • Maintain fencing to keep your pet at home and intruders out.

Do you compost? If so, what’s your experience been with your dog and the compost? Have you had any problems? Or do you have additional tips to prevent dangers of composting to your dog? Please share them below.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Avatar Of Louise



    My son’s dog got loose last evening and got into the compost they had just emptied from the bin, to dig into their garden. Shortly after, the dog had convulsions, high fever and foaming at the mouth, among other alarming symptoms. They rushed her to a 24 hr. vet clinic and the vet said he sees it a lot, and some dogs die from the poisons in compost. There should be more publicity given to this danger to pets.

    They think their dog will pull through, but it has already cost them $2000.00 for the emergency treatment in the middle of the night. Needless to say, they are done with composting!

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