Has your dog been sniffing wild mushrooms outdoors? Or are you wondering whether to add mushrooms to its diet?
There is not one straightforward answer to the question – can dogs eat mushrooms, though.
Like humans, some mushrooms can be eaten safely by dogs, while others can be toxic and even lethal to your four-legged companion.
This is why you should ask your veterinarian and perform your research before incorporating any mushroom or other human food into your dog’s diet.
When can dogs eat mushrooms safely?
If you want to add some mushrooms to your dog’s diet, you should stick to using store-bought mushrooms if you want to stay on the safe side.
But even if you are an experienced mushroom hunter, you should keep in mind that there are certain types of mushrooms and fungi that are safe for humans but not safe for canines as well.
Ordinary store-bought mushrooms are rich in healthy nutrients, such as vitamin B and potassium, so they can be a great addition to your pup’s food.
But you must be wary of using other types of mushrooms or mixing them with veggies like onions or garlic and other foods and spices, oils, or condiments that can be toxic for dogs.
When can mushrooms be unsafe or dangerous for dogs?
If you notice that your dog is sniffing on or munching on a wild mushroom while you are on a walk or hike, then you should contact your vet immediately, get the dog to an emergency veterinary hospital, or call the animal poison control center right away.
If possible, pick up the remaining part of the mushroom that your dog has ingested and place it in a paper bag to present it to the veterinarian or to animal poison control. The quicker the potentially poisonous mushroom is identified by the experts, the faster the most efficient measures can be taken.
The typical symptoms of toxicity from mushroom ingestion in dogs include:
- Neurological symptoms
- Yellow gums, eyes, and skin (jaundice)
- Disorientation or a staggering gait
- Abdominal pain
- Increased salivation
- Lethargy and weakness
If you suspect that your dog is suffering from mushroom poisoning, it is key to get the dog to a vet immediately and begin treatment as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more dangerous and potentially fatal the poisoning can be.
In the US and the North American continent as a whole, the most common causes of mushroom poisoning in dogs are due to the ingestion of Amanita phalloides (death cap), amanita gemmate (jeweled death cap), and amanita muscaria (deadly agaric) mushrooms. Other poisonous mushrooms for dogs include the Galerina marginata, the Gyromitra spp (false morsel), and the Inocybe spp and Clitocybe dealbata mushrooms.