We all love to go hiking with our pups and allow them to roam free but there are hidden dangers in some parts of the country. Dr. Kim Bercovitz, D.V.M. of Companion Animal Hospital in Castro Valley California explains to us why you should be careful with your pets around foxtails. Foxtail plants can be risky for your dog. The barbed seed heads of the foxtail plant can work their way into any part of your dog or cat, from the nose to between the toes and inside the ears, eyes, and mouth. They can even simply dig themselves directly into a patch of skin.
One way you can protect your pet is by putting dog booties on them.
The foxtail plant is a grass-like weed. It is mostly found in the Western half of the U.S.
The danger of foxtails goes beyond simple irritation. Because these tough seeds don't break down inside the body, an embedded foxtail can lead to serious infection for your dog. It can even lead to death if left untreated. The seeds can be hard to find in your dog's fur.
0:04 - Foxtails are on of the weeds
0:05 - that we have that are very common
0:07 - When they’re green
0:08 - they don’t look like much
0:10 - and we don’t have much problems with them
0:12 - When they get gold
0:13 - they look like the hills
0:15 - are gold and waving in the wind
0:16 - and they are beautiful
0:18 - The problem is that they come apart
0:20 - into these little arrowhead
0:21 - like projections
0:22 - they get into
0:24 - our pets
0:25 - in a lot of different ways
0:26 - I’ve taken them out of the eyes
0:27 - and then you’ll see a cat or dog
0:30 - squinting
0:31 - I’ve taken them out of the ears
0:32 - then I usually see a head tilt
0:34 - shaking in their head, pawing, their ears
0:36 - I also see them in their pads
0:39 - It can actually move
0:40 - its way up their legs
0:42 - causing problems along the way
0:45 - causing infection and redness, swellings
0:47 - So we would like it if everyone
0:50 - could check their dogs
0:51 - when they got home from walks
0:54 - to make sure we don’t see any of these
0:55 - little guys hanging around.