If your pup likes to chase them, you might wonder, “can dogs eat frogs?”. Read this guide before you let them eat frogs or toads.
If the image of dogs and frogs makes you worried about your furry friend, you’re not alone! Depending on the type of frog or species of toad your dog eats, it could be very bad news. Read this guide to learn about the amount of toxin and the long-term effects of dogs eating toads.
For ultimate pet safety, I recommend consulting with your vet about all the questions you have about your dog eating frogs or toads.
- What Is The Difference Between Frogs and Toads
- Can Dogs Eat Frogs
- Can Dogs Eat Frog Legs
- Are Frogs Toxic To Dogs
- Types Of Frogs and Dogs
- Are Frogs Bad For Dogs
- My Dog Ate A Frog
- How To Stop Your Dog From Eating Frogs
- Dogs And Toads
- Are Toads Poisonous To Dogs
- Dog Ate Toad
- Final Thoughts
- More Dog Food Resources
What Is The Difference Between Frogs and Toads
Before we talk about dogs and frogs, it’s important to understand that frogs and toads are different. The biggest difference between them is how they look. Toads have lots of bumps on their skin, while frogs have smooth skin.
Toads also often look like they have dry skin, while frogs have moist, wet skin.
There are both frogs and toads in North America and, specifically, the United States. Toads are usually bigger than frogs too.
When it comes to danger, there are more poisonous toads in North America than poisonous frogs.
Keep reading this guide to learn about toxic toads and when to call the emergency vet if your dog eats one.
Can Dogs Eat Frogs
There are two basic types of frogs out there – the ones that are bad for dogs and the ones that aren’t. It’s pretty safe for dogs to eat frogs that have muted colors. Dogs should definitely not eat poisonous frogs (ones that are brightly colored).
While the color of the frog isn’t always a perfect indicator, it can help you make a quick decision.
Most frogs in the United States are non-toxic and safe for dogs to eat (although it might upset their stomach). It’s the toads that are more dangerous.
This guide will look closer at the symptoms of toad poisoning and what to do if your dog gets severe poisoning from frogs or toads.
Why Do Dogs Eat Frogs
Dogs are hunters, so it’s only natural for them to want to chase after smaller critters and eat them. Your fur baby probably won’t be able to tell the difference between safe and dangerous frog species. That’s why you need to pay close attention to them.
Can Dogs Eat Frog Legs
Even though edible frog legs are nontoxic, the short answer is that dogs should not eat fried food made for humans. It has too much fat and salt on it to be safe for them to eat.
Dogs that eat too much salt are at risk for salt poisoning. And dogs that eat too much fat and fried foods could get obese and be at risk for getting heart disease.
Are Frogs Toxic To Dogs
Yes, there are poisonous frogs that are toxic to dogs and your dog should not eat them, lick them, or be around them.
The good news is that unless your pet is in Central or South America, they probably won’t come in contact with a poisonous frog. The poison dart frog (or poison arrow frogs) is native to South America and rainforests.
It’s more likely that your dog will be around toxic toads, not frogs.
Types Of Frogs and Dogs
The species of frog that your dog will find in North America will probably be safe for them to be around. Let’s look closer at each kind of frog and how safe they are for dogs.
Most types of garden frogs are safe for dogs to eat. Your dog might get an upset stomach, especially if they aren’t used to eating raw meat. But otherwise, they will probably be ok.
Bullfrogs are not toxic to dogs. Since they are pretty big, it might make a bit of a mess, but it’s safe for them to eat.
The small brown frogs that come out after it rains are safe for dogs to eat. They might get a stomach ache, but they’ll probably be ok.
Watch out for bright green tree frogs. They are poisonous to dogs. They release toxins in their skin (this is a natural defense mechanism against predators).
If your dog eats a tree frog, contact your local vet.
To be extra safe, it’s best to keep your dog away from bright green frogs or any other exotic pet, since they could be dangerous.
Are Frogs Bad For Dogs
Generally, most frogs are ok for dogs to chase and play with. But you should always keep a close eye on your dog and make sure they don’t come in contact with a bright-colored poisonous one.
My Dog Ate A Frog
If you see your dog eating a frog, you might be understandably worried. Most frogs are non-toxic, and your dog will probably only experience minor symptoms.
Even so, get them away from the frog and watch for the following symptoms:
- Trouble Breathing
If you notice these (or any other) reactions, take them to the veterinarian. The vet will look for clinical signs of poisoning.
But what if your dog ate a dead frog? This is worrisome because dead animals could have bacteria or viruses. Definitely keep your dog away from eating dead animals, including frogs.
What Happens If A Dog Eats A Frog
If your dog eats a frog (and not a toad) then they will probably just get an upset stomach. But it can be difficult to tell the difference between a toad and frog, especially after your dog begins to eat them.
Your dog might get some minor irritation in their mouth and gums. In severe cases, your dog might experience toad poisoning.
If your dog ate a frog, foaming at mouth, then call the veterinarian immediately. You might also see your dog is having difficulty breathing. They will need emergency care as soon as possible.
“My dog ate a frog and is vomiting…” in this case, I also suggest calling your dog’s veterinarian. This is probably just them trying to get rid of the frog, but your dog’s veterinarian will need to provide a medical assessment.
What To Do If Your Dog Eats A Frog
The first thing you should do is rinse out your dog’s mouth with as much water as you can. Don’t force water down their throat, but try to let it rinse out their mouth.
Then, gently wipe out your dog’s tongue and gums to remove as much toxin as you can. Above all, you should do all this after you call your dog’s veterinarian.
My Dog Licked A Frog
If your dog licked a frog or toad, the toxic substance could burn or irritate its mouth. Flush your dog’s mouth with water and call your veterinarian immediately.
How To Stop Your Dog From Eating Frogs
The most humane way to keep toads away from your dog and their water bowls is to keep water bowls indoors and only leave them out for short periods of time when they won’t be tempting for toads or frogs.
During the rainy season, keep your dog away from swampy, marshy areas for too long. And before your dog bites a frog or toad, make sure they are able to properly respond to the “drop it” or “leave it” commands.
Dogs And Toads
In order to protect themselves, these small animals produce toxins on their skin. The common toad isn’t dangerous to dogs. There are really only two species of toads that could cause severe poisoning: the cane toad (rhinella marina) and the Colorado River/Sonoran Desert toad (incilius alvarius).
If your dog licks or eats either of those two toads, it could give them life-threatening symptoms.
The Colorado River or Sonoran Desert toad is native to California, New Mexico, Arizona, and Texas. It’s a very large toad, growing up to 7.5 inches long.
Also called Bufo toads or Bufo Marinus, the Cane Toad is usually found in tropical areas like Florida, Texas, Hawaii, and Louisianna. They are also pretty big, growing to be about 6-9 inches.
If your dog comes in contact with a marine toad or a giant toad, get them to leave it alone. The “drop it” or “leave it” command is very important and the best way to handle this situation.
Are Toads Poisonous To Dogs
Yes, there are a lot of poisonous toads in the United States. Toads produce the toxin in glands on their skin, on top of their back, and behind their eyes. This toxin can be left behind, so if your dog drinks from a water bowl after a toad was in it, it could get sick.
It’s a good idea to thoroughly wash your dog’s bowl if you found a toad in it.
The most common danger of poisonous toads is that it attacks the central nervous system, so it could give your dog cardiac arrhythmias.
Dog Ate Toad
Toads are very dangerous for dogs. The scary part is that an antidote for toad toxins doesn’t exist yet. If your dog ate a toad, take them to the veterinarian as soon as possible. They will do all they can to minimize your dog’s body from absorbing the toxins.
The best thing you can do for your dog is to flush its mouth and mucous membranes with water.
At the hospital, your veterinarian will give them appropriate treatment, like IV fluids, anti-nausea medications, and medications to control the heart rate. If needed, your pet might also receive some muscle relaxants or medications to control seizures.
Dog Ate Toad Symptoms
The most common symptoms in dogs that ate poisonous toads are vomiting and diarrhea, as your dog’s body will try to rid itself of the toad toxin.
Other symptoms include:
- irregular heartbeat
- loss of coordination
- red gums
- pulmonary edema
- increased body temperature
- excessive drooling
- upset gastrointestinal tract
If the toxin reaches your dog’s central nervous system, they might experience muscle tremors or seizures. This is why it’s so important to get them treatment as soon as possible.
The good news is that not all frogs are toxic to dogs; it’s toads that you have to worry about. If you think your dog ate a poisonous toad (or you don’t know if it was poisonous or not) seek immediate medical attention or call the pet poison helpline. When it comes to toad poisoning, rapid treatment is very important.
More Dog Food Resources
Here are some articles about other types of meat and protein and whether they are safe or toxic for your dog to eat.
- Can Dogs Eat Beef Jerky
- Can Dogs Eat Chicken Feet
- Can Dogs Eat Prosciutto
- Can Dogs Eat Pepperoni
- Can Dogs Eat Salami
- Can Dogs Eat Spam
- Can Dogs Have Fish
Find even more articles on human food dogs can and can’t eat here on Spoiled Hounds!
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