Owning a handicapped dog can be quite a challenge in some areas and to most owners, keeping these precious pups happy and healthy is the top concern. However, just like any other dog, handicapped dogs can get into quite the pickle if they aren’t watched carefully and often find their mouths around just about anything they can.
So imagine this. You go outside to see your dog eating a small animal which you later find out to be a lizard. For most owners, this event raises some alarm bells.
So are lizards really poisonous for your dog to eat? What symptoms should you look out for, and what should you do once you notice these symptoms?
Keep on reading to find out!
Are Lizards Poisonous to Dogs?
There are thousands of different lizard species that live around the world.
You can expect to find lizards from Florida to the Middle East and any other warm/humid climates worldwide. Because of this, you will often find lizards roaming around highly populated areas making it common for dogs to come into contact with them.
If you’re a dog owner, you’ll know this usually ends in your dog trying to eat it.
However, how much concern should this bring? Are lizards poisonous enough to seriously injure or kill a dog?
While some lizards are poisonous, Nigel Robert, a zoologist from More Reptiles, says, “their small size or mild potency usually prevent them from being able to do major damage.”
Rather than toxicity, salmonella and parasites are usually the culprits for some pretty nasty symptoms that dogs can undergo if they decide to eat a lizard. However, this is, in most cases, a rare occurrence.
Lizard bites can also cause a dog a great deal of discomfort if they occur during the attack. However, the Gila Monster and Mexican Beaded Lizard, common to The American Southwest, are the only species dogs commonly come in contact with that have a bite hard and potent enough to potentially injure a dog.
What are some common symptoms to look out for in these cases?
Symptoms to Look Out For
Salmonella: Dogs who have fallen to salmonella infection will usually display symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea.
Parasites: Lizards commonly carry parasites in their intestines, such as Pinworms, Hookworms, and Roundworms. When eaten, these parasites can, in turn, affect your dog over time and cause symptoms such as:
- Nutritional Deficiencies
- Swollen abdomen
- Loss of weight
Poisoning: Lizard poisoning is incredibly rare, considering most lizards don’t carry enough poison to affect a dog if eaten seriously. However, some lizards can excrete venom by biting, which can cause:
- Breathing difficulty
- Glassy eyes
- A bloody wound
- Swelling of the wound
There are a couple of important things to do if you notice your dog has any of the above symptoms.
- Monitor their condition:
- Keep them properly hydrated and fed.
- Contact their veterinarian if their symptoms get worse
- Contact the Pet Poison Hotline
Catching these symptoms in the early stages is always best and prevents your dog from having to go through any serious discomfort.
All-in-all, taking your dog to the veterinarian will always be your best bet! Your vet will have an easier time figuring out what’s wrong and administering the appropriate solution to the problem before it festers.
It’s common for dogs to want to put everything in their mouths; unfortunately, it sometimes happens to be a lizard.
While some lizards do contain toxins, they usually aren’t strong enough to do any serious damage to your dog if eaten due to their small size and low potency.
However, Salmonella, Parasites, and lizard bites can significantly affect your dog and cause some rather uncomfortable symptoms.
Suppose you notice any worsening symptoms after a lizard encounter. In that case, it’s essential to keep a close eye on your pup and contact its veterinarian as soon as possible.
Keeping your dog happy and healthy is incredibly important, so keep a close eye on your pup to prevent them from dealing with the consequences of messing with lizards.