With access to the outside world, both cats and dogs are naturally curious about their surroundings and ready to explore. Because they are natural predators, they like pursuing and capturing small prey such as birds, rodents, and insects. Due to their unpredictable movement, frogs and toads are also an excellent choice for pets to chase.
However, did you know that if your dog or cat encounters a toad rather than a frog, the likelihood of something horrible happening is much higher? And you might be wondering: Are frogs poisonous to dogs or cats? Continue reading to learn which frogs are poisonous so you can keep your pet safe!
Are Frogs Poisonous To Dogs Or Cats?
Although all frogs produce skin fluids, most of them are not poisonous to domestic pets. But this is not the case for pickerel and tree frogs. Both pickerel and tree frogs are commonly found in the United States. They release toxins in their skin as a defense whenever they are attacked by predators. And if your dog or cat bites these frogs, the toxins can make them sick.
In the US, the Pickerel Frog is unique in that it secretes toxic host-defense peptides in its skin. Many mammals, including cats and dogs, find these secretions to be unpleasant or even deadly, although they often only mildly irritate human skin.
In most cases, your dog or cat will vomit it back up if eaten because it’s too slimy. They may experience diarrhea or other symptoms detailed below, but it’s more likely that your pet will go about their day as usual. Symptoms are not typically fatal.
The tree frog produces a toxin peptide called Caerulein on its skin. This toxin serves as a protection for this species against predators. If your dog or cat bites a tree frog, ingestion of the caerulein toxin may make your pet salivate excessively.
Tree frogs can poison cats or dogs, resulting in diarrhea. The toxin, however, isn’t strong enough to cause lasting issues or death.
Symptoms Of Severe Frog Poisoning In Dogs Or Cats Include:
The neurological system, heart, and blood arteries are the primary targets of frog toxins. It’s important to keep an eye on your pet and get them to a vet should they show any of the following symptoms:
- Increased production of saliva
- Howling, whimpering, or whining
- Foaming at the mouth
- smacking their lips together
- Falling over or circling in place
In severe cases, the toxin from a pickerel frog can cause a dog or cat to collapse, have severe convulsions, and can kill it if it isn’t treated.
What To Do If Your Dog Or Cat Has Encountered A Poisonous Frog
It’s important to give your pet a lot of water to drink if you suspect it has bitten a poisonous frog. And if your dog or cat starts to experience severe symptoms like seizures, get your pet to a vet immediately. Depending on your pet’s symptoms, the vet may administer intravenous fluids and other medications. There is no way to tell how your pet will respond and it’s not wise to wait around to find out!
How To Keep Your Dog Or Cat Away From Frogs
Cats and dogs that have access to the outdoors may hunt, kill, and consume tiny prey, including frogs. However, there are always ways to keep your pet safe from these tiny amphibians.
- Ensure that your dog or cat does not wander too far from the property when they are out in the wild.
- Small ponds near your home are the most likely places to find small frogs, so keep your pet away from these regions.
- Remove any standing water sources in your immediate area, as frogs are drawn to these.
- If you see frogs in your yard, you may want to move them to a pond nearby.
Are Pet Frogs Poisonous To Dogs Or Cats?
Poison is rarely an issue with a pet frog. Frogs are poisonous due to their diet of ants, mites, maggots, spiders, and beetles. Even poison dart frogs are safe to keep as pets since their toxicity lowers when fed a different diet in captivity.
Therefore, it’s unlikely that anything bad will happen unless your pets get their mouths on the tree frog. However, it’s preferable to keep animals apart as much as possible because you never know how they’ll react to each other.
Some cats and dogs just pursue and play with frogs, while others inflict wounds on them to prey upon them. If your dog or cat eats one, don’t panic. Remember, most garden frogs aren’t dangerous and are okay to eat. However, if your pet eats a deadly frog, they may vomit, feel sick, and lose their appetite, so take them to the clinic if you are unsure or they start to develop any symptoms.