Bufo Toads: Be in the Know
What You Need to Know About Bufo Toads to Keep Your Pets Safe
How to spot bufo toads?
- Typically 6 to 9 inches in size
- Grayish-brown or reddish-brown
- Beige or yellow belly
- Has enlarged glands behind their eyes that angle down
- Most typically seen under street lights of suburbs
- Seen mostly during rainy season (May to October) and at night
What kind of effect can a bufo toad have on a pet?
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, a bufo toad releases toxins which can kill your pet, or leave them in serious distress in as few as 15 minutes. The toad can “shoot” its toxin when it feels threatened. This toxin is highly toxic to dogs, cats, and other animals. Dogs may try to attack or put their mouth around the bufo toad, which means they might have gotten a large amount of the toxins secreted from the toad into their mouth. As the pet gets smaller or the toad larger, means a greater risk of toxicity. For humans, the toxin might only cause skin irritation.
Symptoms may include:
- Profuse salivation, may be foamy like shaving cream
- Difficulty breathing
- Brick red gums
- Frantic or disoriented behavior
What to do if your pet comes in contact with a bufo toad?
A curious dog or cat could approach the toad and sniff or lick it resulting in the pet getting poisoned. Bufo toads are also attracted to water so if you leave a water dish in the yard they may sit on the rim. If they stay there long enough they could leave behind enough toxin to make your pet sick. If this is the case, there are certain things that need to be done immediately, as time is of the essence!
- Use a wet washcloth to wipe the gums and tongue of your pet to remove toxins.
- Do NOT use a hose, as this can send the toxins down your pet’s throat.
- Take your pet to the nearest vet or emergency clinic!
We offer veterinary services at our shelter that can treat your pet who has been exposed to a bufo toad. Click here for directions.
How do you keep your pet away from Bufo Toads?
Here are some tips to keep bufo toads away from your property:
- Do not leave pet food in open dishes in the yard
- Do not leave water dishes outside of the house
- Bufo toads are attracted to water and can sit in your pet’s bowl long enough to leave behind toxins endangering your furry friend
- Keep your dog on a leash and supervised while outdoors
- Carry a flashlight at night so you can see what your dog is sniffing
- Clean any food scraps from pet bowls
- Clean any food scraps from outside tables and grills
- Trim the underside of shrubs
- Clear brush piles from your yard