A North Carolina woman is mourning the unexpected death of two of her pups, the Raleigh, N.C., TV station WRAL reports.
Janna Joyner came home to find her dogs Drago, a 3-year-old Saint Bernard, and Adoni, an 8-year-old lab retriever mix, dead. After she rushed them to a vet, blood samples revealed the dogs had amatoxin in their system, a toxin found in poisonous mushrooms. It appears the two pets ate the mushrooms while playing in her backyard.
Joyner now urges pet owners to be careful and wants to warn them about the mortality of some mushrooms. Joyner explained that her dogs were like her babies.
“A dog that consumes [Amanita] mushrooms can go from healthy to very clinically sick, to die within 24 to 48 hours. So it’s a very rapid disease syndrome,” said David Dorman, a toxicology professor at N.C. State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine.
There is no way of knowing if a mushroom is toxic or not. Dorman advises pet owners to get rid of mushrooms on their property to avoid danger.
“[It’s] always best to cut them, bag them, and throw them away. And then wash your hands yourself so you don’t get exposed,” he said.
He also said that should your pet eat a mushroom, treat it as a medical emergency and take them straight to a vet.
Nicole Kincaid, who works with Joyner at a nonprofit that helps foster dogs, described her fellow pet lover as a “wonderful person and wonderful dog owner.” Before the recent disaster, Joyner had a total of six dogs.
“She didn’t know they [the mushrooms] were there, they were under the mulch. It’s just scary to know how close it was to home and how it can happen to any dog,” said Kincaid. “That’s what we’re really hoping, that we can educate people.”
Despite the horrific tragedy, Joyner continues her mission of helping dogs in need and has recently taken in a new foster.
In a touching tribute to her late dogs, she wrote, “Most know that I lost two of my pack members recently, but foster needs never go away.” Joyner, as attentive as ever to the needs of her canine friends, added that her new foster dog “has an issue with his spine. He’s 8 weeks old and is going to a specialist this week to see what we can do for him.”
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