Morkie on grassPerfect lawn: sick Morkie

We love our green lawns; last year, pesticides account for more than 32% of lawn and garden supply sales. … that’s nearly two BILLION dollars a year.

Weed killers, insect control products and fungicides can be very dangerous for our pets.

“Lawn chemicals can vary widely in their safe use around pets,” said Dr. Tina Wismer, medical director of the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center. “Some items, such as fertilizers, may only cause mild stomach upset, while others, such as insecticides, can be deadly.”  

47% of dogs over 10 die of cancerA study by has shown that dogs exposed to lawn care chemicals have a significantly higher risk of contracting bladder cancer.

If your Morkie lives on lawn that’s treated 4 or more times a year, he has TWICE the chance of getting canine malignant lymphoma, compared to dogs whose owners did not use the herbicide.

Signs your Morkie has ingested herbicide

The most common ways of ingesting herbicide is by licking the lawn or chewing grass, or by licking his feet after.

If you see your Morkie getting into any lawn products direct, seek emergency care immediately.  Even if he seems fine, a poisoned animal needs immediate Veterinary treatment to counteract these toxic chemicals.

Signs he might have ingested some of these poisons? These vary by strength and nature of the herbicide but milder symptoms can include:

  • skin and eye irritation
  • breathing difficulties
  • diarrhea and vomiting
  • muscular weakness
  • lack of coordination

Signs of an emergency situation include seizures, explosive vomiting and diarrhea, convulsions, high fever, staggering and leg weakness, rapid heartbeat, and rapid or labored breathing.

CONTACT YOUR VET RIGHT AWAY. Do not induce vomiting unless the Vet tells you to.

Fertilizer poisoning

If your Morkie has ingested a considerable amount of fertilizer, which is made up of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (potash) along with iron, copper, zinc, cobalt, boron, manganese and molybdenum.

Very small amounts can make your Morkie sick to his stomach and cause diarrhea. Larger amounts however, can be extremely toxic and can lead to deadly pancreatitis among other illnesses.

Poison warning

Common signs to watch for:

  • Drooling
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting (acute or delayed onset)
  • Diarrhea
  • Abnormal posture due to abdominal pain
  • Difficulty breathing

Again if you suspect your Morkie has eaten fertilizer – even if you haven’t seen it – contact your Vet right away.

Solutions? 

morkie-enjoying-the-outdoorsUnfortunately it’s not just your lawn; virtually every public place, park, golf course… everywhere, is treated with products that can be poisonous.

In your own home, carefully follow all directions when applying anything, or consider leaving your lawn ‘natural.’ There are pet-friendly and nontoxic fertilizer options, as well as natural ways to treat your lawn for weeds, including organic herbicides, such as carbamate. They are still toxic but often produce milder effects.

Read more about pet-friendly gardens here

  • To reduce risks, always store lawn and garden products well away from  your Morkie’s access, and keep everything well sealed.
  • Keep your dog off a treated lawn for at least 48 hours.
  • Alternate when your front and back lawns are treated, and use the least treated one.

Ditch your lawn?

Some people have decided that traditional lawns use up too many resources and are potentially very harmful. This family in Oakland, California decided to swap out their lawn for a productive vegetable garden:

garden-start compost-in

garden-fully-in Read more here

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