Dog Health: Grass Seeds

Dog | Grass Seeds

An Introduction to Grass Seeds

As the summer approaches, we need to keep an eye out for pesky grass seeds (barley grass seeds).  When the weather gets warmer, grass grows long and goes to seed.  A dried seed head is like a little weapon and is so dangerous for your dog (as he runs happily through long grass).  A grass seed is like a sharp arrow that has spiky hairs.  It can burrow into your dogs hair and they can potentially work their way into the skin.

Once a grass seed burrows its way into the skin, it can migrate deeper and deeper into the surrounding tissues. Subsequently tissues become swollen, painful, and infected. 

Erin Coomer - Veterinarian (October 2013)



Causes of Grass Seeds

When grass is dry (and conditions are warm) this is the time we worry about grass seeds.  A grass seed can potentially lodge into your pet anywhere on its body.  The main problem sites are

-  In the feet, between toes

-  Up nostrils (especially of dogs that keep their nose to the ground...
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Symptoms of Grass Seeds

Owners may notice a range of symptoms.  Most commonly

-  Lameness

-  Swollen paw/s or toe/s

-  An oozing sore

-  Shaking the head

-  Squinting or closed eye/s

-  Droopy ear/s

-  Sneezing

-  Runny nose

-  Pawing at the face

-  Cough




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Treatment of Grass Seeds

TREATMENT

If you are concerned, take your dog to the Vet.  Often the problem grass seed is out of sight (and it may be burrowing deeper into the tissues). 

Your Vet will be able to tell you quickly if they are concerned about a migrating grass seed.

To remove a problem grass seed...
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