Pet Owners Need to Be Aware of Hogweed Sap, it's Toxic!

Posted by Christy Caplan
Hogweed Sap
Facebook/Jenn Rena

I didn't know about Hogweed until recently. A news segment here locally in Washington warned everyone to stay away from these toxic weeds! I have to keep the dogs on a leash now in one area where we leave as these weeds are everywhere and they get their noses on literally every part of each plant.

The below Facebook post is a warning to all pet owners! Look at this poor dog's face!

"We gave him Benadryl which did eliminate the hives but within an hour he developed large patches that were badly swollen , blistered and bleeding."

What's so dangerous is it looks really pretty when you're hiking. It's actually a nightmare.

Giant hogweed contains furanocoumarins, which is a toxin that causes severe phytophotodermatitis. The sap is found throughout the entire plant, but the stems and foliage have the highest concentration of the toxin.

Friends with fur babies beware! We always run, and hike with our dogs on the trails .last week after an evening run we...

Jenn Rena 发布于 2019年8月26日周一

What does it look like?

Giant hogweed or Heracleum mantegazzianum is considered a noxious weed by the federal government. It's part of the carrot family, but it can grow up to 14 feet tall. For a toxic plant, giant hogweed is surprisingly pretty, with thick leaves stretching five feet wide and large clusters of white flowers gracing the top of the plant in an umbrella pattern. Its stems (pictured at top left) are green with purple blotches and white hairs.

According to the DEC, the toxic plant grows in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland, Oregon, Washington, Michigan, Virginia, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine.

What are the symptoms? 

In the first few hours, the skin will be itchy and red, progressing to more severe symptoms within 12 hours.

  • Redness and itching
  • Black scars that can last for years
  • Photosensitization (ulcerative and exudative dermatitis)
  • Blindness (bumping into things, falling down) B
  • Blistering rash that is very painful within two days
  • Light sensitivity in the skin that is affected (could last for years)

How terrible are these symptoms!

Take your dog to the vet immediately if you suspect they've gotten into some Hogweed. If your dog is exposed then they'll have a sensitivity to sunlight for many years.

Your vet will probably apply a steroid cream, bandage the area, and you'll head home with some prednisone (also a steroid) that will help with the pain and swelling.

Have you ever seen Hogweed before! Please leave us a comment below!

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Pet Owners Need to Be Aware of Hogweed Sap, it's Toxic!