Dogs are notorious for eating disgusting things. But we really hit rock bottom when our family dog ate maggots from the trash can left open in the kitchen. The stench was overpowering but that didn’t bother her. She had already eaten them all!
Has this ever happened to you? We’ll show you how to handle your dog eating maggots if this ever happens.
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Check For These Signs
Maggots don’t present a serious health hazard to your dog if they’re eaten. The real danger is if the maggots found a wound on your dog to nourish themselves with.
There are a few things that you should check.
The first is to see where the maggots came from. In most cases, it means your dog was either eating their own poop, another dog’s poop, rotten food, or their normal food. In the case of poop, you should start making it a habit to clean up after your dog.
Flies leave their eggs on poop because it gives their maggot babies plenty of food when they hatch. If the poop has disease in it, then the maggots pick it up and spread it to other places. Because they can sometimes chew up your gardens and infect your plants, you don’t want to be consuming toxins that came from your dog’s poop.
They also lay their eggs on rotten food. This can be disconcerting for pet owners because rotten food isn’t good for their dogs to eat. It can make their stomachs up and cause diarrhea and other problems.
Sometimes maggots can be present in dry dog food as well. This is because manufacturers sometimes store their dog food in places where flies thrive. They can get inside of the bag, lay their eggs, then scamper off. As a result, your dog eats their food and ingests maggots, too.
To ensure your dog is safe, you should check to see if they’re pooping normally or have diarrhea. You’ll also want to check on their appetite. Maggots, themselves, won’t poison your dog. However, if they picked up some toxins before making their way into your dog’s stomach, then it may make your dog ill.
Finally, you should check to see if any of the maggots escaped your dog’s mouth and landed on a wound. This is the biggest threat to your dog. Maggots will feast on the wound and continue to open it up.
It’s not uncommon to find strays with holes in their bodies because maggots have infested their wounds. Checking your dog for any wounds can ensure you don’t have a maggot infestation on your hands.
There are a few problems that you may come across if your dog eats maggots. They include:
- Maggot infestation
- Toxins from rotten food
Flies lay their eggs in places where the maggots can eat. That’s usually rotten food and poop. However, they also lay their eggs in living wounds. Even a small scrape can be an ideal location for a few baby maggots.
Any maggots that escape your dog’s mouth may land on its body and wiggle their way to a wound. It will start to eat at the wound and make it bigger and bigger. It’s not uncommon for flies to lay hundreds of eggs. Your dog could have hundreds of maggots eating away at its body.
Eventually, the maggots may make it to the dog’s organs and brain. It will consume those as well.
Toxins from the maggots is another problem that you may encounter. If the maggots somehow became diseased before their birth, then they may pass this onto your dog in their stomach. As a result, your dog may experience an upset stomach. They may vomit or have diarrhea for a time.
The other source of toxins that you should be concerned about is food or poop. By eating rotten food or poop, your dog may become ill. Poop, especially, could carry a disease that your dog picks up.
Rotten food has its share of toxins, too. They could make your dog severely ill.
What To Do
There are a few things you should do immediately. The first is to identify where the maggots came from. If it was rotten food, then you should dispose of it and wash the area. If the maggots came from poop, then you should remove the poop and dispose of it correctly. This will ensure your dog doesn’t get back into it later.
You can also check to see if the maggots came from your dog’s dry food. You’ll want to look for small white specks. These are fly eggs. Inside of them is where the maggots are growing. You can toss out the tainted part of the bag and keep the food that is safe from maggots.
The next thing you should do is keep an eye on your dog. According to several vets, your dog will most likely be fine. They may experience a little gastrointestinal distress, but it should pass in a day or two.
To ensure your dog didn’t pick up any maggots on any wounds, you should also comb through their hair and look for wounds. Check their feet, ears, snout, and their body for any signs. For longer-haired dogs, this can be difficult. It may be a good idea to groom them and give them a cut in order to perform the search better.
You may also want to add some fortifying formula to their dog food to give their digestion a bit of help. This can help them filter through any lingering toxins in their body.
Do I Need To See The Vet Or Go To The Emergency Animal Hospital?
In most cases, you won’t need to visit either. Visiting your vet may be able to give you some more tips on how to ease any stomach ache that they’re experiencing.
The only time you’d need to visit the hospital is if a wound becomes infested with maggots.
Safe Alternatives To Play With
The safest alternative is to keep dogs away from poop and rotten food. Cleaning up your yard and home can prevent exposure to maggots. If they’re hungry between meal times, then a good alternative is a snack that encourages them to chew.
Can Dogs Eat Maggots?
Although maggots aren’t poisonous to dogs, it’s better if your dog avoids eating them. This will ensure they also refrain from eating rotten food or poop. Those two sources of maggots can give them far more trouble than the maggots, themselves.