Letters to the Editor

Beware death caps

This is a warning to all pet owners. On June 27, my 6-month-old German wire-haired pointer found a death cap mushroom. He was running on our property late in the evening with something in his mouth. He laid down in the grass and started chewing on it. When I approached him to identify it, he ran off in his playful manner and immediately returned without it. I didn’t concern myself, as I only saw him with whatever he had for such a short time.

The next day he started throwing up. As time progressed, he was throwing up more, so I took him to the vet, but it was too late. The symptoms of ingestion don’t start showing up for six to 20 hours, and by then it is too late; the liver damage has started.

We’ve had dogs for over 40 years and never heard of this. It may not seem like mushroom season, but this was an old dried-out death cap, and they can remain toxic for years. Please go to http://www.mushrooms911.blogspot.com for more information. These mushrooms are not native to California and they are becoming more prolific with time.