Dog owners will tell you that dogs eat almost anything when they think that they’re not being watched.
It can be a source of stress for many owners, and they feel like they need to know every single thing a dog can and cannot eat.
The good news is that the majority of moss is not toxic to dogs, so eating it won’t do much harm at all. Certain types of peat moss can cause gastrointestinal irritation, but that’s about as bad as it can get.
Today we’re delving deeper into the relationship between moss and dogs. Let’s get started!
What Is Moss?
Moss is a small nonvascular spore-bearing plant that grows on land. It can grow anywhere – from forests to beaches, and even on the roof of your house.
Interestingly, there are at least 12,000 species of moss on earth. That’s a lot of moss to be worried about your dog eating!
Moss is a green and fuzzy-looking plant that grows in small layers. It can grow very quickly, and sometimes seems to appear overnight!
Can Dogs Drink Moss Water?
Yes, many dogs drink moss water and are completely fine. Moss used to be used as a filtration system before modern technologies came along, so really your dog should just be drinking filtered water.
However, it is worth noting that moss can look very similar to blue or green algae in the water. This is toxic to dogs, so make sure you don’t mistake the two.
If in doubt, don’t let your dog drink from moss water. However, if they already have without you noticing, it should be fine. Consult a veterinarian if your dog is acting differently from normal.
Is Roof Moss Poisonous To Dogs?
Moss can grow on roofs because it is the optimal place for it to thrive.
It’s unlikely that your dog would be able to get onto the roof and eat the moss up there, but it is possible that a fallen tile had moss covering it, that your dog snacked on.
Roof moss shouldn’t be toxic to your dog, and we’d be more worried that they ate some of the tiles.
Check the tile to make sure it’s not broken or bitten, and keep an eye on your dog. If their demeanor changes, take them to a vet.
Is Garden Moss Poisonous To Dogs?
Garden moss is one of the most common moss types for dog owners to be afraid of.
This is because it can grow all around your garden, and it’s a fast spreader. It can be difficult to keep on top of, only adding stress to owners.
The good news is that you don’t need to keep your dog inside until you can put an end to your garden moss once and for all. It is not poisonous to dogs, and they should be able to eat it without any issues.
This is true unless you have sprayed any chemicals onto the moss in an attempt to kill it. If you have sprayed it, your dog could ingest this by eating it.
However, these chemicals should only offer a few gastrointestinal issues, none of which are super serious. Still, you should avoid your dog from consuming these pesticides.
Another point to add is that mosses often grow near wild mushrooms. Many wild mushrooms are poisonous to both humans and animals.
If your dog is eating moss and accidentally consumes a mushroom, they need to see a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Is Peat Moss Poisonous For Dogs?
Peat moss is otherwise known as partially-decomposed sphagnum moss.
It’s often used by gardeners as a type of compost to retain moisture in the soil. This is often used in gardens, so your dog might be around it often.
Since it is used by gardeners, peat moss is often treated with pesticides and other chemicals. These can be toxic to dogs, so peat moss should not be consumed by pets.
However, peat moss is not listed as a toxic substance for dogs.
Just bear in mind that treated peat moss can be harmful to dogs. If you have a gardener, we would recommend asking them whether they use peat moss or not and whether it is treated with pesticides.
This will give you an insight into whether you should be concerned about your dog eating it or not.
Pesticides can irritate dogs’ eyes, skin, digestive tract, and breathing. If you see any changes in your dog, make sure to contact your vet right away.
Peat Moss Effects On Dogs
As we have just mentioned, pesticides on peat moss can irritate your dog in more ways than one.
Here are some of the symptoms you can spot that indicates they’ve ingested pesticides or other harmful chemicals.
Irritation Of The Eyes
Peat moss should be kept away from the eyes at all costs. Not only would it be very irritating for your dog, but it could also get trapped in the eye and cause an infection.
If you think your dog has peat moss in their eyes, use a dog-friendly eyewash to try and get it out. Carefully open one eye at a time and flush the eye.
You can also use saline solution or fresh water if you don’t have an eyewash for dogs.
Continue flushing each eye until you’re happy that all of the peat moss has gone. If you can’t seem to get it out, contact a vet right away and consider using a dog eye patch in the interim. Peat moss in the eyes would look like small strands of fuzzy string.
Irritation Of The Skin
Dogs love rolling in moss, and this exposure can also affect their skin. The most common issues are irritation and inflammation, which can lead to excessive itching.
This can then lead to painful wounds if they itch too much to break the skin.
To avoid these negative effects, it’s important to wash your dog as soon as they have come into contact with peat moss. Rinse their coat and skin thoroughly with water.
Not all dogs have adverse reactions to rolling in peat moss, so you might not have to wash it off them. However, we consider it better to be safe than sorry and give them a bath anyway. If you would like some recommendations for the best Anti-Itch Shampoo for Dogs, why not check our our review guide.
Irritation Of The Digestive Tract
Peat moss isn’t toxic for dogs – just the pesticides it’s been treated with. This can cause stomach issues such as upsets, which leads to symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting.
If these symptoms go on for too long or you’re worried about your dog, don’t hesitate to consult a professional.
Irritation Of The Breathing
Fresh peat moss can irritate the breathing of your dog, so it’s advised that you take your dog somewhere else to run around if you’ve just planted peat moss in your garden.
Peat moss is easily breathed in thanks to its flakiness. This can easily get into your dog’s lungs and cause irritation, leading to coughing and difficulty breathing.
The severity of this adverse effect depends on how much moss your dog has been exposed to, but the general consensus is that you should keep them away from it as much as possible.
Thanks for reading! To sum up, the majority of moss types are not poisonous to dogs. The only type of moss that poses a threat is peat moss, and this is used by gardeners as a compost.
Make sure you ask your gardener whether they’re using peat moss treated with chemicals or not.
You might consider asking them to use an alternative compost altogether – one that does not pose a threat to your dog.
Peat moss treated with pesticides can cause irritation to the skin, eyes, breathing, and digestive system in dogs. If you’re worried about exposure, consult your veterinarian as soon as possible.