Country dogs – both pets and working dogs – often suffer when grass seeds grow to abundance following a good season. Most grass seeds are designed to burrow into the soil to germinate – and that means they can also penetrate and travel up and into dog’s ears, noses, eyes, skin and muscle tissues.
Don’t underestimate their potential for causing persistent and very serious infections!
Common grass seed lodging places include deep down ear canals, behind dogs’ third eyelids (leading to corneal ulceration and loss of sight if not removed early), and between the toes. Here they puncture the skin and migrate into deeper tissues – even occasionally reappearing as an infection further up the leg.
Our vets have removed seeds from potentially fatal granulomas (chronic infections) in the abdomen and thorax (chest cavity) – in fact we’ve found grass seeds in almost every part of the dog.
One of the easiest ways to minimise grass seed damage is to clip dogs in summer, especially around the ears, eyes, abdomen and between the toes, and check daily for invading seeds in these areas and throughout your dog’s coat.