Mushrooms – Killing Them

Q: Is there something to spray on an area to kill mushrooms? I’m worried about my daughter’s dog.

A: There is no anti-mushroom product. Mushrooms emerge when a fungus which is decomposing underground organic material (tree roots, thatch, etc) sends up a reproductive body (the mushroom).The only way to eliminate them is to replace the landscape with sand or gravel, thus eliminating organic material.

Dr. Sharon Gwaltney-Brant is Medical Director of the American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Poison Control Center. She advises that while a small percentage of mushrooms are actually poisonous, it is best to err on the side of caution when mushrooms are near dogs. Young dogs or inquisitive breeds are more likely to ingest mushrooms. If the mushroom is poisonous, liver damage may result. The dog will appear pale and lethargic. Dr. Gwaltney-Brant says that if you remove mushrooms from your landscape, do it when the dogs are not present. If they see you paying attention to a certain spot they may investigate it when you’re gone and could come in contact with mushroom fragments.

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