July 12, 2024


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The oak marching moth continues to spread in North Rhine-Westphalia. Not only must caterpillars be approached by humans, but they are also dangerous for animals.

Ham – The small, hairy oak procession moth not only causes irritation and allergic reactions in humans, but dogs are also at risk. Caterpillars usually build nests on tree trunks and branches. Therefore, be especially careful near forests and roads. What should owners pay attention to when walking their dog?

Oak marching moths are dangerous to dogs

Depending on the weather, the oak procession moths produce poisonous hairs around late April. Touching caterpillar hair can cause contact injuries to humans and animals.For dogs, encounters with poisonous caterpillars can even be fatal, the magazine reports. edgus.de. Your four-legged friend can suffer from a variety of conditions.

  • rash, usually on the nose, mucous membranes, or between the toes
  • Swelling around the muzzle, nose bridge, and eyes
  • hives
  • skin nodule
  • conjunctivitis
  • inflammation of the nasal mucosa
  • swelling of the respiratory tract
  • difficulty swallowing
  • frequent sneezing
  • shortness of breath
  • Redness and pain in the tongue and throat area
  • Malaise
  • heat
  • intense panting voice
  • allergic shock
Oak procession moths build nests on tree trunks.
The oak marching moth’s toxic hairs can be harmful to dogs. (Iconic image) © Robert Poorten / imago

How can dog owners protect their animals?

The Nature Conservancy is advising dog owners to move as far away as possible from areas where nests or deposits have been found. Caterpillar hairs can cause damage for up to a year, so dog owners in affected areas should be careful even in the fall. If your dog comes into contact with an oak moth, the affected area should be thoroughly flushed with water. Then consult your veterinarian.

Because they are dangerous to animals and humans, many cities in North Rhine-Westphalia have taken active measures against oak marching moths. There is a strange method against poisonous caterpillars.



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