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Are Cicadas Harmful to Dogs?

Like it or not… it’s happening! After 17 years of hibernating underground, trillions (yes, that’s trillions with a “T”) of Cicadas have started emerging. If you’re anything like me who isn’t a fan of

creepy, crawly things (especially ones that fly), it’s going to be a long six weeks. Our four-legged friends, on the other hand, might think they’ve died and gone to heaven and mistake Brood X for an all-you-can-eat buffet of crispy, crunchy snacks. This begs the question “are Cicadas harmful for dogs?”

The short answer is no- not in moderation.

Pet nutritionist, Chris Gabriel, also owner of Nature’s Nibbles in Del Ray and Hollin Hall says that like anything in life, “they are not harmful in moderation.” He goes on to explain that while they don’t sting or bite, eating too many can result in GI issues. Gut woes would be similar to digestive issues that are caused by ingesting an item outside their normal diet such as mulch, sticks and other foreign objects.

Typical symptoms would include upset stomachs or diarrhea. Pups with more insatiable appetites who don’t quite adhere to the “less is more” adage, could have more severe issues and you should reach out to your veterinarian if you are concerned. Signs to look for would be severe vomiting, bloody stools or lethargy as this could indicate a GI obstruction.

While it’s going to be near impossible to fully prevent your dog from dining "al fresco" this Cicada season- we do have a few tips!

  • Don’t leave your dog unattended outside while the Cicadas are in full swing

  • Keep your dog on a leash during on walks (if you don’t normally) so that you can direct them away from the insects

  • Don’t freak out if your pup does ingest a few (it will happen!) Just make sure to be aware of any symptoms that might seem excessive and contact your veterinarian right away if you suspect something is off

If you have any questions or want additional information or advice, contact us!


About the Author

The daughter of an award-winning travel writer, Kimberly has followed in her mother’s footsteps and has had articles published in numerous publications. She got her first puppy from Santa Claus when she was four years old and has never known a life that didn’t include four-legged family members. An animal advocate, she has rescued pets, volunteered at shelters and has even been known to nurse an injured sparrow back to health. When she’s not busy running a successful pet care business and providing care to her four-legged customers, you can rest assured that she is pampering her 19-year-old kitty, Scout.

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