When springtime hits in Oregon, the green becomes lush and vibrant….but don’t be fooled. Lurking in the coolness of the newly grown grasses is an enemy to all things canine. It hunts in packs, and multiplies quickly and vehemently. The scourge of the universe, they grow everywhere…..FOXTAILS!! Ugghhh, always a battle, and not one that is easily won.
The key that I have found to controlling this obnoxious grass, if you don’t want to use herbicides, is to cut, cut, cut before the ugly, spiky, invasive seed pods emerge, or better yet, pull them out of the ground. Despite this diligence, often times it will put forth its nasty fruit on short stalks very close to the ground. It doesn’t necessarily have to grow tall.
Just a reminder for you all out there…..foxtails are a menace, they are a danger, and they are a very real threat to the health of your dog. They voraciously prey on the unexpecting victim by grabbing onto fur, collars, and skin. A foxtail can work it’s way through the skin, and into the body…..they have been found inside internal organs, but generally cause mayhem within the ears, nose, between toes, and even in the intestines (by obvious means of access.)
As the summer heat and winds start to dry out the grasses around you, please be diligent to check your pet daily for these ruthless predators, and while you are at it, might as well check for ticks at the same time. If your dog starts shaking their head, sneezing, coughing, limping, or swelling around the feet….a foxtail may be the culprit. It only takes a very small, pointy barb to reek havoc, so please act quickly to limit infection and discomfort for your pet. Here are two good articles about this dangerous grass that I like to call a weed….. http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/foxtail-grass-and-your-dog
and here…… http://thebark.com/content/protecting-your-dog-against-foxtails
Later this morning, I tackled a patch of the ruthless predators that had grown up around one of the outer edges of my garden….
I pulled them out by hand because cutting them with a weed-whacker would throw them everywhere, and a mower wouldn’t work in that space. Thankfully, most were still green and not to the falling-apart, dried-out stage like these…
….ugghhh!! It’s a battle!! The result was quite dramatic…..
….you can actually see the garden!! The outcome….three big old feed bags…..
….full of these
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