Mushroom toxicosis is rarely diagnosed in dogs and is poorly reported in the veterinary literature. This report suggests that mushroom toxicosis is a potentially under-diagnosed condition in first opinion practice in the UK. Nine dogs with clinical signs consistent with mushroom toxicosis were identified from the records of an out-of-hours emergency service between August 2010 and January 2011. Four dogs were later excluded because of clinical inconsistencies. Clinical signs included acute profuse ptyalism (5/5), diarrhoea (5/5), vomiting (4/5), hypovolaemia (4/5), stuporous (3/5) or obtunded mentation (1/5), miosis (2/5) and hypothermia (2/5). Serum lipase activity was elevated in 4/4 dogs; canine-specific pancreatic lipase was elevated in the remaining dog. Four dogs recovered with aggressive intravenous fluid therapy, analgesia and supportive care; the remaining dog was euthanased due to severe clinical signs and financial constraints.
Mushroom toxicosis is an important differential diagnosis for acute gastroenteritis and one possible cause of some cases of “Seasonal Canine Illness”. Affected dogs may demonstrate elevated pancreatic enzymes and mushroom toxicosis should be considered in cases of elevated lipase or abnormal semi-quantitative canine-specific pancreatic lipase activities.