Dogs, by instinct, will always want to snoop around and attack or bite anything that captivates their interest, including other animals like water dragons. However, when a dog kills or attacks a water dragon, some dog parents are concerned as to whether the reptile is poisonous to their dog or not.
According to some studies, water dragons do contain a trace amount of venom, but not enough to induce poisoning in dogs or humans. We can therefore be certain that water dragons are not poisonous to dogs.
This article is for you, if your dog has attacked or killed a water dragon or if you reside in an area where water dragons are abundant and want to know if they can harm your dog. Read on to learn everything there is to know about whether or not water dragons are poisonous to dogs from our small animal veterinarian.
Are Water Dragons Venomous To Dogs?
Water dragons are large lizards that are both terrestrial and aquatic. They are reptiles and love to busk in the sun to warm up their bodies. They are sometimes known as Australian water dragons or western water dragons.
According to research water dragons do contain trace amounts of venom but they are not considered poisonous to dogs or humans since their venom is not potent and not enough to kill a dog.
Their venom is barely strong enough to aid them in hunting down their prey, which is usually small insects. Hence, we can safely claim that water dragons are not poisonous or venomous to dogs, even if they consume them.
The fact that they are not poisonous to dogs doesn’t mean that they cannot hurt your pooch or that it is safe for your dog to interact with these creatures because they are armed with sharp claws and teeth.
What Happens If A Dog Kills A Water Dragon?
Small water dragons pose little threat to dogs. As a result, it is usually not very risky for the dog if it attacks or kills a small baby or juvenile water dragon.
However, if your dog chases or kills a large adult water dragon, it may be in for a fight considering that adult water dragons will fiercely defend themselves if they are being attacked by another animal, such as a dog.
In addition to having strong claws that can tear open the skin of your dog, adult water dragons can also bite strongly. If proper treatment is not provided, the bite or claw wounds from a water dragon on your dog’s body could become infected.
Usually, there isn’t much to worry about if your dog simply chases or kills a water dragon without consuming it whole or any of its body parts. Nevertheless, if a dog consumes a water dragon or any of its body parts, major health issues might develop.
What Happens If A Dog Eats A Water Dragon?
Water dragons are reptiles, and although they are not poisonous to dogs, they may still be hosts to disease-causing parasites, bacteria, and other contagious microorganisms that can make your dog sick. The following health issues could arise if your dog consumed a water dragon or any of its body parts after killing it.
1. Salmonella infection
Salmonella is one of the most prevalent bacteria found in reptiles, especially lizards, and it can cause a serious infection in dogs. There is a good chance that your dog may contract salmonella if it consumes a water dragon.
Symptoms of this bacterial infection include severe diarrhea (which may or may not contain blood or mucus), high fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, etc. Water dragons may also contain bacteria other than Salmonella.
2. Parasitic infection
Since they are both aquatic and terrestrial, water dragons may carry parasites. Your dog might get infected with parasites or worms if it consumes a water dragon. However, depending on the type of parasitic organism and its location in the body, parasite symptoms might vary.
Given their reptilian status, water dragons have a thick, scaly skin, and the majority of them have sharp spikes on their head. A water dragon can become lodged in a dog’s throat and cause the dog to choke.
In such scenarios never try to pull out the water dragon from your dog’s mouth since you may further complicate the situation and doing so might result in an injury due to the spikes and claws of the water dragon.
The best thing you can do if your dog ingested a water dragon or any of its body parts is to take it to the vet as soon as you can. Get your dog examined by a veterinarian, and make sure to properly describe the situation to the vet so that nothing is missed. Additionally, let the vet know if your dog has contracted any wounds so they can be treated.
Can A Water Dragon Bite Your Dog?
Yes, if they feel threatened, water dragons will bite your dog. Like most other lizards, water dragons have strong tricuspid teeth that can deliver a painful bite.
When they bite the soft skin of a dog, it can be agonizing since their teeth are designed to grab and cling onto their prey, like insects having hard exoskeletons.
If the bite wound is not deep and no bleeding has occurred, there is no need to be concerned; simply wash the bite area with clean water and apply some antiseptic. If there is bleeding, however, you should visit a veterinarian.
Water dragons are stunning reptiles that are native to Australia. Water dragons are not considered to be poisonous to dogs. Even though they are not poisonous to dogs, they can still harm them with their sharp teeth and claws.
It is important to keep your furry friend away from these creatures because if a dog consumes a water dragon, it could suffer from a variety of health problems, including bacterial infections, viral infections, parasitic infections, and in some extreme situations choking.
Consult a veterinarian if you believe your dog has ingested a water dragon or was engaged in a serious fight with one to ensure that your dog is healthy and out of harm’s way.