Highly toxic toads are popping up in Arizona after the state experienced heavy monsoon rains.
The toads, known as the Sonoran Desert toad, are the largest native toad in the United States and grow 7+inches in length.
They spend most of their time underground. However, they reemerge each summer in search of moisture from the monsoon season.
Sonoran Desert toads release a potent toxin from their skin that is strong enough to kill a full-grown dog, according to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.
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Poisonings can occur if a victim ingests or inhales the toxin, such as a dog picking up or mouthing a toad.
Speaking with AZ Family, the managing director of the Banner Poison Center, Maureen Roland, said, “Leave these toads alone and be sure to keep your dogs away from them.”
Symptoms of poisoning in dogs include excessive salivation, irregular heartbeat and gait, and pawing at the mouth.
The toads are active from May to September, though they’re most active during the rainiest summer months. They can be found between Central Arizona through southwestern New Mexico, and in parts of Mexico. While they were once found in California, there haven’t been any sightings of the toad in that state since the 1970s, according to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.
If you’re in a high-risk area, keep an eye on your pets and children to ensure they stay away from these dangerous amphibians!Whizzco