The Toad versus Mr Frankie

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The Toad versus Mr Frankie

Summer is in full swing and apart from an increase in sunburn I have noticed a dramatic increase in the dreaded Aussie Icon…the toad.

A couple of weeks ago we were sitting down to dinner enjoying the air conditioning when we noticed our beloved Jack Russell Frankie absent from the usual eye balling and table drooling exercise.

Upon searching for our missing dog we found him having a seizure and frothing at the mouth near our front door.

What followed was like a skit from the Benny Hill Show….we all raced to the car, our son was screaming from the backseat, hubby was telling Frankie to ‘stay away from the light’ and I was driving like a mad woman possessed to the nearest 24 hour emergency vet clinic. (I am now shortlisted for this year’s Gold Coast 600!)

Our destination was the Animal Emergency Vet Clinic at Varsity and the wonderful staff went straight to work on our very hairy second son Frankie.  We were sent home tearfully waiting the call that would be great news or the worst news ever.

Thankfully our Frankie survived the night, although our wallet took a bit of a beating and he lives to tell another tale. Our good neighbours two nights later experienced the very same thing with their Tenterfield Terrier.

I took it upon myself to google the mysterious toad and try to ‘Toad proof” our house.
These are the tips that I learned.
  1. No food outside. If you feed your pets outside bring in unfinished food before dark.
  2. Limit buckets and containers filled with water. Toads lay their eggs in or around the water’s edge. Toad eggs are black and resemble a long string. Think the very elegant string of pearls formation!
  3. Keep outside lights off as much as possible. Toads are attracted to the light to prey on bugs and insects around the lights.
  4. If your pet is unlucky enough to stumble across this warty devil then time is of the essence. Wipe your pets’ gums with a wet cloth to remove the excess toxins. The ole hose down the mouth trick is usually not advised as they can ingest even more of the poison. Finally, get your pet to a clinic ASAP.

My life has changed dramatically now. At night when our Mr Frankie wants to do his ‘Secret Dogs Business’ I am always two meters in front of him with a huge torch scouring our yard like an extra from the X Files.

He’s definitely worth it though!

Good Luck to you and your furry friends!

by Linda Suffredini

The Toad versus Mr Frankie
First National Palm Beach
Corner of 6th Avenue & Cypress Terrace, Palm Beach, Queensland 4221
Phone: 07 5559 9600