The Phoenix-based Pibbles & Fam Bam Rescue suffered loss and tragedy recently after a storm which unbeknownst to them, brought parts of a Red Giant Castor from a neighbor’s yard into their property.
Two dogs, Wilfred and Grace, consumed these plant parts and succumbed to their illness. For more on this story, checkout this KAKE report.
Pibbles & Fam Bam Rescue now want to spread the word so this doesn’t happen to anyone else. They write on their Facebook page:
It is with the heaviest heart that we inform you that Grace joined Wilfred at Rainbow Bridge this afternoon. These two were both rescued and adopted by the founders (Wilfred was 2 and Grace was 5) and they became fast friends, best friends. The founders will never understand why this tragedy happened (Wilfred ate castor oil seeds from our neighbor’s trees that blew over during the Monday night storm, while Grace ate his vomit) to the most perfect babies. All we know is we will make it our mission to educate people about dog-poisonous trees and plants so this NEVER happens again.
According to the ASPCA, castor beans are very toxic: oral irritation, burning of mouth and throat, increase in thirst, vomiting, diarrhea, kidney failure, convulsions. Access to ornamental plants or pruned foliage most common in poisonings. Ricin is a highly toxic component that inhibits protein synthesis; ingestion of as little as one ounce of seeds can be lethal. Signs typically develop 12 to 48 hours after ingestion, and include loss of appetite, excessive thirst, weakness, colic, trembling, sweating, loss of coordination, difficulty breathing, progressive central nervous system depression, and fever. As syndrome progresses, bloody diarrhea may occur, and convulsions and coma can precede death.
The Veterinary Medicine Library web page on castor beans says, “All parts of the plants are toxic, but most dangerous are the seeds. The most susceptible animal species include cattle, horses, sheep, pigs, fowl, rabbits and other small animals. Seeds ingested at 0.2% of body weight have caused toxicosis in cattle and 0.01% of body weight was toxic to horses.”