The Effect of Black Mold on Pets
We all know that black mold can be dangerous to humans even after just a short exposure. The fact that there are several thousand companies dedicated to mold inspection and remediation around the country should clue you in as to how dangerous this kind of fungus actually is and how important it is to act as soon as possible to prevent any more health issues from cropping up. While we are very much aware of the effect that this type of mold have on us, how it affects our pets may be something new for us to think about. Our pets are usually left at home for hours on end, more exposed to this kind of dangerous mold than we are. Aside from this, our pets are usually smaller than us which could make them more vulnerable. There has been some research done about the effect of black mold on farm animals, but very few about its effect on pets.
Mold infestation symptoms in pets may be different from the manifestations that are found in people. Although there are also some similarities, one of the main reasons why the symptoms may be difficult to notice in pets is because they do not have the ability to complain about their ailments and there is a vast difference in how pets express themselves compared to humans. Their well being and health will rely mainly on how observant we are to their behavior and actions. The following manifestations (especially when the symptoms are together not just singly) should alert you that there is something seriously wrong with your pet.
A runny nose and sneezing could be signs of an allergic reaction to black mold or a cold. To be sure, you should visit your vet and air your concerns about molds. Most likely, the vet will recommend that you go to mold experts to have a mold inspection and testing done for your home. Both symptoms can be a cause of alarm if there are also some members of your family in your home who are suffering from hay fever-like symptoms because generally, the virus that causes colds in humans do not affect canines and other animals the same way. In cats, however, there are a lot of cases when it has happened.
Unexplainable nosebleeds may also be attributed to a fungal infection or exposure to black mold. Dogs and other pets rarely have nosebleeds and when they do, it is usually due to trauma or an accident. A sudden, unexplainable bleed can be because your pet has been exposed to black mold. Internal bleeding in the joints of your pet (especially mammals) can also be part of mold infestation symptoms. You will not be able to see the actual bleeding but you might notice that your pet is limping or may not be able to put pressure on his joints.
Rashes in pets can be a sign of a lot of ailments. When combined with one or more of the above symptoms, you should bring your pet to the vet and have him checked. The rash should be visible in areas where the fur is not so thick, such as the belly and the armpits in most mammals.
Lethargy and loss of appetite may also be caused by any number of pet ailments but when combined with one or more of the symptoms listed here, can be dangerous for your pet.
Some pets tremble when they are exposed to cold or when they are bathed; for others (like the Chihuahua), trembling is something that can naturally occur. Aside from these instances, if your pet trembles without any due cause, you should have him checked.
If the vet believes your pet has mold infestation symptoms, he will surely recommend an inspection, not only for the good of your pet but also for the people who live in the house. Once the suspicion is confirmed, you should make arrangements for mold remediation or mold removal for the sake of all who live in the house. Prolonged and extensive exposure to black mold can lead to devastating conditions and side effects not only for your pet but also for you and your loved ones. The danger with molds of any type is that they are very covert and can be thriving in your home for years, exposing you and the other members of your household to their toxicity without you being the wiser. This is why regular inspection by a reliable mold remediation company is a must. The earlier any mold colony is found and removed, the lower the risk of developing dangerous symptoms and conditions related to exposure.
While the symptoms stated above are pretty clear, it is not a good idea to diagnose or treat the pet on your own unless you are a licensed vet and know what you are doing. The best thing that you can do is to have your house and property inspected for mold and to bring your pet to the vet for a diagnosis.