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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 12:09 AM Thread Starter
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Mean seeds

Here's something everyone who huts with a dog needs to know about. It's a plant called foxtail. There are a bunch of different grasses under that name. Do a Google search on mean seeds and foxtail and you'll get a lot to think about. I know of several people who have lost dogs because of this type of grass. Unfortunately I've seen a lot of this stuff on state game lands around Pittsburgh the last couple years. There are whole fields of it mixed in with the sorghum. Especially on the Hillman State park game lands. I assume it's gaining a foothold in all game lands. This stuff is very dangerous for dogs. I've spoken to the game commission about this and they didn't know a thing about it till I brought it up. I don't know if they are going to do what is necessary to try to get rid of it or not. But the thing is if a hunter who doesn't know about this has a dog that gets sick because of foxtail the dog could die before it's diagnosed. What happens is that the individual seeds or awns have a small fish hook end and microscopic reverse spines that allow the seed to go forward but not back. It can enter a dog through the skin, eyes, nose, ears, or even genitals. It will travel through tissue leaving infection in it's wake. Seeds are very small and hard to see on x-ray or ultra sound. Take a look at the info on line and everyone should be contacting the game commission to demand they eradicate this stuff. I've also seen it on a hunting preserve yesterday. Check it out!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 12:19 AM
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Re: Mean seeds

I know of a guy who had a real nice male beagle who had a seed go through his rib cage and into his lung. It's unbelievable what those little seeds can do.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 01:53 AM
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Re: Mean seeds


i am pretty sure our eastern variety of foxtail is different than the western variety that causes this problem.

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 02:11 AM
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Re: Mean seeds

Do you have any picture or seed of this foxtail your talking about thats on SGL??? or what all SGL did you see it on?? how do you know its a foxtail??
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Mean seeds

I'm not a botanist but I've looked at the seeds closely and the seed heads and what I see is foxtail. If you Google mean seeds or foxtail you will see plenty of pics. There are many varieties and the western stuff is becoming more prevalent in the east. Must be mixed in with the seed for other stuff like sorghum that is used in food plots. Just look at the online info and be careful. I keep my dogs out of the stuff as much as possible and check them over real real good when we're done hunting. Saw it on the Hillman game lands (doesn't have a number)and other game lands around Burgettstown, south and west of Pittsburgh. Can't speak for any other. I'm given to understand that all varieties are harmful. If someone has more knowledge about it I'd like to be assured that eastern varieties are not harmful or that it's not spreading from the west. I know it is highly invasive.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 09:56 AM
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Re: Mean seeds

It has been around for a long time. I had a friend with a pointer that inhaled it and it got into his lungs. Dog was saved but after a long bout on antibiotics. I am pretty sure it is from Canada to Georgia and pretty far West.
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