If you have a fur baby, you need to know about the lawn chemicals being used in the United States that are causing cancer in dogs.
Recently we learned about another very scary thing dogs can get into that can kill them. Click here to read about xylitol (an artificial sweetener you may have in your house right now.)
Cancer in Dogs Caused By Weed Killer
We all love our dogs so much that we would never, ever want anything bad to happen to them. Unfortunately just playing in your backyard can cause cancer in your dog if you use certain lawn chemicals. The chemical is known as 2,4-D.
“2,4-D is an herbicide that kills plants by changing the way certain cells grow. 2,4-D comes in several chemical forms, including salts, esters, and an acid form.” (source)
The National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Epidemiology and Biostatistics Program found that dogs whose owners used the herbicide 2,4-D on their lawns 4 times/year or more were twice as likely to develop Canine Malignant Lymphoma as dogs whose owners did not use 2,4-D.
Don’t use it yourself? That’s awesome, but sadly the risk doesn’t necessarily go away.
If your dogs get into other yards where the chemical is used researchers say it will show in their urine. The same goes for parks where dogs play. They absorb it by breathing it in, through their skin, or eating/drinking it.
How to Minimize the Chance of Cancer in Dogs
1. Keep dogs away from your lawn while you are applying a weed killer to your yard.
2. Don’t let them outside when the ground is still wet with the spray.
3. Follow all label directions.
4. Check with your city or town about whether they use products with 2,4-D on the grass in their dog parks. If they do, you may want to ask what their schedule is and stay away for 24 hours afterward.
Products That Can Cause Dog Cancer
I wanted to add a short list of products that use this cancer-causing chemical. Unfortunately, when I went to the EPA site that shares that kind of information, I was met with more than I bargained for.
There were 12 pages of products! Oh gosh. I’m sharing the link with you, but I would simply look at the ingredients on the bottle for 2,4-D.
Another Quick Warning
You may be shocked when I tell you that the companies that produce these products will often create websites that say the exact opposite. Expect to see articles online that write things like “it’s a myth” that these weed killers cause cancer in dogs.
You probably won’t know whether it’s a site that’s being run by a brand or organization.
Do your own homework as to whether you trust that information, but be cautious. It’s amazing to me that they can even do such a thing, but I know it’s a common practice by all sorts of companies – not only chemical companies.
More Information About Weed Killers and Cancer in Dogs
You can call the National Pesticide Information Center, Monday – Friday, from 8 AM to midnight. That number is 1-800-858-7378.
The NPIC provides honest, science-based answers to all questions about pesticides.
Also, Animal Poison Control is available to answer questions at (888) 426-4435.
Might This Warning Affect Your Fur Baby?
It’s scary for dog parents, I know. But knowledge is the best way to deal with a health threat. (PS: What’s your dog’s name? I’m obsessed with the names people use for their pets. They can be so quirky, and cute sometimes!)