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as far north as the Tampa Bay area.

Help avoid Bufo toads from being attracted to your yard

by picking up dog food bowls off the ground. They are

attracted to the food and food residue. Bufo’s also like to

lounge in water bowls and may leave enough toxins on the

rim so keep those on the inside as well.

Symptoms of poisoning from a bufo marinus include

salivation, vocalizing and pawing at the mouth, dark red

gums, stiff walk, and difficulty breathing. This can progress to

seizures or death. The severity of the poisoning depends on

the size of the dog. The smaller the dog, the more poison per

pound they take in. If your dog is poisoned, STAY CALM.

Rinse your dog’s mouth out with a hose IMMEDIATELY for at

least five minutes. Run the water through the side of the

mouth and towards the front of their nose while keeping

the head down to avoid drowning your dog. Some

veterinarians recommend massaging the gums as well to

make sure all the toxin is removed. The smaller the pet or

the larger the toad, the greater there is a risk of toxicity.

Transport your dog to the veterinarian quickly. Remember

most poisoning happens at night so make sure you know

where the closest emergency vet clinic is in relation to your


If you find live Bufo Marinus in your yard they can be

humanely destroyed by freezing. Just make sure you know

the difference between this non-native toad and native toads

such as the Southern Toad. Southern toads are prevalent and

beneficial in the area. An adult Southern Toad is never larger

than 4 inches and has ridges or knobs on its head. For more

information on identifying toads and frogs in Florida, please

check out the University of Florida website at



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The marine toad (Bufo Marinus) is a brown to grayishbrown

toad which is not native to Florida. Adult toads can

reach 6-9 inches in length and have a creamy yellow belly and

deeply-pitted parotid glands extending down the sides. These

glands contain a milky-white substance commonly called

"bufotoxin," which the toad uses as a defense against

predators. This poison can cause irritation in humans and

animals, particularly when the toxin comes in contact with

the eyes or mucus membranes. For small pets and wild

animals, this toxin can be lethal.

While the Bufo is more common on the east coast of

Florida it is sometimes found in Lee and Collier Counties and

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