Lady, the Toad Sucking Cocker Spaniel

"Toad licking" has been well documented around the world with secretions from many species causing intense hallucinations. In this 2006 NPR podcast, they tell the story of a poor cocker spaniel who became addicted to toad. "We noticed Lady (the cocker) spending an awful lot of time down by the pond in our backyard. Late one night after I'd put the dogs out, Lady wouldn't come in. She finally staggered over to me from the cattails. She looked up at me, leaned her head over and opened her mouth like she was going to throw up, and out plopped this disgusting toad." Increasingly Lady would return from the backyard highly disoriented, "running into walls and barking at non-existent things."

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Lady hits rock bottom

Interestingly while the family took steps to curb the toad abuse, they clearly did not feel it necessary to stop it altogether. In the winter Lady suffered a troubling withdrawal during which she refused to come back in from outside, hunting in vain for one last taste of toad. At one point the mother even tries to help Lady get her fix during an early morning bathroom trip so that she can go back to bed.

Ultimately, Lady builds up her tolerance to toad and/or gets used to the effects, and simply "lies in the driveway watching anthills." Good times.

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Toad is a hell of a drug...

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This is also big news in Australia, were dogs frequently ingest the invasive cane toad which secrete powerful bufotoxins when stressed. There have been reports of toad addiction, although the toxin frequently proves fatal.

This cane toad, nicknamed "Spew", spent 40 minutes in a dogs stomach before vets managed to get the pup to spit him up.

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Meet Spew

Special thanks to Pat King for sending us yet another heart warming story.

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Ahh, that was a good laugh.

By Mike Spear (not verified) on 13 Jun 2008 #permalink

That was toadully awesome. I mean frogeddaboudit!

I am truly honored to have been mentioned at all, but in truth it was my husband Tom who is responsible for this heartwarming tale of frog-doggery. As always, we get a huge laugh out of your bizarre yet charming sense of humor. ;-)