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Thread: Reminder - Canada Wild Rye

  1. #1
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    Exclamation Reminder - Canada Wild Rye

    For those that aren't aware, these bastards are both Canada Wild Rye, which killed my last 2 springers. If you end up in it, be SURE to give your hunting buddy a tailgate exam. Skin, eyes, nose, ears, toes....all over.
    See this. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PaFl0Z8kH_c
    It doesn't discriminate. And if it works its way into the chest cavity, let me know. I'll say a few prayers for your dog & hope for a miracle.
    cwr small.jpg
    Last edited by A5 Sweet 16; 10-08-2019 at 04:37 PM.
    "Most pheasants in South Dakota don't react too well to #5s." -The Hunt for Red Rooster

  2. #2
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    "Most pheasants in South Dakota don't react too well to #5s." -The Hunt for Red Rooster

  3. #3
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    I have hunted eastern SD for 35 years and never paid attention to these potential killers. Now that I have read up on the dangers to our dogs, I will keep my eyes open and be selective on where the dog goes. Brent how often do you encounter Canada Wild Rye when hunting?

    Mike

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by marn View Post
    Brent how often do you encounter Canada Wild Rye when hunting?
    Mike, I'll let you know after we get into the season a bit. So far this season, though, I'm 1 for 1. I really never paid attention to it either until Buzz died in December (confirmed pyothorax). Walt died in 2013 (age 11), but nobody knew why. I just chalked it up to his ticker gave out because he'd lived a hard life. But his symptoms & death were almost identical to Buzz's, so I'm sure they both died of pyothorax. Also, the place I took Leah Sunday.....where I picked the grass for the picture above....I do know that I hunted there in 2012, the season before Walt died. I remember it well, because it had just been plowed up & replanted a couple years previous & I thought it would be some nice lighter cover to hit on residents-only weekend in mid/late afternoon. So at that time, assuming they used Canada wild rye in the seed mix as a cover plant, it was probably VERY prevalent then. This past Sunday it wasn't like it was the main grass in the area, but I'd still say it was all over the place once you got back in there a ways. It doesn't die off, yielding to other plants, as quickly as some people think it does.

    For what it's worth, though, I was right back in 2012. It was perfect cover for early season. And as luck would have it, the adjacent corn had been picked just prior to resident's weekend. That was a really dry summer/fall. Shot 3 easily on Saturday & then on Sunday, 1 there & 2 at a spot right down the road. Chances are, since I was successful there early, I probably went back another time or 2 that season.

    I'll admit to being super gun-shy about the stuff after losing 2 dogs to it. I'll never look at a weed the same again. But I'm just trying to make sure people are aware of it - not make them lunatics about it. Unfortunately, I'm close to the latter.
    "Most pheasants in South Dakota don't react too well to #5s." -The Hunt for Red Rooster

  5. #5
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    Mike...the PM feature on this site won't let me upload a pic from computer, so I'll put it here. The WPA where I picked the CWR Sunday is just a few miles north of Colman. You've probably hunted it. I won't go back. Circled below.
    cwr wpa.png
    Last edited by A5 Sweet 16; 10-08-2019 at 04:50 PM.
    "Most pheasants in South Dakota don't react too well to #5s." -The Hunt for Red Rooster

  6. #6
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    This is great information and a timely reminder.
    Thanks for posting.
    Canada Wild Rye is not the only grass that is dangerous, foxtail barley and cheatgrass are also a problem. Probably others too.
    Symptoms overlap with many other illnesses like tick borne and can come on fairly suddenly and can be acute - elevated temp, lethargic, no interest in food.
    Vets that deal with city dogs and cats may not see many cases of grass awn infection so its wise to ask.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakotasj View Post
    Symptoms overlap with many other illnesses like tick borne and can come on fairly suddenly and can be acute - elevated temp, lethargic, no interest in food.
    Yes, just so people know what happened in Buzz's case....

    February 2018, developed a lump low on his side behind the ribs (common w/ mean seeds). Scheduled surgery.
    A day or 2 before surgery, the lump/abscess burst. Surgery still took place. They removed all they could & sent it to Ames for inspection. No foreign matter found.
    Vet said maybe the foreign material washed out. Maybe not.
    Buzz recovers from surgery & is fine.

    Fast forward to about November 20, 2018, just before Thanksgiving. Buzz seems "just not quite himself" one day. Had a slight fever. Gave him an aspirin.
    Next day the fever's gone & he seems fine. Maybe not 100%, but about 99.

    Hunted the weekend following Thanksgiving. He still seemed about 99%. It was almost imperceptible, but he just wasn't quite 100%. That following week, he got back to 100%.
    Hunted Dec. 1 & he seemed fine. 100%.
    Hunted Dec. 2 (Sunday) & he got tired real quick & acted like something was wrong. I decided I'd take the morning off Monday & take him in. That evening he just acted tired.
    Called vet early Monday Dec. 3 & made an appointment for 10:00 that morning. Buzz seemed sleepy.
    Took the daughter to school at 7:30 & when I got home, Buzz was lying on the floor. Had almost no strength whatsoever. Breathing very short & rapid.
    I put him in the truck & took off. Called the vet & told them to expect us & that it was an emergency.
    Took 10 minutes to get to the vet. 10 minutes after we got to the vet, Buzz was dead.

    So yes, pyothorax (the worst result of mean seeds, but not the only result) can be difficult to see & acts quickly.
    Whether the abscess in February was responsible for his death in December, we don't know for sure, but it could've been.
    The vet said in February that the seed/material could've migrated elsewhere before the abscess burst.
    But when he died, the vet said the seed that killed him was most likely inhaled & moved through his lung into the chest cavity.

    In the pic below, the bottom dog is healthy. Black chest cavity because the lungs are full of air, with the big white blob in the lower part being the heart.
    The upper dog is Buzz. Can't even see his heart & the whole chest cavity turned out white because the lungs couldn't get air. The whole cavity was filled w/ puss. Acute respiratory distress set in & killed him. Quickly.
    chest xray small.jpg
    Last edited by A5 Sweet 16; 10-08-2019 at 04:43 PM.
    "Most pheasants in South Dakota don't react too well to #5s." -The Hunt for Red Rooster

  8. #8
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    Man thats a hard read. I never want to go thru that with any of my pups or see any others go thru it either.
    Mike

  9. #9
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    Those X-ray images are eye opening to see the difference in how that infection affected your dog Buzz versus the normal chest X-ray. Thanks for sharing your story, all the reminders to complete tailgate checks and to make sure we all pay attention to our dogs and take action if they don't seem right.

  10. #10
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