Lawn Care Pesticides and Other Chemical Effects on your Dog

Lawn Care Pesticides, Insecticides, Herbicides, and Other Chemicals Effects on Your Dog


Spring is here, summer is around the corner, and there is nothing as awesome as enjoying a sunny day on a lush green open space, where you and your dog can enjoy nature. But often the most lush lawns and gardens have been doused with pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, and other chemicals that neither you nor your dog should be exposed to.

The need to have a beautiful lawn and garden results in 78 million US households using harmful chemicals each year. The war on weeds results in people purchasing chemical sprays, foams, pellets, and hiring professional companies to make their yards perfect, resulting in over 90 million chemicals applied to lawns each year! Yikes. These practices expose your whole family, especially kids and dogs, to very harmful chemicals, which scientific studies have linked to various health issues, including cancer. As a matter of fact, over the past 20 years there has been mounting scientific evidence that shows a clear link between lawn treatments and cancer in dogs. The problem with a beautiful chemically treated lawn, according to scientific studies, is there are huge risks that dog parents are unaware of and that chemical manufacturers pushing the products ignore.

For example, a study conducted at Purdue Veterinary School found 76% of dogs tested had herbicide residues in their urine following home lawn chemical application and that certain garden and lawn chemicals are linked to canine bladder cancer.

As more dog parents become aware of these issues, they seek out professional lawn care services thinking that they might be safer. But research shows otherwise. The weed professional simply applies the same deleterious chemicals. In a study conducted at Tufts School of Veterinary Medicine, scientists found that when professionally applied, exposure to lawn pesticides increases the risk of cancer (lymphoma) by 70% in dogs.

And for those who don’t use pesticides themselves, you’ll be shocked to learn that your neighbors who use chemicals impact the lawns around them as herbicides can travel up to 50 feet away from application site!

So how long should you wait until sprayed grass is safe again? Until it’s dry? A day after chemical application? 3 days? A week? This study reveals that even 8 days after application, residues on dog fur were 14 times higher than normal!

Study Link (Detection of herbicides in the urine of pet dogs following home lawn application).

Study Link (Detection of herbicides in the urine of pet dogs following home lawn chemical application)

One of the biggest problems that rarely gets any thought is that chemicals sprayed outside don’t stay outside.

Dogs who spend any amount of time on chemically treated lawns ingest, inhale and lick off the chemicals they pick up in the yard. Additionally, when your dog gets back inside the home, they track those carcinogens on their paws and fur, exposing the entire household to unknown amounts of hazardous chemicals. The chemicals are tracked on the floors and furniture, or come into direct contact with family by simply petting or holding your fur baby.

The worst part is many people have no idea that keeping a beautiful lawn affected their entire family’s health!

When you know better, you can do better.

The best way to have a healthy family and maintain a beautiful lawn is to select from the many hundreds of safe and equally effective products (and companies) that are free of these harmful chemicals.

And just in case you take your dog on long walks and cannot be certain they weren’t exposed…

It is always a great idea to make your own wet wipes with soap and water and clean their little paws after each walk. When you understand how your dogs digestive system works, you realize how quick your dog can be at risk. You should also consider boosting your dogs immune system with Kos Tonics Dog Supplement loaded with all the omegas, fish oil and vitamin E to help them fend off anything that comes their way. We have an easy to use dog food topper spray and dog supplement drops.

If you are like us and want to read the research, we’ve compiled a list of relevant articles and scientific journals linking an increase in canine cancer to lawn treatments:

  • Nishioka MG, Burkholder HM, Brinkman MC, Lewis RG. Distribution of 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic Acid in Floor Dust throughout Homes Following Homeowner and Commercial Lawn Applications: Quantitative Effects of Children, Pets, and Shoes. Environmental Science & Technology. 1999 33 (9), 1359-65. Link
  • Biki B. Takashima-Uebelhoer, Lisa G. Barber, Sofija E. Zagarins, Elizabeth Procter-Gray, Audra L. Gollenberg, Antony S. Moore, and Elizabeth R. Bertone-Johnson. Household Chemical Exposures and the Risk of Canine Malignant Lymphoma, a Model for Human Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Environ Res. 2012 Jan: 112: 171-176.
  • Hayes HM, Tarone RE, Cantor KP, et al. Case-Control Study of Canine Malignant Lymphoma: Positive Association With Dog Owner’s Use of 2, 4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic Acid Herbicides. JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute 1991;83, pp 1226–31. Link
  • ThinkAboutNow. Studies Link Canine Cancers to Lawn Chemicals. ThinkAboutNow. Website. Link
  • Reiff JS. Animal sentinels for environmental and public health. Public Health Reports. 2011;126(Suppl 1): 50-57.  Link
  • Thörn Å, Gustavsson P, Sadigh J, et al. Mortality and cancer incidence among Swedish lumberjacks exposed to phenoxy herbicides. Occupational and Environmental Health. 2000; 57:718-20. Link
  • Hoar, S.K., A. Blair, F.F. Holmes, C.D. Boysen, R.J. Robel, R. Hoover, J.F. Fraumeni, Jr. (1986). Agricultural Herbicide Use and Risk of Lymphoma and Soft-Tissue Sarcoma, JAMA 256:9:1141-1147.
  • Wagner, Sheldon L. (1980). Clinical Toxicology of Agricultural Chemicals. Environmental Health Sciences Center, Oregon State Univ., Corvallis, OR.
  • Gosselin, R.E., R.P. Smith, H.C. Hodge (1984). Clinical Toxicology of Commercial Products, Williams and Wilkins, Baltimore, MD.
  • Canadian Centre for Toxicology (1987). Expert Panel Report on Carcinogenicity of 2,4-D, Ontario Pesticide Advisory Committee of the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
  • Schlop, R.N., M.H. Hardy, and M.T. Goldberg. 1990. Comparison of the activity of topically applied pesticides and the herbicide 2,4-D in two short-term in vivo assays of genotoxicity in the mouse Fundamentals of Applied Toxicology. 15:666-675
  • Zahm, S.H. Weisenburger, D.D., Babbitt, P.A. 1990. A Case-control Study of Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and the Herbicide 2,4- dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) in Eastern Nebraska. Epidemeology 1:349-356.
  • Howard, Philip H. Handbook of Environmental Fate and Exposure Data for Organic Chemicals. Lewis Publishers Chelsea, Michigan.
  • Pesticide Information Project. Extension Toxicology Network. 2,4-D. Website. 9/93. Link
  • Reynolds PM, Reif JS, Ramsdell HS, Tessar JD. April-May 1994. Canine Exposure to Herbicide-Treated Lawns and Urinary Excretion of 2,4-D Acid. Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention. 3(3):233-237. Link
  • Kaneene JB, Miller R. 1999. Reanalysis of 2,4-D Use and the Occurrence of Canine Malignant Lymphoma. Veterinary and Human Toxicology, Vol. 41, No. 2:164170. Link
  • Cottam J. Dogs and Exposure to Herbicide 2,4-DJust Ottawa. Website. Link
  • Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data. The Myth of Cancer in Dogs. 2, Website. Link
  • Takashima-Uebelhoer BB, Barber LG, Zagarins SE, et al. Household Chemical Exposures and the Risk of Canine Malignant Lymphoma, a Model for Human Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Environmental Research. 2012;112:171-176.  Link
  • Glickman LT, Raghavan M, Knapp DW, Bonney PL, Dawson MH. Herbicide exposure and the risk of transitional cell carcinoma of the urinary bladder in Scottish Terriers. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association. 2004;224:1290–7. Link
  • Knapp DW, Peer WA, Conteh A, et al.  Detection of herbicides in the urine of pet dogs following home lawn chemical application. The Science of the Total Environment. 2013 Jul 1;456-457:34-41. Link   
  • Berson S. Their dogs kept getting cancer and dying. All signs pointed to a local park. The Herald Sun. April 10, 2018. Link
  • Gómez-Barroso D, García-Pérez J, Lopez-Abente G, et al. Agricultural crop exposure and risk of childhood cancer: new findings from a case-control study in Spain. International Journal of Health Geographics. 2016; 15:18. Link
  • Malagoli C, Costanzini S, Heck JE, et al. Passive exposure to agricultural pesticides and risk of childhood leukemia in an Italian community. International Journal of Hygiene and Public Health. 2016; 219:742-748. Link
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