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woodcutter's avatar

Has anyone had a problem with their dogs eating cicadas?

Asked by woodcutter (16249 points ) September 7th, 2012

For those who don’t know, a cicada is one of the homeliest insects on the planet and they produce that annoying grinding buzzing sound in concert, for hours on end during the summer. Our dogs have been plucking them off the side of the house for sport and a snack. Aside from keeping the dogs in the house there isn’t much to do because they really seem to like them. Maybe they hate the noise too.

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24 Answers

Trillian's avatar

It’s a good source of protein. They’ll never be able to eat them all, but you can let them try.

gailcalled's avatar

Dogs: cicacas = humans: lobsters. Homeliness is not a reliable descriptor for an edible or poisonous substance.

A friend found one of these in her garden this morning. Scary large green worm. It was almost 5” long. She was hoping that one of the neighborhood dogs would scarf it down.

woodcutter's avatar

Every time I go out there I see one of them catch one so I’m not sure if this is a bumper crop of cicadas or they are just lucky. I was concerned there may be something nasty to dogs in them.

WestRiverrat's avatar

Cicadas are good for human consumption too. There is even a cookbook out that is devoted just to cicada recipes.

woodcutter's avatar

Oh god. We would shrink our food bill this time around but mum isn’t going for it!

elbanditoroso's avatar

I would only worry if the cicadas began to consume the dog.

woodcutter's avatar

@elbanditoroso We have large dogs so they are gonna win. It is entertaining watching them chase the bugs. Different, them moving so fast sometime catching the same one several times before they get a solid bite on it. It sounds like they are munching on pop corn.

elbanditoroso's avatar

@woodcutter – many years ago, I had an old shepherd mutt that loved to chase and pounce on cicadas or crickets in general. He would sniff them, but them in his mouth, but then tend to spit them out.

Gross. Insect with dog saliva.

gailcalled's avatar

I have fewer here now than in the past in eastern central NYS, farm country, lots of acreage with no buildings on them.

@woodcutter: Where are you?

wundayatta's avatar

I have not had this problem, but wouldn’t mind having it. Next cicada season, can I borrow your dog? Can it climb trees? Because a lot of our cicadas sing from the trees. Outside my windows. I have a recording.

woodcutter's avatar

@gailcalled SW OK.

@wundayatta No not a tree climber because I watched her try. They just get the ones on the house. Not really putting a dent in them yet. They seem to just die off on their own because I have noticed a lot on the ground covered with ants. So if the dogs get those they will have ant covered cicadas, yum.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Four dogs here: No cicadas eaten this past summer by any of them.

woodcutter's avatar

We are expecting a cold front this week (yay) so we’ll see if that shuts them up. They seem to be the most annoying when it’s hot out. Or it might be them that makes it seem hotter.

Bellatrix's avatar

I had a cat who loved eating cicadas. He would crunch them up and his little eyes would water with the effort. They were obviously quite the delicacy for him. It was only a problem when he brought them in and accidentally let them go and they flew off around the house. Ugh. There is a story I posted about that happening on day here on Fluther somewhere.

My dogs – no.

Brian1946's avatar

I never have.

Given your details, I’d say it’s a win-win situation for you: free pest control and reduced dog-food expenses. ;-)

El_Cadejo's avatar

Cicadas taste delicious if you sautee them with some butter and garlic. When I was in culinary school it was during the 17 year cicada so we harvested a bunch and made a really awesome meal out of it.

Trillian's avatar

I respectfully submit that a sonar using, insect eating mammal would, by definition, think that winged insects taste good.

Just sayin’

jaytkay's avatar

During the northern Illinois 17 year cicada emergence in 1990, friends in the suburbs had to get out their snow shovels to clear their driveways. One had a dog who ate cicadas til she literally fell over on her side to sleep it off. I could never see that dog again without laughing.

When they came out again in 2007, I was driving through a forest preserve with my car windows CLOSED and talking on the phone, and I had to hang up because the cicadas were too loud.

woodcutter's avatar

@Bellatrix Hah! A couple evenings ago I managed to catch two together. The trick is to quickly pinch their wing tips and hold them. Boy do they make a loud racket. I got to the front door and inside all four cats and both dogs heard me coming in with them. My wife screamed “Oh no you didn’t!” Yep I did. It was a circus watching all the cats bouncing all over the place trying to get them. But in the end it was the bigger dogs that muscled their way and got them. Poor cats. A 90 lb. dog scrambling through the house on the bug grab was hilarious. Girl really likes her cicadas I guess.

My wife was concerned they would make the dogs sick but maybe she was really wanting me to stop letting them fly around in the house.

jaytkay's avatar

@woodcutter That is AWESOME.

I have heard the bugs all my life, but I have never had any idea how they make the noise. I want to see them up close!

woodcutter's avatar

http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/bugs/cicada/ Some pretty cool information. No other bug looks as weird as this imho

gailcalled's avatar

@woodcutter: Ya think? Check out this 5” caterpillar (it does become a pretty, albeit very large, butterfly.)

Cecropia caterpillar

Coloma's avatar

Haha…..I thought you were going to say eating cat litter/poo. Um, count yourself lucky if your dog only eats Cicadas, although not a happy event for the poor Cicada.
I just saw the finniest picture the other day of a dog, a german shorthair type with a sign around his neck that said ” Zero days of not eating the cat litter. lolol

woodcutter's avatar

Those dog kisses with the cat litter breath can be rough.

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