The National Park Service is warning people to refrain from licking — yes, I said licking — the Sonoran desert toad, a.k.a. the Colorado river toad.
Um — that would have never even crossed my mind. But, thanks for putting that picture in my head.
You also probably shouldn’t kiss the toad. And, in fact, picking it up might be dangerous as well.
I see a bad TikTok challenge in our future. Just say “No,” people!
According to the National Park Service, this
scary ass warty toad is “one of the largest toads found in North America, measuring nearly 7 inches.”
Why is the NPS putting this public service announcement about licking a toad into the social media universe?
Apparently, they secrete a substance that can be pretty toxic to humans and even some animals that decide to make a meal of — or play with — this froggy.
(Yes, I know there’s a difference between toads and frogs. Just go with it.)
It can make you sick if you handle the frog or get the poison in your mouth. As we say with most things you come across in a national park, whether it be a banana slug, unfamiliar mushroom, or a large toad with glowing eyes in the dead of night, please refrain from licking.National Park Service
This toxic toad has the potential to kill a full-grown dog, so keep those canines away!!
Symptoms of intoxication are excessive salivation, irregular heartbeat and gait, and pawing at the mouth. If a dog displays any of these symptoms, use a garden hose to rinse its mouth from back to front and consult a veterinarian.Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
So, if you stumble across one of these Sonora desert toads, just take a picture. Don’t pick it up.
And, for Goodness Sakes, do NOT lick it.