What you see is NOT a tail.
Until I was witness to this biological function today, I never thought much about toads at all. When I spotted this cute, little 1 1/2 inch critter, I just assumed tiny "frog". When it puffed up, I then assumed it was about to vocalize. Instead, squeezed out what you see in the photo.
That drove me to the Web. The tiny frog is not a frog. It is a tiny toad. There are also quite a few of brown "toad turds" - which eventually ended up being double the size of what you see in the photo - on the webbing of our deck chairs. Yuck!!! Who would have thought? The chairs got hosed off two days ago; so this guy must be a prolific pooper to deposit that much excrement in just two days. Double Yuck!!!
Upon watching the toad poop, my first fear was salmonella where the dogs play: https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/zoonoses/salmonella/amphibian_reptilian_questions_and_answers.htm
After reading more about toads, I discovered that toads are also poisonous for pets http://www.vetstreet.com/our-pet-experts/beware-toads-that-can-poison-cats-and-dogs Even sniffing or licking one can harm a dog. Because my dogs are so super small, I am extra concerned.
I find Nature fascinating. However, there are times (like this one) when I don't like to have it where I live. I stop being a Nature lover when it poses a health risk to humans or pets. So what started out as a photo opt of one of Nature's critters has ended up being "I hope it quickly moves on without incident" Since we're well into mid October and have had our first freeze, I really hope toad hibernation comes soon & he goes somewhere far away from our yard.
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