Fall is the time of year when there seems to be numerous plant seeds and awns.
awn: noun, Botany
a bristlelike appendage of a plant, especially on the glumes of grasses.
such appendages collectively, as those forming the beard of wheat, barley, etc.
any similar bristle.
Plants, weeds, and grasses are drying up and the seeds are more prominent. Fall is also a time of year when many dogs are out hunting, which means that they are running through the tall grasses and weeds. Many of these seeds and awns can cause problems when they become caught in part of the body. Some of the more common areas that we have seen plant seeds get stuck are the feet and eyes, but they can also become lodged in the ears, and under the skin anywhere on the body. When these seeds get lodged under the skin, in the feet, or in the ears, they cause a painful swelling and infection. Because dogs that are running through the dried grasses and weeds have their faces right down by where these seeds are, it is very easy for seeds to get stuck is in the eye(s). When plant seeds gets caught in the eye, they rub on the cornea and can cause a painful corneal ulcer.
We recently removed these 11 plant seeds from under the third eyelid of a dog when he developed a corneal ulcer after he had been hunting! All 11 seeds were all in one eye! This illustrates the seasonal dangers for dogs and cats. Ouch!