Last week we heard from a reader in Mumbai who is suspicious about the death of his pet dog. He said that his dog died and the next day he found a peculiar worm on his terrace. He believes said worm might be responsible for his dogs passing.
Here is what the worm looks like:
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As you can see, the worm is tan, small (we used the bricks of the terrace for comparison), and moves in an interesting fashion.
In fact, we are able to identify this worm on its movement pattern alone. It is an inchworm! Despite having the word “worm” in their name, inchworms are actually the larval form of the geometer moth. This means they are technically caterpillars, not worms!
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Inchworms, or cankerworms, and can appear in several different shades of brown and green. Inchworms inhabit and eat the foliage of many different trees, including apple, elm, oak, and maple. While the visual damage these worms can cause is severe, the trees are often able to survive an infestation of inchworms without experiencing permanent damage.
Since inchworms feast on foliage, not flesh, we do not see how this worm could have caused the death of our reader’s dog. In a very bizarre scenario, the worm and the dog’s passing could be related, but we don’t think it is very likely or plausible. Our reader could take his dead dog to the veterinary to further investigate if he feels it is necessary.
In summary, we heard from a reader who was concerned that a worm he found on his terrace could be related to the death of his pet dog. We identified this worm as an inchworm, but we don’t believe it is responsible for the dog’s fatality. We are very sorry to hear that our reader has lost his dog, and we offer our condolences during this time of grief.