Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Identifying bug

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Question
Bug
Bug  
Wondering if you can identify this bug my dog liked to eat them and roll on them and I want to make sure they're safe. Thank you for your time. Dianne

Answer
This is a small milkweed bug.   Latin name Lygaeus kalmii, and they are perfectly harmless unless you eat them. The insect feeds on the pods of Milkweed Plants. It normally feeds on the pods, stems, and seeds of the milkweed. As this plant seems to be declining locally in the face of human progress, the insect will no doubt become increasingly rare.  

If a milkweed bug is eating milkweed, it will get a nasty taste since milkweed sap is nasty-tasting.  Usually animals spit them out.  If you eat too many, you can get VERY sick since milkweed sap is toxic to humans.  Not sure if it is also toxic to dogs.

If the milkweed bug is eating a non-toxic plant, then no problem.  

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Sue Kayton

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Silkworm expert. Have raised them as a hobby for 20 years. I do not identify unknown insects.

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