In my backyard I have started to discover more and more, what appears to be "Wolf Spiders" - I know there are many many species of these, so for reference, my location is Western Australia.

I have also being seeing the tell-tale sign of small little burrows in the ground for awhile now, which, seems to be what they do.

Here is a pic of one I managed to capture (in a glass pasta sauce jar for size reference), the spiders are about 25mm - 50mm big I'd say.

enter image description here

I have two small dogs (5-6kgs in weight), and because there seemed to be so many of them out there lately (just tonight I seen 5 in the grass in one particular area where the dogs were near, and the one I caught I found on the pavement, so 6 in total), I decided to check if they were harmful.

From my research it seems they aren't very harmful to humans, but I am getting conflicting information on how dangerous they are to dogs - I have struggled to find a vet or other equal credible source's input on the matter, but from what I have found, the more seemingly credible sources claims they can be fatal to dogs (particularly smaller ones) within 1 hour after being bitten.


Queensland Museum

Fauna Facts

The below sources seem to imply they aren't as dangerous as the above sources claim, but perhaps some species of Wolf Spiders vary in how dangerous they are, given there are many, and different locations may have different species, even though the poster was asking about Australian Wolf Spiders?


Reddit - A few questions regarding Australian Wolf spiders and pets

Another Reddit source seems to indicate that they aren't overly harmful, but multiple people have described them as "The wolf spider is big, hairy and scary looking", or "Wolf spiders, though rather large and fearsome" - as you can see in the picture, that doesn't seem to resemble these - unless of course, they're going to grow much larger?

So my question is, is there a more definitive source, particularly an Australian based one, that is reliable on how dangerous these spiders are to dogs, specifically small ones?

  • 2
    If you're not sure if this is really a wolf spider, you might want to ask over at Biology.SE if they can identify it. They have a species-identification tag over there.
    – Elmy
    Apr 15, 2022 at 18:59
  • 1
    Thanks Elmy. Pretty confident it is, but will ask to make sure.
    – Brett
    Apr 15, 2022 at 20:12

1 Answer 1


I think my dog was just bitten by a wolf spider. I also saw the article stating the bite can be fatal within an hour, I called the vet and they have advised the main issue would be pain so pain relief may be required. Luckily he seems fine for the moment but will keep an eye on him. I am also in WA and it was the same as the one you have pictured. Hopefully this will help put your mind at ease a bit.

However if your doggos are bitten and seem to have any reaction please ensure you contact a vet :)

  • 1
    Welcome to Pets! Please take the tour to see how this site works, it only takes a minute. I do hope that your dog is fine. Unfortunately your answer is quite vague and doesn't really answer the question. Can you please edit your post once everything is ok again? It would be of tremendous help if you could add any first hand experience and advice your vet gave you. thanks a lot.
    – Elmy
    May 12, 2022 at 18:06

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