Help quickly please! Centipede or millipede? Dog may have been bitten!
My dog was acting rather strangely, laying down and rubbing his mouth on the floor, much like when you give a dog spicey food. Anyways I looked over and I saw this brown bug crawling accross the floor. Immeditely I captured it and took these pictures. As I understand a millipede is not harmful, but a centipede is, and I’d like to know what this is. When it crawled it was like its legs were moving like waves. and was roughly an inch, to an inch and a half long. Please help me out on this, I’m afraid if my dog did get bitten by this. To possibly help out more I live in Arizona near a mountain preserve, so there’s wild landscapping.

Dear AzS,
You have sent in a photo of a millipede, and though they do not bite, according to Hogue: “If disturbed, a millipede will coil up like a watch sprint; many species also exude fluids that stain the skin and have a repugnant odor that has been dcompared to iodine, quinine, or chlorine. The fluids commonly are benzoquinones and other chemicals that evaporate rapidly and act as repellents against predators. Certain millipedes produce cyanide fumes.” I would venture to guess your dog just got a bad taste in his mouth.

Update: (01/20/2008) Millipede IDs
11/12/04 . AZ Colactis sp. (Callipodida: Schizopetalidae)
Rowland Shelley
North Carolina State Museum of Natural Science

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