How Dangerous Are Wolf Spiders?

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Spiders top the list when it comes to some of the most fearsome insects in the animal kingdom. Many people fear spiders, and they can be the cause of a lot of nightmares if you’re someone who finds them scary. However, most spiders are relatively harmless and can even help keep your home free of other dangerous pests like mosquitoes. 

Regardless of how beneficial they can be, spiders still have a bad reputation because of their looks. Nowhere is this more apparent than with the wolf spider. Wolf spiders can grow up to two inches long and have very prominent mouthparts that can be incredibly intimidating. Luckily, these spiders aren’t usually harmful, but it’s best to get as much information about them as you can. 

In this article, you’ll learn: 

  • Are Wolf Spiders Dangerous to Humans? 
  • Are Wolf Spiders Dangerous to Any Pets? 
  • Are Wolf Spiders Poisonous?
  • Do Wolf Spiders Sting or Bite? 
  • Do Wolf Spiders Pose Any Health Risk?
Reviewed By:
Ed Spicer

Ed has been working in the pest control industry for years helping 1,000's of homeowners navigate the world of insect and rodent management. He manages Pest Strategies now helping homeowners around the world!

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    Are Wolf Spiders Dangerous to Humans? 

    Wolf spiders are venomous, but the good news is that their venom isn’t strong enough to hurt a human. However, because of their size, their bite can be very painful after it happens. If you get bit by a wolf spider, you will know it, but their venom is too mild to present issues like numbness or nerve damage like some other spiders, such as brown recluse spiders and black widow spiders. 

    One thing that you should consider, though, is whether or not you might get an allergic reaction from a wolf spider bite. Most people will get an itchy red bump from a bite, but it will usually disappear within a few days. You may not even be able to tell the difference between a wolf spider bite and a mosquito bite. If you’re prone to allergic reactions from spider bites, a wolf spider bite could cause serious issues. If you notice symptoms like a red line extending out from the bite, swelling in your face, difficulty breathing, or swelling in the bite area, these are signs that you could need immediate medical attention. 

    Are Wolf Spiders Dangerous to Any Pets? 

    While wolf spiders aren’t usually dangerous to humans, they could potentially be very dangerous for your pets. Luckily, your pets have an instinct to stay away from venomous spiders. A wolf spider bite is more likely to occur in places like basements or garages, and if your pet regularly roots around in those areas, they could likely get bitten by a wolf spider or any number of other insects. Wolf spiders won’t specifically hunt animals that are larger than them, but if they’re backed into a corner, it’s not uncommon for them to bite. 

    If you suspect that a wolf spider has bitten your pet, it’s best to get them medical attention as soon as possible. This is especially true if they’re small in size or young. Puppies and kittens can be very susceptible to even the mildest venom, and the wolf spider can deliver the right amount to be potentially harmful. If your backyard has a lot of vegetation or leaf litter, it could be a perfect hiding place for wolf spiders that could bite your pet. 

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    Are Wolf Spiders Poisonous?

    Wolf spiders have venom, but they’re not poisonous. The amount of venom that they emit when they bite will usually only be enough to make the area around the bite swell up. Generally, this will only result in mild pain and possibly some swelling, but nothing more serious than that. Your biggest risk when getting bit by one of these spiders is that you might be allergic to the mild venom. However, this kind of reaction is relatively rare and won’t usually require medical help from a hospital or doctor.

    Wolf spiders have venom, but they’re not poisonous. The amount of venom that they emit when they bite will usually only be enough to make the area around the bite swell up

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    Do Wolf Spiders Sting or Bite?

    Wolf spiders may not be harmful to humans, but they absolutely can bite if they’re provoked or surprised in any way. In North America, there are around 240 species of wolf spiders, and all of them have similar characteristics. They’re usually dark brown and will have two large eyes above a row of four small eyes and two more on the sides of their head. However, their most distinctive feature is their mouthparts which are very large in relation to the rest of their head. This is why they can bite and produce a relatively painful feeling when they do. 

    For the most part, you will only get bit by a wolf spider if you happen to sit or step on one. They like to hide in places around your yard like wood piles, grassy areas, or even houseplants and will mostly keep to themselves. However, if you happen to come across one, it’s usually in your best interest to leave it alone and let it go about its business.  


    Do Wolf Spiders Pose Any Health Risk?

    While wolf spiders don’t pose any significant health risk from the amount of venom they produce, some people will be allergic to it, and it can cause anaphylaxis in those individuals. Because of this, if you’re noticing that you have a spider problem in your house or your yard, it’s best to call in pest control services to get rid of wolf spiders and mitigate your risk of that allergic reaction. Any kind of spider infestation is a problem, and spider control can help keep your home safe for you or anyone else who might possibly be allergic to these arachnids


    Protect Your Home From Wolf Spiders

    If you’ve been noticing wolf spiders in or around your home, calling a pest control professional is a good idea. They’ll be able to find all the ways that they’re gaining access to the house and close off those areas so they can’t come back. This is especially important if you have small animals in the house that could possibly be harmed by the venom that a wolf spider can put out. A pest control technician can also advise you on how you can protect your home from other common spiders and keep the ones that are more harmful outside where they belong. 

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