Surprising Ways You Can Get Exposed to Poison Ivy

Posted on January 11, 2022 at 4:00 PM by Tom Swegle

Image depicting poison ivy rash and how to get poison ivy

How Does Poison Ivy Spread?

Most of us have experienced an itchy, annoying poison ivy rash at least once in our life. And we've all heard the old saying "leaves of three, leave it be", but even if we stick to the saying and don't touch the plant, there are still many other ways you can get exposed to poison ivy. Check out our list of ways you can get that dreaded poison ivy rash that may surprise you!

Mowing Your Lawn

You may not think twice about mowing your lawn or whacking your weeds (aside from the fact that you don't want to do it!). But these routine chores can be more dangerous than you may think. As you mow, everything that is cut spews into the air and can come into contact with your eyes, nose, mouth, or even a small cut or scrape on your body. Since every part of the poison ivy plant is dangerous (even if it's dead), stray leaves, stems, or roots can spew directly at you. This can lead to a painful rash in some very sensitive areas. Even more dangerous, when inhaled it can cause an extremely painful, even sometimes fatal, rash to the lining of your lungs. Be diligent when mowing your lawn and if you see any plants, take them out by the root wearing the proper protective equipment. 

Your Campfire

Similar to mowing your lawn, inhaling smoke laced with poison ivy can have serious consequences. If you're camping in the winter or summer and looking for some nice kindling to get your fire started, be careful what you pick up. You know to avoid poison ivy plants, but in the winter they can be hard to spot without their leaves. In the summer, a stray root or stem may have gotten mixed in with some of the brush you pick. Be cautious about what you choose to build your fire with and know what poison ivy looks like when it is dead.

Dead Poision Ivy


Urushiol, which makes poison ivy dangerous, only stays on your skin for around 30 minutes, but can last up to 5 YEARS on certain surfaces!! Clothing, shoes, camping gear, and so much more can cling onto the toxic substance, transferring it to your skin when you touch it. Give these things a good wash in warm soapy water to remove any urushiol that may be hanging on. If you get urushiol on your skin, use Zanfel poison ivy treatment. It works to effectively remove urushiol from your skin by binding with the toxin to create an aggregated cluster, then moves it to the surface of the skin where it can quickly and effectively be washed away with water. To guarantee you never get a bothersome rash from touching an object, use Outdoor Joe's!

Your Furry Friend

The good news: most of the time our furry pet friends won't get a rash from coming into contact with poison ivy as their layer of fur protects their skin from the urushiol oil! The bad news: this oil sticks to their fur, and when we pet our pooch, it can transfer to our skin. This can be especially concerning since we usually don't know our pet ran through some poison ivy while playing outside. Then, when we pet our dog and then touch our face or other parts of our body, we spread the rash all over ourselves.

Never Worry About Poison Ivy Again!

Outdoor Joe's Poison Ivy Pro gives you an immunity to poison ivy so you never have to worry about the many ways you can come into contact with the troublesome plant. This oral solution is natural and safe for all ages! Get yours today!