Toxic plants for horses
Health can be defined as that complete state of well-being that allows us to enjoy an optimal quality of life, not only to us humans, but also to animals, and of course, this state of health is of special importance to those animals that we live with or with which we create a special bond.
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Sometimes the disease state comes from alterations in the proper physiology of a living organism, but on many other occasions, what compromises health is an exogenous agent, which is not always a pathogenic microorganism, since in some occasions the The cause of the disease is a substance that is potentially toxic.
Our horse is also liable to become ill from the accidental ingestion of a harmful substance, so in this article we show you which plants are toxic to horses .
Ingestion of toxic plants for horses
Although we maintain the immediate surroundings of our horse in the best possible conditions, at the time of going for walks our animal can expose itself to multiple hazards that have serious consequences for health .
In this case we speak of berries, plants and herbs that our horse can easily access and which are dangerous not only because they may be poisonous, but also because this animal has a delicate digestive system , and the ingestion of certain substances can cause colic and complications. It is important to review the area where the horse usually grazes to identify those plants that are toxic.
List of toxic plants for horses
Let’s see below what are the toxic plants for horses that are also easily found in meadows and pastures:
- Acacia-negra: Causes anorexia, muscle weakness, depression and colic.
- Acorns: They are poisonous only in large quantities, although they can cause colic, constipation, abdominal pain and kidney damage.
- Oleander: It presents a great toxicity and can cause the cardiac arrest of the horse.
- Horsetail: It is toxic because it destroys vitamin B in the horse’s body.
- Hemlock: It is a highly toxic plant as it contains a deadly poison that affects horses, other animals and humans.
- St. John’s Wort: It is toxic to the horse’s liver and causes specific liver damage resulting in hypersensitivity to sunlight that causes wounds in the non-pigmented areas of the skin. Strong intoxication can even become deadly.
- Blondness: Blondness intoxication can manifest itself through vomiting and diarrhea, but it can get to affect the heart, and in this case it is deadly.
- Rhododendron: This plant contains a toxic substance called grayanotoxin that can cause death within a few hours of its ingestion.
- Senecio Jacobaea: It is a very poisonous plant that specifically affects the liver of the horse until causing the progressive destruction of this important vital organ.
- Yew: Yew causes poisoning as lethal as it is fast, there being a case where the animal died still with the presence of leaves in its buccal cavity.
- Algae: They are in the puddles and their intoxication causes tremors, difficulty coordinating movements and hypersensitivity, the horse can die in a few hours.
- Belladonna: Belladonna poisoning causes cardiac arrhythmias, dilated pupils, muscle tremors, blindness, and seizures. It’s deadly.
- Bell: The bell (Digitalis purpurea) is a plant that has an important action on the heart so when affecting an organ of vital importance can cause the death of the horse.
- Cardo: To manifest intoxication by this plant (Carduus carpetanus) the horse must have consumed large quantities for a minimum of 30 days. Intoxication can be analyzed through facial paralysis and edema, the cause of animal death.
- Broccoli and cauliflower: They are not poisonous vegetables but can cause gas and colic in the delicate digestive tract of the horse, causing intestinal changes.
- Fennel: It is highly toxic and causes irreversible damage to the horse’s liver.
- Bryonia: Causes diarrhea, convulsions, sweating, and increased urination.
- Sudanese herb: Affects the horse’s respiratory system to death from respiratory paralysis.
Other plants and toxic feed for horses
Previously we have seen the main toxic plants for horses , however, I may mention a few more, as well as other foods that should stay away from this animal:
- Dryopteris filix-mas
- Push Button
- Senecio jacobaea
- Glechoma hederacea
- Viola String
- Red clover
As we see there are many substances that can negatively affect the horse , so it is important to know these plant species and prevent the animal to ingest them.
Learn to recognize poisoning
If your horse has been intoxicated with some harmful plant you will probably manifest some of the following symptoms:
- Loss of balance
- Excessive salivation
- Loss of appetite
- Skin rashes
- Abdominal cramps
- Diarrhea or constipation
If you notice any of the symptoms mentioned above on your horse, you should contact the veterinarian urgently .
How to avoid ingesting toxic plants
In order to avoid ingesting toxic plants for horses, we must provide our animal with an environment where he can graze in complete safety and take extreme precautions when we move him to the pasture.
The following advice will be very useful:
- Learn to identify plants that are toxic to horses
- Remove these plants from the horse’s environment, start them by the roots and cover the holes with salt in order not to grow again
- Extreme caution if you identify trees with berries, since most are poisonous
- Provide you with a secure and fenced enclosure
Although identifying plants when they are not yet flowering is a truly complex task, you should think that it is the most effective way to protect your horse’s health.