The Goat Spot Forum banner
1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
595 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
There are two types of toxic plants. Poisonous and toxic.
Poisonous plants, if ingested in any quantity will surely kill rapidly if there is not intervention. Rhody and mountain laurel, camas, poison hemlock and Japonica fall under this category.

Toxic plants require prolonged exposure. These are things like bracken fern and lupine.

When in doubt any ingestion of any questionable plant should be treated as if it were poison. Even with intervention the prognosis is not good for some of the poisonous plants. Anyone who owns goats would be smart to remove ornamental plants so the goats won't get into them.

Goats are notoriously opportunistic about eating things they shouldn't.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
200 Posts
sweetgoatmama said:
There are two types of toxic plants. Poisonous and toxic.
Poisonous plants, if ingested in any quantity will surely kill rapidly if there is not intervention. Rhody and mountain laurel, camas, poison hemlock and Japonica fall under this category.

Toxic plants require prolonged exposure. These are things like bracken fern and lupine.

When in doubt any ingestion of any questionable plant should be treated as if it were poison. Even with intervention the prognosis is not good for some of the poisonous plants. Anyone who owns goats would be smart to remove ornamental plants so the goats won't get into them.

Goats are notoriously opportunistic about eating things they shouldn't.
There is not consistent use of the terminology in literature. Depending upon the circles in which you travel, a poison can either be something that is "highly toxic" or can be the broader term to include chemical agents as well as biological agents, with "toxins" referring to the biological agents and "toxicants" to refer to the chemical agents.

This latter terminology is most consistent in the materials I have found in sources specific to veterinary and agricultural sciences ... and by these definitions, Rhododendron, Mountain Laurel, etc. are all "toxic", and more specifically are said to be acutely toxic under the right dosage. Bracken fern would then be a "chronic toxin" with "normal exposure".

I like this terminology as it correctly illustrates that toxicity is dose dependent and often time dependent and so there is a continuum of exposure and effect and in fact, the same substance can be both acutely toxic and chronically toxic ... but depends upon dose and time. Consider, for example, the fool-hardy teenager suffering from acute alcohol "poisoning" vice the person suffering liver disease from chronic alcohol abuse.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
Is there a one good field reference that covers all goat poisonous/toxic plants in America?
That is an excellent question. Latin nomenclature in labeling and listing plants would be most helpful. I have read that bracken fern and hemlock are toxic to goats but photographs in books reveal the plants are not the same ones we call bracken and hemlock in these parts. What we have as bracken fern is Pterimidium aquilinum and Hemlock is Tsuga canadensis.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
That is an excellent question. Latin nomenclature in labeling and listing plants would be most helpful. I have read that bracken fern and hemlock are toxic to goats but photographs in books reveal the plants are not the same ones we call bracken and hemlock in these parts. What we have as bracken fern is Pterimidium aquilinum and Hemlock is Tsuga canadensis.
Is there a one good field reference that covers all goat poisonous/toxic plants in America?
Cornell University Department of Animal Science
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top