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Dog Fennel - Is it poisonous?

Posted by Bonheur 8b FL (My Page) on
Mon, Jul 4, 05 at 11:19

The man I buy hay from has offered to give me (for free) 2 large rolls of hay because it has some dog fennel in it. Is this safe? He thinks it is. My horses won't touch the dog fennel that's growing in part of their pasture, but if it's mixed in with good quality hay, I know they'll probably just eat it all. Does anyone know if dog fennel is actually toxic, or is it safe in small amounts? I can't find anything in my Google searches. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Dog Fennel - Is it poisonous?

There seems to be little information on this plant on the net, the botanical name is "Anthemis cotula" That might help your search. The plant appears on many lists of poisonous plants, but little or no information follows it. I saw one reference to it causing contact dermatitis in humans... not sure if horses would be affected or not...

RE: Dog Fennel - More

ohhh... I just found this:

"Mayweed - Anthemis cotula Introduced from Europe, mayweed is also called stinking chamomile because of the pungent odor of the fern-like leaves. The daisy flowers bloom from May to October, with the dome-shaped yellow centers persisting after the white petals have fallen. This plant causes severe dermatitis in some people and is troublesome in pastures where it is shunned by livestock because of the acrid taste. It is known to repel insects. "

RE: Dog Fennel - Is it poisonous?

Thanks, Annaneaves! I just did a search on anthemis cotula, saw a photo & realized that's not what we call dog fennel down here! I found a photo that looks like the local dog fennel, & it is eupatorium capillofolium. I'll start doing searches on it. Thanks for helping me discover that dog fennel refers to at least two different plants!

RE: Dog Fennel - Is it poisonous?

Thanks again, Annaneaves! You may have saved my horses' lives! I've searched for 2 days & found nothing - but that's how I found this awesome gardenweb forum. I was going to go ahead & get the hay for my horses (since my hay man thought it'd be ok), when I saw you answered my post. Now I know dog fennel is highly toxic to the liver & can even be fatal to humans who eat meat or milk from a cow who's consumed it! You're an angel - Bless you!

Therese :)

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