Don't poison your horse!
This weed is covered by the 1959 Weeds Act, amended by the Ragwort Control Act 2003 which means you may be issued with an ORDER to control the weed on your property. Obviously as it is toxic to your horse, it makes sense to keep the risk to a minimum by keeping it under control. Each ragwort plant can produce up to 120,000 seeds so it makes sense to deal with them before they seed. The picture shows a young plant to help you identify them and get stuck in early, it's easier and they won't have a chance to multiply.
Remember to dispose of the plants that you dig out carefully, ensuring your horse doesn’t have access to them. We use the Finalyte Weeder to get the whole root out quickly and easily as ragwort can regenerate from root fragments – I'll say it again, starting early makes it an easy job which you can do in stages rather than panicking when the Ragwort is in flower.
The symptoms of ragwort poisoning are of chronic liver disease however, acute liver disease can occur:
- Abdominal pain (colic)
- Diarrhoea, Constipation and Straining
- Skin Photosensitisation
- Head Pressing
- Apparent Blindness
- Collapse, Coma, Death
- Jaundice is not a common feature
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