Is Wisteria Poisonous To Sheep

Be cautious with the plants you choose to throw over the livestock fence when spring-cleaning the property. Tim Schnakenberg, an agronomy specialist with the University of Missouri Extension, claims that some houseplants and shrubs have toxins in the leaves, branches, or blooms that can be lethal to animals, including pets and livestock.

There are a number of landscaping plants that are poisonous to animals, and homeowners need to be aware of this. Japanese yews are most likely the most dangerous.

Schakenberg noted that there have been numerous instances of cow mortality attributable to the animals consuming Japanese yew trimmings. Trimmings were once buried in a gully, but the next spring, they germinated and thrived, killing a number of the farmer’s livestock.

He cautions farmhouse owners against tossing dead houseplants or clipped bushes over the back fence or into areas where livestock can access them.

Goats are becoming more and more common in southwest Missouri, and they can be dangerous because they’ll eat practically anything put in front of them. For instance, rhubarb can produce hypocalcemia, or a low calcium condition, which in turn can lead to goats’ kidneys failing.

People must ensure that any trimmings or dying plants are safely burned or disposed of.

When cattle consumes enough of the azalea, rhododendrons, black locust, boxwood, buckeye, elderberry, Virginia creeper, and wisteria, it can result in significant disease or death.

Wilted tree leaves from the prunus family, which includes cherry and plum, release cyanide gas when eaten, which causes ruminants to asphyxiate.

Certain houseplants can be poisonous especially to curious pets that like to gnaw on objects. These animals might wind up eating and chewing on plant materials.

The Chinese evergreen, calla lily, dieffenbachia, croton, and elephant ear are among the houseplants that might kill a pet if they are consumed, according to Schnakenberg.

Additionally, there are some flowers that you shouldn’t throw at livestock through the fence. Caladiums, cardinal flowers, and castor bean plants, for instance, harm livestock, according to Schnakenberg.

Will sheep consume toxic plants?

Sue Weaver’s image Poisonous weeds in the pasture could be the cause of your sheep’s illness if you don’t know why they’re sick.

Sharon DeJonge submitted the query for this week and says, “We are getting a couple lambs and we live in North Florida. In our field, there are lots of weeds. Do any of them pose a hazardous risk to us?

Sharon, there may be plants growing on your property that are poisonous to cattle no matter where you live in North America. To determine whether the poisonous plants will be an issue, you might ask yourself a few questions:

Are your sheep enticed to consume the lethal plants?

Sheep may not necessarily be drawn to poisonous plants. Animals who have experience in the pasture appear to know intuitively which plants they may safely eat, and many dangerous plants taste awful to them. Sheep (and us goats) won’t consume them unless we are starving to death and must consume those plants to survive.

2. Do you have any concerns about your sheep eating enough of the dangerous plants?

Many “Because poisonous plants are simply toxic, they won’t actually harm us unless we consume them in large quantities or over an extended period of time.

3. Will your sheep eat the plant’s toxic component?

Sometimes a plant only contains harmful parts, such as its roots, withered leaves, or seeds. In some cases, a plant may only be harmful at specific stages of its development, therefore sheep may not consume the plant during such seasons.

4. Are your sheep resistant to the substances found in a specific plant?

There are several species-specific poisonous plants. Some people, like my mother, enjoy the boiled milkweed shoots, but lambs and goats are poisoned by the plant. Including myself and my friends, goats adore poke, yet sheep are poisoned by it. The poison of one species might be the delectable meal of another!

You should be aware of the dangerous or poisonous plants that are present in your sheep’s pasture and how to safely zap them. Your cooperative-extension agent is the best person to ask for information. He or she is knowledgeable about local plant species and how to manage them.

Additionally, you may find a ton of helpful information online, including web pages that can identify wild plants. However, always exercise caution when obtaining information online and ensure the author is an expert in their field. Here are a few that I suggest:

  • A useful resource for you is Florida A&M’s color bulletin, “Plants Dangerous to Goats and Other Livestock in the Southeast,” as most plants that are hazardous or poisonous to goats are also poisonous to sheep.
  • The website for Cornell University’s Department of Animal Science’s publication Plants Poisonous to Livestock is another excellent resource, especially for readers from various parts of the country or who keep additional types of livestock and farm animals. To view a list of dangerous plants, click on each species. You can then click on each plant’s scientific name to view images of it.
  • A wealth of resources about dangerous plants and plant toxins can be found on the Maryland Small Ruminant Page’s poisonous plants and plant toxins page.

If one of your flock’s sheep becomes ill, you should keep plant poisoning in mind because you probably won’t be able to completely eradicate all poisonous or toxic plants from the surroundings. Look for these signs if you believe one of your animals has been poisoned:

Are there any trees that sheep can’t eat?

Although you’ve probably gone to great lengths to ensure that your pasture is covered with flora that is beneficial to sheep, the truth is that the lines between grazing areas and landscaped areas frequently get hazy. In a pasture, it’s not unusual for sheep to come across some plants they shouldn’t eat.


Typically, iris plants are grown for decorative purposes. Irises in the wild are not likely to flourish in your pastures. However, if these plants are forming along fence lines, you must get rid of them because your sheep will happily eat on them. When taken in excessive quantities by sheep, they can disturb the digestive system.


Holly might not be a severe problem in little doses. However, when consumed in large quantities, holly berries, in particular, can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and confusion.


Almost all animals are poisoned by rhubarb leaves (including humans, believe it or not). Because of this, we choose to consume the plant’s stalks. In sheep, the leaves have been known to result in symptoms like salivation, convulsions, and even death.

Cruciferous Vegetables

While sheep may tolerate the occasional nibble of broccoli, avoid feeding them too many cruciferous veggies (including things like mustard). When consumed in excess, these foods can lead to photosensitization, vomiting, goiter, and other health problems.


It attracts butterflies, however if you have sheep, you shouldn’t keep it around. Overeating can cause symptoms like drooling, appetite loss, respiratory problems, seizures, and, sadly, death.

St. John’s Wort

When St. John’s wort is consumed, it can be harmful to humans as well as sheep. Additionally, it may result in skin irritation, including peeling, sores, and blisters.

When ingested, it may take up to three weeks for symptoms to manifest! As a result, this type of poisoning is challenging to identify.


Nightshades are toxic to all animals, including sheep. Even though they generally won’t eat it, a ripe tomato or pepper won’t harm your sheep. Tomato plants, pepper plants, potato plants, and eggplant plants all require that the plant portions be kept a safe distance away.


Yew bushes are beloved for their green, needle-like foliage and are frequently cultivated as landscaping plants. However, if you have sheep, be cautious when growing yews as it will swiftly kill them if they even take a bite. Rarely do sheep who have been poisoned by yew recover.


When taken in excessive quantities, both acorns and the young, tender oak tree shoots can result in severe poisoning. Anorexia, increased thirst, and gastroenteritis are among the symptoms.

Morning Glory

You can cultivate the lovely vining morning glory plant in your garden. If you have sheep, skip it. Pigs and sheep are only two of the many livestock animals that might become poisoned by the hallucinogenic seeds.

English Ivy

Any form of livestock, including sheep, is harmful to English ivy. It may result in extreme thirst, constipation, and fast breathing. A severe poisoning may put your pet into a coma.

Mountain Laurel

Sheep are toxic to mountain laurel and its relatives, the azalea and rhododendron. Smaller doses of these plants can produce salivation, anorexia, lethargy, and uncoordinated behavior, while larger doses can be fatal.

Wild Cherry

Any veterinarian will tell you that one of the most frequent causes of cattle poisoning is wild cherry, chances are. Usually, sheep are exposed when tree limbs and leaves blow into a field. Although the wood itself is not poisonous, the cyanide that the leaves release makes them so.

This plant’s toxicity is challenging to cure. In fact, poisoning typically occurs so swiftly that you don’t have time to react. Your pet could experience spasms, stutter a little bit, and eventually fall and pass away.

What plants are harmful to sheep?

Although most plants are helpful, some can be harmful to both human and animal life. There are roughly 100 hazardous plants in Ohio, and some of them cause the yearly fatalities of domestic animals. More cases of toxicosis (plant poisoning) in animals than in people have been documented. Although precise figures are unavailable, it is believed that a few thousand animals pass away from plant toxicosis every year in the United States.

In Ohio, where homes are being built everywhere, the rural/urban interface is rapidly expanding. Many farm neighbors are unfamiliar with the plants that are hazardous and many of them are found in our home landscapes. Homeowners who live close to farms or pastures shouldn’t dump their yard garbage there without first getting permission from the farmer or landowner.

Common plants that are harmful to farm animals include the following:

The iris, which is cultivated as an ornamental plant, contains an irritant in the leaves or root stalks that, if consumed by animals in large enough quantities, can cause gastroenteritis.

The common holly plant, a favorite decorative in yards around homes, produces berries that, when consumed in excessive quantities by animals, can result in vomiting, diarrhea, and lethargy.

Pigs, lambs, cattle, and goats are particularly vulnerable to poisoning from excessive dosages of the morning glory’s hallucinogenic seeds.

Fresh or dried forms of this plant are poisonous, causing rough hair coats, sluggish demeanors, and mucous discharge in ruminant animals such as sheep, cattle, and goats. High body temperatures, neck swelling, and breathing difficulties are possible symptoms. Similar to swine, monogastrics can exhibit anorexia and lack of coordination.

The hazardous component of rhubarb plants is the flat leaf blade, which in most classes of livestock results in staggering, excessive salivation, convulsions, and death.

English ivy toxicosis, which manifests as local irritation, increased salivation, nausea, agitation, difficult breathing, severe diarrhea, thirst, and coma, has been observed in all species of livestock.

Wild cherry is likely the plant that causes livestock poisoning the most frequently. The most frequent instances of exposure are when limbs are blown over or are cut and thrown into a gated area. Only wilted leaves are poisonous because they release cyanide. Wilted cherry tree leaves are a source of worry, dilation of the pupils, falling over, spasms, rolling of the eyes, tongue sticking out, and loss of sensation. After that, the animal goes quiet, bloats, and dies shortly after eating.

Poisonous alkaloids are present in this common, needle-like shrub that is grown around the house. Yew poisoning can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, dilated pupils, respiratory problems, weakness, exhaustion, collapse, coma, convulsions, and eventually death. Seldom do people recover from yew poisoning.

Young shoots and acorns can be quite poisonous, especially if consumed in large quantities. Cattle, sheep, horses, and pigs will exhibit anorexia, diarrheal constipation, gastroenteritis, thirst, and frequent urination.

Wild or native Mountain For ruminants, laurel, rhododendron, and azalea are all regarded as poisonous and extremely toxic. Anorexia, excessive salivation, moist eyes, nose, and mouth, fatigue, a sluggish heartbeat, low blood pressure, clumsiness, dullness, and sadness are all signs of poisoning. Coma is followed by death.

Editor’s note: Regularly searching for and removing poisonous plants from pastures and along fencelines will pay off in the long term.

modified from a piece by:

Are animals poisoned by wisteria?

Because wisteria doesn’t have a bad taste, dogs may eat deadly amounts of it.

Wisterias are absolutely gorgeous, with cascades of flowing purple blossoms. However, their leaves and blooms can also be dangerous in excessive numbers, and their seeds (and seed pods) are extremely poisonous to dogs.

Even worse, the results take time to manifest. Wisteria also doesn’t taste unpleasant, making it simple for dogs to consume excessive amounts before you realize there is a problem.

What plants are harmful to animals?

A common trait of many dangerous plants is an unpleasant taste, which usually deters livestock from grazing on them. Some species only become poisonous at specific growth stages. For instance, the common cocklebur is most poisonous just before developing two leaves. Cocklebur is extremely harmful to pigs at this growth stage, but it can also hurt cattle and sheep.

Toxic plants should be thoroughly inspected in the grazing area if animal poisoning is suspected. In the pasture’s open parts, jimsonweed, snow on the mountain, croton, and wild indigo are frequently encountered plants. Species including white snakeroot, bracken fern, pokeweed, and buckeye are frequently seen in gloomy locations. Water and poison hemlock, black nightshade, and horsetail can grow in moist regions along creek or ditch banks. In farmed areas, poisonous plants including cocklebur, jimsonweed, milkweed, pigweed, and johnsongrass can be found. Along fence and hedgerow rows, wild cherry, milkweed, and pokeweed are to be found.

Raising Sheep With Other Species

Goats and hens can be kept with sheep, but you must be cautious in your handling of the situation. No other species’ grain or mineral supplements should be accessible to sheep.

The grain will not only contain minerals that, if consumed in excess, will sicken your sheep, but it will also likely contain copper, which, if consumed in excess, can kill sheep. Keep your sheep’s access to all feed supplies strictly prohibited.

Feeding Poisonous Plants

Fortunately, there aren’t many plants that are poisonous to sheep across the majority of the US. Some weeds, such ragwort, bracken, and capewood, are bad for your sheep and can be found growing in many pastures.

But it’s strictly forbidden to let sheep graze through a garden area. The majority of common garden weeds can be fed to sheep, however they cannot consume poisonous plants like foxglove, rhododendrons, oleander, and others.

Don’t toss the grass clippings over the fence for your sheep to consume unless you can identify every plant in your garden with certainty and are certain they are not hazardous to sheep.

Failing to Pay Attention

It’s crucial to make sure you take out every last bit of the thread or twine before letting your sheep graze on hay that has been bagged with string or twine. It can kill your sheep and result in serious obstructions.

Not Providing Enough Pasture

The quantity of pasture you will need to feed your sheep will depend on the soil’s quality, the amount of rain you receive, the type of forage that is growing, and how you manage the pasture.

Additionally, plant growth is not constant throughout the year. Depending on where you live, an acre of grassland in the spring and fall can support more sheep than an acre in the dry season.

To determine how much pasture is needed, you’ll need to keep an eye on your own pasture and flock. However, you may make the most of your pasture by only allowing your sheep to graze a tiny portion of it at a time.

You can confine your sheep to specific areas of land using a technique called “rotational grazing,” while other areas of the land regenerate on their own.