What is Yarrow Poisoning?
Yarrow can be found in North America, Asia, and Europe. As a perennial herb, it has healing properties that people find beneficial. However, for canines who like to graze on and eat plants, the effects can be toxic.
Ingestion of the plant can cause your pet to become quite ill. If you notice that your dog is vomiting or is experiencing signs of diarrhea, it is time to get in touch with your veterinarian. Your beloved pet will be relying on you to stay calm and make the right medical decision to get to the veterinary specialist as soon as possible. Therapy in the form of intravenous may be needed if your dog is suffering from dehydration due to the gastrointestinal effects.
Yarrow, also called milfoil, comes from the Asteraceae family and contains poisonous toxins that are harmful and injurious to a dog’s health.
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Symptoms of Yarrow Poisoning in Dogs
It is rare for pets to be severely poisoned by yarrow; the plant itself can taste quite bitter if consumed. However, even with a little ingested, the symptoms are noticeable. In most cases, the symptoms include:
- Stomach upset
- Excessive drooling
- Abdominal pain
You can identify yarrow by its white and yellow flowers. The plant is also known as:
- Carpenter’s weed
- Thousand weed
- Soldier’s woundwort
The plant has distinct characteristics and features to differentiate it from other plants. This includes:
- Its fragrance and widely spaced flowering heads
- The flowers are long lasting
- It has feathered and clustered green leaves
- Can grow up to a height of 3 feet
- Can become invasive
Causes of Yarrow Poisoning in Dogs
The yarrow plant contains toxins that may cause gastrointestinal issues:
- Sesquiterpene lactones
The herbal uses for the plant may be beneficial to humans in regulated quantities, but ingestion of a large amount by a canine can cause illness requiring veterinary care.
Diagnosis of Yarrow Poisoning in Dogs
The veterinarian will want to inquire as to the timeline of the ingestion of the plant, and will ask if you are aware of how much your dog consumed. Symptoms will vary depending on the amount eaten and whether your dog has a concurrent illness. Blood tests and a urinalysis may prove useful to the veterinarian as these tests can indicate how your pet is tolerating the side effects of the plant consumption.
If your pet has been ill recently, or if you have been administering supplements or vitamins of any type, relay this information to the clinical team. This information, along with the test results and symptoms, will indicate the level of treatment needed.
If your companion is experiencing excessive drooling, vomiting, or malaise the veterinarian may choose to start therapy right away. Identification of the plant can be helpful; if possible bring a portion of the plant to the clinic when you come.
Treatment of Yarrow Poisoning in Dogs
The veterinarian will offer treatment that targets the symptoms being experienced by your pet. If vomiting and diarrhea are evident, proper hydration is necessary. Intravenous fluid will be utilized to handle dehydration and to administer medications to combat the nausea and loose stools. Extra fluids also work to help rid the body of toxins via the urine.
You can also expect the veterinary specialist to induce vomiting. This will help to flush the digestive system, removing the toxins and plant materials that may be stuck in the stomach. Activated charcoal may be used to eliminate the main toxins in the body. For gastrointestinal upset, Kapectolin might be given. It acts as a coating for the stomach lining.
Recovery of Yarrow Poisoning in Dogs
Make sure you continue to give your pet fluids to prevent further dehydration. Pay close attention if there is any more vomiting or diarrhea. In that case, you may have to take your pet back to the veterinarian for a follow up visit. Usually, the prognosis of yarrow poisoning is good and recovery should be obvious in a few days. If your pet is the type that likes to graze on foliage, keeping him on a leash when out on walks may be the best solution.