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This is a discussion on dandelions within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    05-15-2013, 01:04 AM
Originally Posted by tinyliny    
and the chances of them being moldy is about the same as getting mold in the hay you buy (or less) and the horses turn up their noses at mold anyway.

Not exactly true. Endophytes (fungus/mold) can live on or IN other plants. There are all kinds of plants that fungi live symbiotically with. For example, almost all Tall Fescue in the US is infected with mycotoxin producing fungi. As is rye grass, most clover, johnson grass and other plants. So, I don't know why the dandelion is so scary when these grasses are just as prevalent.

A horse who gets the slobbers has eaten copious amounts of clover with a fungus, for example. My horse ate alsike clover with a fungus one year and she had a photosensitive reaction caused by the mycotoxin. It does happen.
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    05-15-2013, 01:05 AM
Originally Posted by tinyliny    
Going back to the OP's photo, would you, Toto, suggest she go out and poison all those dandelions?

I still maintain that they are NOT toxic, and the chances of them being moldy is about the same as getting mold in the hay you buy (or less) and the horses turn up their noses at mold anyway.

I have never heard one single person EVER say "beware" of the dandelions in the field. Why, just becuase of this very interesting discussion, I picked me a big handful on my walk tonight and think I might steam 'em up and eat 'em.
Poison? No! Id have the soil tested for nitrate and other deficits and for mycotoxins. A field with that many dandelions sends up a red flag for me.

I don't know- hay at our local TSC was moldy like crazy and peoples horses been eatin that. Field growing mold- and mold that grows durring curing process are very different. But like I said the dandelions I've dug up have had whitish mold on the taproot too and the flowering part and green flats were beautiful.

let me know how they taste!
    05-15-2013, 02:27 AM
Ooh look what has been going on when they moved the thread ad I was busy.

It's late I'm tired, some of us are trying to get seeded here, but on a quick gallop through.

Originally Posted by toto    
I suggest you do a little more research.. the actual 'catsear' plant itself does not cause australian stringhalt.. its the mycotoxins that causes it. 'Flatweed' is the leaves at the bottom of the actual flowering weed.. a dandelion and catsear are two varieties of it.. look at the green leaves.. theyre 'flat' and the 'plant' is a 'weed'

And I suggest you do more research, and learn to spell and speak English while you are at it.

Catsear the plant itself is not toxic-- neither is dandelion-- the mycotoxin that is found often in the two weeds cause australian stringhalt-- its caused by a fungi -not an allergic reaction to the plant-- you're confused with yellow star thistle.. looks like catsear and dandelion but is poisonous to equine.

Reckon imma learn you real good, mama-- youns can get yo ejumacashon on or be illiterate to the fact! A lot like blowin out a candle with a mouth fulla petrol.

You sound more like an idiot the more you carry on, want to borrow a shovel?

This debate reminds me of the donkey scene from family guy! you're wrong- know your wrong- but keep hollerin how you're definitely right, lol. its fine- I needed the entertainment today- I thank you for that!

I take it that is some sort of TV show where you conduct your research?

"No, dandelions can't contain mycotoxin.. no your wrong.. " im messin with ya- don't take offense.

Still comes back to the fact that you stated Dandelions are poisonous and they are NOT FACT!

Originally Posted by ponypile    
Actually, a dandelion is a completely separate plant, genus Taraxacum. Where as "flatweed" and "catsear" (also cat's ear and false dandelion) are names for the same plant, genus and species Hypochaeris radicata. In terms of identifying them, true dandelions leaves usually stand up, and there is only one bloom coming from each stem, with no splitting from the original stem, the stems are hollow, and the leaves are more jagged. In catsear the leaves lie flat around the central taproot, there can be multiple blooms per stem since the stem can split several times from the original stem, the stems are not hollow, and the leaves are less jagged along the edges and tend to be fuzzy.

I'm not arguing the fact that dandelions can have mold in them. Keep in mind all grasses/weeds in the pasture can become victim to fungi, and none of it is good for horses. However, from the papers I have found online, the particular mycotoxin causing Australian stringhalt seems to be very much more related to catsear than dandelion. And it seems like of those that reference dandelion as a cause, do so by saying "flatweed or dandelion" as though they are the same thing, as appose to separating them (flatweed AND dandelion) or using their scientific name. The ones that do, specify Hypochaeris radicata. They cannot be confused for the same thing, they are different plants and have different chemistry with different resistances to pathogens.

One thing they all seem to have in common though is the statement that it is often a result of a poorly kept/low nutrient field. But I'm pretty sure if my field is molding, I'm not going to be putting my horses on it anyways, dandelions or not.
Good post

Originally Posted by DancingArabian    
Why would you only quote one sentence out of context in my post? I said that I believed it was a mold, not that it was the dandelion itself.

Dandelions, as far as I know and have seen are fine, though my horse only likes them when they're yellow.
Because it suited me to? The point is that TOTO is stating that dandelions are poisonous, and they are not. Much more research needed

Originally Posted by toto    

have you seen the roots on the two? Theyre long carrotish almost- reaching deep down in the moist soil-- Grass don't reach down that far in the soil. The deeper in you get the more moisture and moisture makes mold.
Actually many field grasses DO put down very deep roots, it is only the lawn variety that is habitually shallow rooted

Originally Posted by toto    
They are both flatweeds the green part is flat- I did not say it was the same species! That's just not true!


Its not only suggested either- some people actually call it 'dandelion poisoning'

They are toxic and dangerous when in large quantities like in the OPs lot. Its an obvious sign of barring horse field that's run down! Of course it would be moldy with the ground moist and the roots so far down into the soil.

It is true! Dandelions and catsear grow in large quantities when the soil is missing nutrients. In your case id have the soil checked- you have obviously low nitrate levels if you're havin to fertilize-- I grow hay and never fertilize my fields and they are thriving this year like crazy and not a single dandelion in my field! It aint been fertilized, limed, etc in years and its the best lookin hay field in town! This also lets me know you have no clue about what you're talkin about!

You are obviously completely barking mad if you believe this

[Just wanted to add- weve cut hay already once this year- our fields are boomin already and not a single dandelion]

No the roots that grow off the mane root are the taproots**

No plants do not have manes, that's horses, and the tap roots of plants are the main stem

How do you not know you have mold? You already told me you have low nitrate levels and have to fertilize your pastures to get them to grow. Ever concidered havin a mycotoxin test run along with a nitrate test?

That's not true- there are many different types of mycotoxins and they all do very different things. I've seen it on the mane roots and nothin wrong with the weed above ground..
Originally Posted by Sahara    
what type of grass do you grow for your hay?
I grow green grass, how about you?

You know flat bladed, and mine varies from a grass alfalfa mix, to dense fertilized plant free grass, to native deep rooted, with a mix of plants in it!

OK, it's late, and as I say, I am very tired, so I'm off.
    05-15-2013, 02:56 PM
Awwwwww- golden horse, you're angered at the fact that you're wrong and you're using insults to compensate for the lack of factual information..

Sounds like you need a hug-- 'commere!

No hard feelings, sweetheart-- I might be an 'idiot' but at least im happy..
    05-15-2013, 03:19 PM
Originally Posted by Sahara    
what type of grass do you grow for your hay?
its an orchard grass mix.. real good stuff. Bails up (cures) nice and its got enough in it (meets our horses nutrient requirements) that we don't need to feed grain or supplement our horses in any way. (We do have a mineral block) They have great feet- shiny coats- and are healthy weight. All that matters to me.

..oh and that they don't eat any mycotoxin affected dandelions, lol.
    05-15-2013, 03:43 PM
Originally Posted by toto    
Awwwwww- golden horse, you're angered at the fact that you're wrong and you're using insults to compensate for the lack of factual information..

Sounds like you need a hug-- 'commere!

No hard feelings, sweetheart-- I might be an 'idiot' but at least im happy..
FACT 1: I'm no ones sweetheart, just a hard working farmer and horse owner with a low tolerance level for BS.

FACT 2: I'm not wrong, where as time and again in seemingly thread after thread you state your opinions as facts, and also seem to think that your way is the only way.

FACT 3: Glad you recognize an insult, because that means that when you are chucking them around you ARE doing it deliberately.

FACT 4: I am very very choosy who actually touches me, so please do not hug, it makes me twitchy.

FACT 5: I'm glad you are happy and you recognize what you are, makes life so much more pleasant.


What you do not seem able to grasp is that all this stems from the FACT that you are wrong,

YES there is a causal link between AUSTRALIAN(as in prevalent in Australia) stringhalt read this https://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&rct=j...,d.aWc&cad=rja

ONE mention of the word dandelion and that is when paired with false, as in false dandelion.


Step by step,

Dandelions are not poisinous to horses or people, but a highly beneficial herb
: or a weed if you prefer, but beneficial just the same.

There is a mycotoxin that exists that causes Australian Stringhalt

This mycotoxin is found on Flatweed (Hypochaeris radicata), Sheep Sorrel and Couch, false dandelion.

It is found on highly stressed land following drought conditions.

SO returning to the pic that started it all, a cute looking pony happily grazing on and around healthy dandelions and good looking grass, it is scaremongering and totally false to state "you know that dandelions or poisonous don't you"
    05-15-2013, 04:09 PM
I think both sides have been fully represented. I know where I stand, and I know that no one is required to agree with me. But , this is becoming way too personal, so at this point, I am taking my moderator's perogative and closing this thread.
ponypile, Wallaby, Gremmy and 7 others like this.

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