- Additional Common Names:
- Sheep Laurel
- Scientific Name:
- Kalmia augustifolia
- Where Found:
- Found in northeastern North America on rocky hillsides, nonfertile soils, woodlands, abandoned meadows and pastures.
- Toxic to Horses
- Toxic Principles:
- Clinical Signs:
- Typically not very palatable to horses unless it is the only forage available, but sheep and goats may graze readily on the plant. The toxic principle interferes with normal skeletal muscle, cardiac muscle and nerve function. Clinical effects typically occur within a few hours after ingestion, and can include acute digestive upset, excessive drooling, loss of appetite, frequent bowel movements/diarrhea, colic, depression, weakness, loss of coordination, stupor, leg paralysis, weak heart rate and recumbency for 2 or more days; at this point, improvement may be seen or the animal may become comatose and die.
If your pet ingested this plant, contact your local veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435.*
* A $65 consultation fee may apply.
Credit: Photo by George F. Russell, courtesy of Smithsonian Institution