There are many varieties worldwide of the genus Ranunculus, of which the following are of importance in veterinary toxicology:

Ranunculus bulbosus (bulbous buttercup, crowfoot, frogsfoot, goldcup, St. Anthony's turnip);
R. sceleratus (celery-leaved crowfoot);
R. repens (creeping buttercup, crow-foot);
R. acris (meadow buttercup, crowfoot, upright meadow, goldcup, grenouillette);
R. lingua (great spearwort);
R. thora.

A member of the plant family RANUNCULACEAE. Annual or perennial herb with erect or creeping rootstock. Hollow stems are much branched, hairy or smooth. Yellow or white flowers. The plant favours wet meadows, pastures, ditches and damp places.


[affected.gif] Animals most affected
Sheep, goats, (horses).


[etiology.gif] Etiology
Ingestion of large quantities of fresh plants over a prolonged period of time. Poisoning relatively rare as the plants have an acrid, bitter taste, although the application of agrochemicals, particularly the phenoxy acid herbicides (2,4-D, 2,4,5-T, MCPA, etc.), increases the palatability of these plants.


[toxic.gif] Toxicity
Contains an acrid, oily irritant principle, protoanemonin. The plant is most toxic when flowering; drying the plant lowers its toxicity. Toxic doses not known.
With reference to R. acris, a diet containing 20 - 40% of the plant may be tolerated for several weeks without causing any adverse toxic effects.


[clinical.gif] Clinical features
Gastrointestinal

Followed by

Outcome
Generally favourable. However, if large quantities ingested, possibility of a rapid deterioration with convulsions and death within several hours.


[lesions.gif] Lesions
Non-specific:


[treatm~1.gif] Treatment
No antidote. Symptomatic care only: