Nicotiana tabacum (common tobacco, Havana tobacco, giant tobacco). Related
species: N. rustica (rustic tobacco, little tobacco, nicotiana). A member
of the plant family SOLANACEAE. Cultivated annual herbaceous plant with an erect
hairy stem and large, ovate, hairy, light green leaves. Flowers are pinkish (N.
tabacum) or yellow (N. rustica) with smooth, oval capsular fruits.
Animals most affected
Cattle, dogs, (sheep, goats, horses).
The fresh plant is very rarely ingested compared with the dried leaves which are
frequently eaten (cattle), as are cigarettes, cigars and cigarette butts (dogs).
Contains the alkaloid nicotine which is highly toxic; the content increases as the
plant grows and matures. The nicotine level is maximal when the plant is setting
seed, but this also varies according to the method of cultivation. Drying does not
modify or reduce its toxicity.
DT in g dried leaves:
If small amounts are ingested
Hypothermia, tremor, ataxia, prostration;
Anorexia, constipation, flatulence;
Recovery within several days (8-10) without sequelae.
If a large quantity is ingested
Severe depression, foetid diarroea;
Death in several hours.
(In dogs, a persistent tachycardia frequently presents.)
Non-specific and not pronounced: congestion of the gastrointestinal tract.
No antidote. Symptomatic care only: