There is a persistent myth that ragwort is dangerous to dogs. Ragwort poses no risk to dogs. The standard veterinary textbook does not mention it. Ragwort is as dangerous to dogs as it is to dolphins. Neither animal eats it.

The book, Handbook of Poisoning in Dogs and Cats Alexander Campbell and Michael Chapman, is compiled from more than 15,000 cases referred to the UK's Veterinary Poisons Information Service The facts are however extremely clear on this subject. The risk just does not exist to any significant degree at all. >p> The reality is that a search of the scientific literature shows not one single case of ragwort poisoning reported in dogs. There are plenty of scare stories in the press from time to time but there is no evidence that ragwort poses any serious risk at all to dogs.

Ragwort is of course poisonous to mammals. So if a dog were to be force fed this intensely distasteful plant it would be poisoned. However, the poisonous dose for the grazing animals where it is a risk if it is in hay is measured in percentages of body weight so it would be safe to assume that the same sort of dosage risk would apply to dogs. There would be no risk to them from just encountering the plant.

The message here is just don't panic about this scare story. Look at the facts of which you will find plenty on this website, and make your decisions on the basis of the evidence.