Acorns pose toxic threat to WV livestock - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Acorns pose toxic threat to WV livestock

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  • UPDATE: Route 2 now open following tractor trailer accident

    UPDATE: Route 2 now open following tractor trailer accident

    Monday, August 25 2014 4:00 PM EDT2014-08-25 20:00:48 GMT
    A tractor trailer is blocking part of Route 2. The road is closed until further notice. Drivers heading in both direction are being asked to use the Big Ben Bowen Highway connector by Target to get around.
    A tractor trailer is blocking part of Route 2. The road is closed until further notice. Drivers heading in both direction are being asked to use the Big Ben Bowen Highway connector by Target to get around.

West Virginia Agriculture Commissioner Gus Douglass is warning farmers about the potential risk that acorns pose for livestock.

Douglass said cattle, horses, goats and sheep can develop serious health problems, including kidney failure, if they eat too many acorns.

Veterinarians say livestock are more likely to eat large amounts of acorns if there's a short supply of other food sources. "The primary treatment is prevention and that's to get these animals out of these fields where the acorns are and where the oak trees are, until the deer and turkey have time to get them up so they will be consumed. Probably in another three or four weeks, the risk will be gone," said Robert Marshall, a veterinarian in Kanawha County.

Symptoms of acorn toxicity include loss of appetite, depression, dehydration, and constipation.