Green foxtail (Setaria viridis) is an invasive, annual grass considered to be a noxious weed, found throughout Europe, North Africa, Asia, and North America. It has decumbent or erect stems which grow up to a 1-2 meters tall. It produces a dense, compact, spikelike panicle inflorescence with sharp spikelets---also referred to as awns. These awns have sharp ends which can penetrate the soft tissues of the mouth when horses chew and become embedded in the skin, causing inflammation, irritation, redness, and draining sores with purulent discharge.
Green foxtail is a frequent contaminate of hayfields and grain crops. When baled in with the hay fed to horses, it can cause grass awn-associated stomatitis in horses, resulting in oral lesions around the outside of their mouth, tongue, and inside of their mouth.
- Oral Lesions
- Reduced Appetite
- Excessive Salivation