What Plants Are Toxic To Cats
Many pet owners keep common plants in their homes without realising that they are poisonous to cats. Not all of them will prove fatal if chewed or eaten, but some can definitely kill your much-loved feline friend. Never assume a cat will instinctively try not to eat a poisonous plantall too often, cats end up being rushed to the vet suffering from poisoning as a direct result of chewing on or eating toxic houseplants.
In this article, I hope to list many of the most common plants that pose health risks to cats so that you can ensure you don’t bring them into your home. If you already have any of these in your home, it may be a good idea to remove them. Many of these species are commonly kept as houseplants, so I am guessing that some will come as surprises to unsuspecting cat owners.
If your pet shows any signs of distress, contact your veterinarian immediately and make them aware of anything the animal may have consumed. Do not attempt to diagnose or treat any ailments yourself. This list is not exhaustive, so contact your vet before introducing new plants to your home.
- Common names: Narcissus, jonquil, paper white
- Toxic to: Cats, dogs, horses
- Symptoms: Vomiting, salvation, diarrhea, low blood pressure, convulsions , tremors, cardiac arrhythmias
- Note: The bulbs are the most poisonous part of the plant.
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If you think your cat has eaten part of a poisonous plant, promptly bring your cat to your veterinarian. If you can, take the plant with you for ease of identification. If you think that your animal is ill or may have ingested a poisonous substance, contact your local veterinarian or the ASPCA 24-hour emergency poison hotline directly at 1-888-426-4435.
It’s possible that poinsettias get the bummest rap in the plant world. They have a reputation as deadly beauties, but is the ubiquitous holiday plant actually toxic? About 70 percent of the population will answer yes, and although every year there is a bumper crop of stories explaining otherwise, the myth persists. In reality, ingestion of excessive poinsettia may produce only mild to moderate gastrointestinal tract irritation, which can include drooling and vomiting.
It all started back in the early 20th century when the 2-year-old child of a U.S. Army officer was alleged to have died from consuming a poinsettia leaf, says Snopes. As these things have a habit of doing, the toxic potential of poinsettia has become highly exaggerated, and many a concerned cat parent now treat poinsettias as persona non grata in their households. Keeping this plant out of the reach of your pet to avoid stomach upset is still a good idea, but according to the ASPCA, you need not banish the poinsettia from your home for fear of a fatal exposure.
Here’s the ASPCA’s list of the 17 top toxic plants to steer your kitty away from.
Are Lilacs Poisonous To Cats
One of springs most aromatic flowers, the common lilac is a violet-colored shrub that can also come in shades of lavender, burgundy, white, yellow, and blue.
Lilacs have a slightly bitter taste, which may deter cats from eating them. Even if cats do make contact with lilacs, they shouldnt become seriously ill, says Bischoff, who frequently cuts lilacs in the spring and places them around her own home.
I think in a worst-case scenario, a cat might get an upset stomach and maybe vomit or have some diarrhea, she says.
As mentioned above, while the common lilac is not poisonous, the Persian lilac is, so pet owners should know the difference between the two varieties before planting or plucking.
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What To Do If Your Cat Chews Or Eats Toxic Plants
If you suspect that your cat has chewed on or ingested a potentially toxic plant in your home or garden, Dr. Zacharias recommends taking a picture of the plant and immediately heading to your veterinarian. It does not matter the quantity they consumedit is better to be safe because the repercussions can be that dire. Plus, the plant does not have to be ingested in order to be poisonous. Simply chewing on the plant can be toxic. Often, the ASPCA poison control hotline can be called en route to the hospital or once the cat has arrived, she adds. How quickly treatment is started often makes a significant difference in the patients health and outcome.
You shouldnt attempt to induce vomiting in a cat by giving hydrogen peroxide or any other over-the-counter emetics such as ipecac, no matter what youve read on the Internet. A veterinarians expertise is needed here.
Its also important to note that cats are very skilled at hiding their symptomsits a defense mechanism that keeps them safe. Call your vet or the ASPCA hotline if you suspect that your cat has eaten one of these poisonous plants even if they arent acting overtly sick. That said, symptoms such as diarrhea, lethargy, and vomiting are all difficult to hide, so be on the lookout for those signs, specifically. Next, review these additional household items that are hazardous to pets.
Flower Toxicity In Cats
Plants produce toxins as a survival mechanism, says Dr. Karyn Bischoff, a board-certified veterinary toxicologist at the New York State Animal Health Diagnostic Center in Ithaca, New York.Plants cant run away, so they have to come up with other ways to prevent getting eaten by insects and animals.
Because cats dont have hands that can manipulate objects like we do, they default to using their mouths, which gives some toxins immediate access to their body, adds Kelley.
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Why Are Lilies Dangerous To Cats
Lilies are particularly toxic to cats. Although you might find that your cat is disinterested in eating them, there is always a risk that they may come into contact with the flower’s pollen by rubbing up against it and absent-mindedly licking their fur.Unfortunately there are several types of lilies that are poisonous to cats, including Easter Lily, Tiger Lily and other members of the lily family.All parts of the lily plant are toxic to cats if ingested, and consuming small amounts can result in severe poisoning. The best way to prevent your cat from being poisoned is simply to not have lilies in your home or garden.
If you suspect your cat may have ingested any part of the lily plant, please seek advice from your vet immediately.
Flowers And Cats: A Closer Look At Common Varieties
When reviewing any list of non-poisonous or poisonous plants for cats, keep in mind that some names can be misleading.
For example, while the common lilac plant is not considered poisonous to cats, the Persian lilac of the Melia genus is. This plant is very toxic. It can cause more severe gastrointestinal distress, and also muscle weakness, tremors, and seizures if ingested, says Bischoff.
If in doubt about any plant, it pays to run it past your veterinarian, a garden expert, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, or the Pet Poison Helpline .
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Plants That Are Poisonous Or Toxic To Cats
Cats are curious by nature and love to check out new things. Theyre also notorious for getting into things that we dont want them to touch! We want to keep our cats safe, and that includes not having anything toxic within their reach in the home . Plants are fun to decorate the house and liven up a room with, but many can be harmful to cats. Before we decide to bring that beautiful plant home, as pet owners, we have to make sure its not toxic to our furry companions. Always check first to see if a plant that you want will hurt your pets in any way. Browse this list of toxic plants to see if any that youre considering getting or already own are named. If you think that your cat has ingested any toxic substance, seek immediate veterinary care or call poison control right away. Hundreds of plants are toxic to cats. A more comprehensive list is available, but weve chosen 12 common house and garden plants that you should avoid bringing into or around your home if you have cats. However, no list will be complete, as there are more than 390,000 identified plant species. If you suspect that your cat ate a plant that made them ill, consult your vet right away.
Are Mums Poisonous To Cats
Mums are some of autumns most widely-grown flowers, presenting in deep orange, burgundy, purple, and yellow. They contain multiple toxic compounds that can cause vomiting, hyper-salivation, diarrhea, incoordination, and even skin inflammation from contact with some varieties, explains Kelley.
Ironically, pyrethrin flea sprays were once made from chrysanthemum flowers, says Bischoff. Pyrethrin is a natural insecticide that can cause some skin irritation, increased salivation, nausea, and vomiting in cats, both because of the effects on nerves and because they have a very bitter flavor.
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What Plants Are Toxic To Cats And Dogs
Turns out, hundreds of plants can be poisonous to pets, and many of these are found in and around our homes.
In fact, one of the experts I spoke to says when it comes to pets, there are no “safe” plants.
“When you look in textbooks about the poisonous principles of plants, each plant has the ability to poison a number of different systems in the body,” says veterinarian and vet clinic director Dr David Neck.
Paula Parker, an emergency vet and AVA president, says that although many plants are mild-to-moderate in terms of toxicity and can cause “mild” symptoms like gastrointestinal upset. When pets consume highly toxic plants it can be fatal even if they only have a very small amount.
The following list contains 10 common plants and flowers toxic to cats and dogs. It’s by no means comprehensive, so if you have pets check out this resource from American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals .
Plants That Are Safe & Non
Cats, like people, seem to enjoy the sights and smells of flora. Sometimes that love for nature also includes eating plants . But Ahna Brutlag, DVM and Senior Veterinary Toxicologist at the Pet Poison Helpline, says there are several common houseplants, greenery, and succulents cats can coexist with peacefully.
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Plants Poisonous To Cats
There are several common plants than can be dangerous to cats. Cats only need meat in their diet, not plants or vegetables. But, being curious creatures, they will sometimes lick, chew or eat plants. This can put them at risk of plant toxicity.
The danger level will often depend on the type of plant and the amount eaten. Cats can also get the pollen or sap from poisonous plants on their skin. This can damage the skin or cause more serious problems inside their body after your cat grooms and licks themselves.
Get to know the signs of plant poisoning in your cat.
Its important to speak to your vet if you think your cat has come into contact with a poisonous plant, even if you didnt see them lick or eat it.
Common Plants Toxic To Dogs And Cats
Paula Parker, David Neck and Nicole O’Kane.
Other common toxic plants include, but are not limited to: holly, tulip, oleander, azalea, daffodil, carnations, chrysanthemum, corn plant, dumb cane, jade plant.
Foods to also be wary of include tomato leaves and stems, grapes and any derivatives , onions, rhubarb leaves, avocado, macadamia nuts, garlic and walnuts.
- This is not an exhaustive list.
- Plants have various names, so always check all names when assessing the safety risk.
- If you suspect your pet has ingested a toxic substance, take them to the vet immediately.
And don’t forget about extremely dangerous snail pellets, rat poison and human medications, such as anti-inflammatories and paracetamol.
“Keep them well away from pets and be very careful,” Dr Neck says. “Goodness knows how many times people have unwittingly left their medications around their pets.”
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Keeping Your Cat Safe In The Garden
It’s harder to protect your cats outdoors as they will have a greater territory than just your garden. However, thankfully, as cats are discriminate eaters, they are unlikely to try eating anything unfamiliar and will most likely spend their time nibbling on safe grass or watching everything else going on out there.
To help keep your cat safe outdoors:
- Familiarise yourself with outdoor plants poisonous to cats and avoid having these in your garden altogether
- Promptly clear up any prunings
- Keep bulbs such as tulips and daffodils out of reach
Many Kitties Love To Nibble On Plants But There Are Some Very Toxic Plants For Cats Avoid Lilies Kalanchoe And Dieffenbachia If You Have Cats
Everyone knows the old saying, Curiosity killed the cat. Cats, especially younger ones, have a reputation for getting into anything and everything. And much like little children, they often like to explore by putting things in their mouths. This can become a serious problem when beloved kitties encounter substances that can do them harm, including toxic plants for cats. Many common houseplants such as dieffenbachia and kalanchoe pose health problems for cats, so cat owners should do a little research before adding new plants to their home.
NOTE: Weve rounded up some common poisonous plants that cat owners should know about. But this is only a small part of a much bigger list. The ASPCA offers an extensive searchable database of toxic plants at their website. Cat owners may wish to check all of their houseplants against this database, just to be safe. Also check out houseplants that arent safe for dogs.
If you worry that your cat may have ingested a poisonous plant, or if he or she is displaying any unusual symptoms, call your vet immediately.
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Poisonous Succulents For Cats
Poisonous succulents for cats can cause toxicity and even death to your beloved feline friends. If you are growing different types of succulents indoors or outdoors, its important to know which ones are dangerous for your cat.
Poisonous succulents for cats include Crassula arborescens , Senecio rowleyanus , Sansevieria Trifasciata , Aloe Vera, Kalanchoe delagoensis , Crassula Ovata , Kalanchoe tomentosa , Kalanchoe daigremontiana , Euphorbia Milii , Euphorbia Tiruacalli .
Read about other types of flowers that are poisonous to your pet.
There are many types of succulents, some are outright poisonous while others have spines and needles that pose a threat to cats. Playful kitties can get injured easily by succulents such as euphorbias, different types of cacti, agaves, and yuccas.
Has My Cat Been Poisoned
A veterinary surgeon should be contacted immediately if your cat suddenly collapses, has repeated vomiting or severe diarrhoea, or shows signs of excessive irritation of the skin of the mouth or throat. Cats that are lethargic and off their food for a day or more may also have ingested something unsuitable and professional help should be sought. If you see your cat eat something that you suspect to be poisonous, do not attempt to make the cat vomit. Take the cat to the vet with a sample of the plant or even better a plant label. This will help the vet to find a treatment or antidote to the poison. Make a note of the time of eating and any symptoms. Several days may pass between the ingestion of the undesirable material and the effects.
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Common Plants And Flowers That Are Poisonous To Cats
Many toxic plants are irritants: they cause localized inflammation of the skin, mouth, stomach, etc. The toxic principle in other plants may have a systemic effect and damage or alter the function of a cats organs, like the kidney or heart.
Heres a list of some common plants that are toxic to cats:
- Azaleas and Rhododendrons
- Castor Bean
- Chrysanthemum, Daisy, Mum
- Lily of the Valley
- Pothos, Devils Ivy
- Sago Palm
Are Pothos Toxic To Cats What You Need To Know
Golden Pothos is one of the most common houseplants. They are exceedingly easy to take care of and easy to find. Their large leaves make them very aesthetically pleasing. Theyre also relatively slow-growing, so they dont need to be repotted often.
However, these plants are extremely toxic to cats. The leaves and stems contain a chemical called calcium oxalate crystals. These little crystals can penetrate the soft tissues of your cats mouth, throat, and stomach. This can cause damage to your cats digestive system sometimes severely.
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Cast Iron Plant/ Bar Room Plant
A native of Japan and Taiwan, the cast iron plant derives its name from the fact it can be neglected without suffering too much long-term damage. Broad, floppy leaves that shoot upwards from the pot make this evergreen a popular good looking plant. Able to withstand drought, pest, and poor light means even beginner gardeners find this plant easy to maintain and keep looking good. If you want the nearest thing to an indestructible house plant this is it.
Light Conditions: Avoid direct sunlight.
Watering: Water regularly in summer, cut down in winter.
Which Plants Are Poisonous To Cats A Complete Guide
All cat parents should know the most common plants that are poisonous to cats. Whether in your yard or in your home, youll want to keep certain plants and flowers away from your feline companions. The toxicity of various plants and flowers can range from mild to severe, depending on the poisonous component of the plant.
More than 11,000 calls to the ASPCAs Animal Poison Control Center were logged about plants in 2018, according to Tina Wismer, DVM, DABVT, DABT, the centers medical director. Plants that are poisonous to cats made up 3,675, or about a third, of those calls.
It is best to familiarize yourself with the list of toxic plants and keep these types of plants out of your home or garden for the health and safety of your pet, Dr. Wismer says. For indoor plants, cats are likely to ingest the plants. Make sure to keep all plants out of paws reach. Cats are good climbers, so its best to move plants to a safe place they cannot access and dont underestimate their ability to get at things that are high up.
One plant that is extremely dangerous to cats is the lily.
Lilies are a very big deal because they cause acute, potentially fatal kidney failure, says integrative veterinarian Carol Osborne, DVM, of the Chagrin Falls Pet Clinic in Chagrin Falls, Ohio.
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