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.
What Herbs Do Cats Love
Here are some herbs and plants you can grow for your cats to nibble on:
- Cat Grass. Cats eat grass! …
- Catnip. We all know this one really well. …
- Valerian. A good stimulant for cats, this herb is extremely attractive to them and helps to invigorate their desire to play. …
- Dill. …
- Edible Flowers.
Poisonous Plants In Autumn
As the season turns and mornings become cooler and crisper, the plants outside begin to change from summer blooms to brown, autumn leaves. During the autumn, many trees will drop their leaves, and although dead leaves can be less toxic, they are much easier for your pet to eat when theyre on the ground.
Autumn is also the time when many plants produce their berries, which can be both tempting and toxic for our furry friends. Fungi also tends to make an appearance, especially in damp areas, so keep an eye out for any mushrooms or toadstools that could tempt your pet!
While we might enjoy playing with conkers and acorns, dont forget that they can also be a danger for pets especially if theyre swallowed, as they can cause tummy upsets or even a potentially life-threatening blockage.
Plants to avoid:
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Are Daffodils Poisonous To Cats
While daffodils are a beautiful sign of spring, they are unfortunately dangerous for our feline friends. Daffodil bulbs contain crystals that are extremely toxic to cats if eaten.
The heads and leaves can also make your cat unwell if consumed. Daffodils contain a poisonous substance called lycorine. If digested, this can cause stomach upset, vomiting or wider serious illness.
If you suspect your cat has ingested any part of a daffodil, please seek advice from your vet immediately.
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
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Watch Out For Spring Bulbs
Although full of spring cheer, spring bulbs are not cat-friendly
Bulbs offer a cheery splash of colour to any garden, as well as the promise of warmer weather. You may have already seen our guide to planting bulbs, or even how to force bulbs indoors for an early display. But do be wary when it comes to planting bulbs around cats.’As a general rule, avoid plants with bulbs such as daffodils or autumn crocuses,’ says PDSA Vet Lynne James. ‘These can often be poisonous, especially if your pet digs up and eats the bulbs. An alternative to consider are African daisies, which will brighten up your garden and are non-toxic to cats .’
Daffodils, although jolly in appearance, can be potentially lethal to small animals. And if you love to bring them indoors to brighten up your home , make sure they are well out of reach. Adverse effects can occur even if your cat simply drinks water from a bunch’s vase, as advises the PDSA.
Other bulbs to be wary of include snowdrops, tulips, hyacinth, and Amaryllis.
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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Myth Buster: Are Poinsettias Toxic For Pets
Ironically, poinsettias, one of the more well-known holiday plant hazards for pets, arent that hazardous to pets. Due to the low level of toxicity seen with poinsettia ingestion, medical intervention is rarely needed unless signs are severe.
Mild signs of Poinsettia toxicity in pets will include: vomiting, drooling, and, rarely, diarrhea. The milky sap can irritate the skin, causing redness, swelling, and itchiness.
The full list of toxic plants is extensive for both indoor and outdoor plants. You can get the full list from the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control page of Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants. Hopefully, this article has helped inform you as you go to the nursery to choose your greenery, or even if your cat enjoys spending time outside. If you’re looking for great non-toxic alternatives, check out our Top 10 Indoor Plants Safe for Cats article!
What Are The Signs That My Cat Has Eaten A Poisonous Plant
Watch out for signs of poisoning
According to the team at Cats Protection, the following signs can appear if your cat has eaten a poisonous plant:
It’s important to remember that this list is not finite other effects can take hold as well. Don’t wait for symptoms to develop if you suspect a poisoning, try not to panic but do take your cat to the vet as quickly as you can.
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Symptoms To Watch For
Since many plants are irritants, most symptoms seen will be the result of irritation or inflammation, such as redness, swelling or itchiness of the eyes, skin or mouth.
When deeper parts of the gastrointestinal tract, like the stomach and intestines, become irritated, vomiting and diarrhea are likely.
If the toxic principle directly affects a particular organ, the symptoms seen will primarily be related to that organ. For example:
- Difficulty breathing
- Drooling or difficulty swallowing
- Excessive drinking and urinating
- Fast, slow or irregular heart beat and weakness
Which Plants Are Very Dangerous For Pets
Although there are a number of plants that can cause problems for your pets, some are more dangerous than others. Many plants will cause mild problems, such as a stomach upset, especially if your pet eats a lot of them or has a sensitive tummy. However, some can cause much more serious symptoms in your pet these include: Autumn Crocus, Azalea/Rhododendron, Cotoneaster, Cordyline/Dracaena, Daffodil, Dumbcane, Horse Chestnut, Oak, Peace Lilies, Potato plants and Yew.
Theres also a few plants in particular that can be highly toxic, or even life threatening. For many plants, the amount your pet eats is important the more your pet swallows, the more likely it is to be toxic. For some highly toxic plants, however, even a small amount can cause problems. If your pet eats a plant you dont recognise, its important to monitor them for symptoms and speak to your vet if youre concerned.
Highly toxic plants include:
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Lilies The Most Dangerous
|Signs of poisoning:||Vomiting, drooling, loss of appetite, increased urination, dehydration, no urination at all after 1224 hours|
People favor lilies because of their beauty and strong scent, but they top this list due to their high toxicity to cats. Its common for bouquets to include lilies. Easter lilies are regular springtime additions to many homes. But if theres a cat in the house, this is incredibly dangerous. The leaves, flowers, pollen, and even the scent of lilies can make a cat sick. If they dont go near the flowers, they could still inhale the pollen that sheds from them. They could even become dangerously ill if they drink the water from the vase. All lilies are toxic to cats. The result of lily poisoning in cats is kidney failure. The reason that lilies are so lethal to cats has not yet been pinpointed. All thats known is that a chemical in the plant destroys the kidneys. Keep lilies out of the house if you have a cat. If you think that your cat has ingested any part of a lily, this is a medical emergency and your cat should be taken to a veterinarian immediately.
Are Hydrangeas Poisonous To Cats
Hydrangeas are woody plants that yield rounded clusters of flowers in colors like white, lavender, and blue. Although they look pretty, they can be poisonous to cats.
Some of the compounds in hydrangeas can theoretically break down to cyanide gas in the stomach, I would definitely advise against letting your cat eat these, says Bischoff. I would expect hydrangeas to cause a more severe gastric and intestinal irritation, possibly bloody diarrhea.
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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 .
More Plants Poisonous To Cats
Hundreds of plants and flowers are toxic to cats. The toxicity of plants can range from mild to severe. The following list of plants poisonous to cats is not exhaustive, but includes many varieties that can harm your cat, according to the ASPCA:
False Queen Annes Lace
Snake Plant Solomons Lily
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Is Lilac Toxic To Cats
Are Lilacs Poisonous to Cats? … While the common lilac plant , such as our BloomerangÂ® Dark Purple Lilac, is safe for all animals, the Persian lilac of the melia genus is very toxic for cats. The Persian lilac can cause gastrointestinal distress, muscle weakness, tremors, and seizures if ingested.
Avoiding Plants Poisonous To Your Cat
Understandably, cat owners have good reason to be concerned about the toxicity of some household plants. According to the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, there were nearly 12,000 calls in 2018 related to ingesting common indoor and outdoor houseplants. And those numbers have probably grown.
Skip to Specific Plant Toxicity
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A List Of Flowers Poisonous To Cats
Veterinarians recommend preventing cats access to the following flowers. Keep in mind that any contact with these and other toxic flowers for cats can be dangerous.
Chewing on some plants is enough to cause toxicity, and ingestion is not always necessary to become poisoned, says Kelley.
Flowers that are toxic to cats include:
- True lilies and daylilies
*These lists are not all-inclusive, so if youre unsure about any plant, its safest to check with a professional.
Lily Of The Valley Plants
Looking at the petite petals on this overall dainty looking plant, you wouldnt guess the powerfully toxic punch it packs. Although it is different than the previously mentioned species of Lily and does not result in acute kidney failure, it is still quite poisonous and requires quick action on your part if you catch your favorite furry friend partaking in a Lily of the Valley snack.
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Symptoms Of Toxic Plant Poisoning In Cats May Include:
- Mental dullness, decreased interaction, or hiding
- Severe irritation or ulceration of the mouth, lips, and tongue: Signs include a cat pawing at their mouth, decreased appetite, gagging, drooling, or bad cat breath
- Difficulty swallowing
- Stomach pain: Signs that your cat has stomach pain might include decreased appetite, low energy, hiding, vomiting, and a decrease in urination and bowel movements
- Excessive drooling
- Changes in urine: This could be a change in color or change in the amount of urine
- Changes in thirst
- Low energy
First Aid For Poisoned Cats
As well as hazardous plants and flowers, there are items around the house that can cause poisoning in cats. If you can see the poisonous substance, take your cat away from it and call your vet for advice. They may want to see your cat immediately. Making your cat sick may not be helpful.
If you have evidence of what your cat has eaten, take a sample to the vet. Even a sample of vomit may help diagnosis, particularly if it is an unusual colour or contains plant matter.
Most importantly, don’t panic. Seek advice from your vet immediately and they’ll be able to help.
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Mildly Toxic Plants To Cats
Although there are many types of plants that can be toxic to cats, most may actually be found in or around the home. Here are some of the most common plants poisonous to cats with mild symptoms:
- Philodendron, Pothos, Dieffenbachia, Peace lily, Poinsettia Whether it comes from chewing on or ingesting the plants, all of these can lead to mouth and throat irritation, drooling and vomiting. Note: Massive amounts of poinsettias must be ingested before symptoms occur.
- Ficus and Snake plants can result in vomiting and diarrhea, while Dracaena may cause vomiting, drooling, and staggering. Jade carries the same symptoms in addition to depression.
- Aloe plants can result in vomiting, diarrhea, lack of appetite, and staggering.
- Did you know that catnip can be mildly toxic too? While its normal for cats to appear drunk or somewhat wild when nibbling on the plant, too much within a short time can also result in vomiting and diarrhea.
How To Keep Your Cat Safe From Poisonous Plants
You can keep your cat safe from poisonous plants inside the home by removing them. But it isnt as easy with outdoor plants and flowers, especially if your cat roams around the neighbourhood.
The first step is familiarising yourself with the most toxic plants in your area. Remove harmful ones from your garden, and list any you see in your neighbours yards. Keep records of both the Latin name and common name so you can identify them more easily. This will also help your vet to treat your cat correctly in the event of it being poisoned. You could also plant a cat-friendly garden. Not only will your cat be safe, but you will also have complete peace of mind.
We really hope you find this article helpful. And let us know in the comments below if we have left a particularly poisonous plant off the list that you think needs to be included.
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Which Flowers And Plants Are Safe For Cats
Did you know that certain plants and flowers can actually be dangerous for your cat?
While any plant material can cause mild stomach upset, some plants are much more dangerous, says Tina Wismer, medical director at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center.
Its also important for cat parents to know that some plants and flowers that are relatively safe for dogs can be deadly for cats. Members of the Lilium or Hemerocallis can cause kidney failure in cats, but only mild stomach upset in dogs, says Wismer.
If youre considering an eco-conscious revamp of your home décor, check this list to find out which flowers and houseplants are safe for cats.
Can Cats Be Around Hydrangeas
According to the PetMD, hydrangeas are poisonous to cats and dogs, but a very large amount of hydrangea must be consumed by pets to become ill. Since symptoms are usually mild, cases often go unreported. Generally, if enough leaves, flowers or buds are eaten, an animal can suffer from diarrhea and vomiting.
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Common Garden Plants That Are Toxic To Cats
Franny Syufy is a cat expert with over two decades of experience writing about feline anatomy and medical conditions. She is a professional member of the Cat Writers’ Association, won the prestigious PurinaOne Health Award for her writing, and authored two books on cat care.
A number of common garden plants are actually toxic to cats. When grass is available, most cats will not eat outside plants or flowers. Occasionally, out of boredom or curiosity, a cat may nibble on a leaf or stem. While it’s rare that a cat will consume a large enough amount to become ill, it’s better to be safe and know which plants are potentially harmful and by what degree. Some may cause kitty just a little discomfort, and other plants can be lethal.
The plants outlined are some of the more popular plants that can harm your cat. This is not an exhaustive list and you’ll also want to refer to the ASPCA’s toxic plants list to ensure your pets stay safe in the garden.
If you believe your cat has eaten any of these and is showing signs of being sick, contact your veterinarian or call the Animal Poison Control Center immediately.