Common Plants Toxic to Pets

May 22, 2014 in Aerowood Animal Hospital

Soon we will be frequenting the gardening stores to brighten our homes and yards with plants.  Be wary if you spot your pet nibbling on plants.  Numerous flowers, bushes, ivies, and fruit trees prove toxic to animals, but house pets will occasionally decide to test them.  Here’s a short list to give you an idea, but the list of toxic plants your pet might encounter is much larger.  If you ever have reason to believe that your pet has eaten something toxic and you see some of the signs listed below, seek immediate veterinary attention.

  • Azalea, Rhododendron, Rosebay: All 250 species of this plant are toxic to cats, dogs, and horses.  Ingestion of a few leaves can cause serious problems.  It interferes with muscle function including the heart.  Horses don’t like the taste and will typically avoid it unless there is nothing else to eat.
  • Caladium, Elephant Ears, Mother-in-Law Plant: Toxic to cats and dogs due to insoluble calcium oxalates.  Signs include oral irritation, drooling, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing.
  • Crabapples & Apricots: Stems, leaves, and seeds contain cyanide.  They are particularly toxic when wilting.  Signs of toxic ingestion included brick red mucous membranes, dilated pupils, difficulty breathing, panting, shock.
  • Aloe: Signs of ingestion include vomiting, depression, diarrhea, anorexia, tremors, change in urine color.
  • Arrow-Head Vine: Toxic to dogs and cats due to insoluble calcium oxalates. Signs of toxic ingestion include oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty swallowing
  • Lilies: Lilies are mysterious in that they are highly toxic to cats, and the exact reason is unknown.  Cats are the only species known to be affected.  Signs of toxic ingestion include vomiting, lack of appetite, lethargy, kidney failure, and death.
  • Baby’s Breath: Clinical signs include vomiting and diarrhea
  • Boxwood: This bush contains alkaloids toxic to cats, dogs, and horses.  Vomiting and diarrhea are signs of ingestion in cats and dogs. Can be a source of colic in horses.
  • Buttercup, Buttercress, Figwort: Signs of toxic ingestion include wobbly gait, excessive salivation, anorexia, depression, diarrhea, and vomiting
  • Calla Lily: Insoluble calcium oxalates, same as above.

Pets Nibbling on Plants copy

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