Whether you decorate your home with fragrant bouquets or enjoy hours in the garden, there are some plants you should avoid if you have a dog or cat. Flowers such as lilies and roses as well as weeds like shamrocks can pose a health risk to our naturally curious pets if ingested.

Read on to learn what common flora is dangerous to our furry friends, and how to spot the first signs of poisoning.

Are roses safe for pets?

Is there a more classic way to express your love for someone than sending roses? We didn’t think so. But you may want to reconsider your floral arrangement when sending to a home containing a dog or cat, as these buds present a thorny issue for pet parents.

While nontoxic, the perennial often results in drooling, pawing at the mouth, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, abdominal pain, lack of appetite and thorn-induced injuries. As with most objects, roses can obstruct and perforate their gastrointestinal tract (stomach and intestines) if swallowed.

Are lilies toxic to pets?

All lilies can be problematic for pets. Did you know that the Pet Poison Helpline considers lilies to be one of the top 10 poisonous plants to cats? But dogs can fall victim to lily toxicity, too.

The specific toxin in these springtime favorites has yet to be identified, but if consumed, cats may suffer from severe acute kidney failure. Keep your pet away from Tiger lilies, Daylilies, Asiatic lilies, Easter lilies, and Japanese Show lilies altogether. From the leaves and stem to the petals and pollen, all parts of the lily are highly toxic to our best friends.

Some plants may have lily in their name, but are not considered “true lilies” as they aren’t members of the Lilium or Hemerocallis species. However, they should still be avoided at all costs. Take Calla lilies and Peace lilies for example. These “imposters” contain toxic oxalate crystals which will irritate your pet’s mouth, tongue or throat, causing excess drool and discomfort. Peruvian lilies may cause gastrointestinal upset while Lilies-of-the-valley may cause vomiting, diarrhea, irregular heart rhythm, and seizures.

According to Petplan’s claims data, lily ingestion cases rank as the most expensive claims. So just how much did it cost to treat these pets? Pet parents paid an average of $2,353 to save their best friend!* If you aren’t prepared to pay that sum, you may want to consider pet insurance protection.

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Are daffodils dangerous to pets?

Emerging with the onset of spring, daffodils contain the toxic chemical lycorine. Lycorine is in its most concentrated form in daffodil bulbs, so be sure to keep digging dogs far from the flower bed.

Eating any part of the flower however, can trigger severe vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, drooling, difficulty breathing and serious, irregular heart rhythm.

Are daisies pet-friendly?

Flowers belonging to the Asteraceae family (including chrysanthemums and mums), contain multiple toxins and irritants. To start, the sesquiterpene, lactones, and pyrethrins in the wildflower causes vomiting, diarrhea, excess salivation, difficulty with coordination and dermatitis.

Are shamrocks poisonous to cats and dogs?

Despite their bitter taste, pets may still munch on this Saint Patrick’s Day staple. This proves particularly unlucky for our dogs and cats as microscopic calcium oxalates are found throughout the plant. This toxic component often leads to upset stomachs, drooling or excess salivation, tremors, low blood calcium (hypocalcemia), bloody urine and acute kidney failure.

With countless varieties and colors, it’s best to keep your pet a safe distance away from all three-leafed clovers belonging to the Oxalis species.

Keep in mind these are just a few of the leafy dangers out there. If you suspect that your pet consumed something they shouldn’t, contact your veterinarian or the nearest veterinary emergency hospital immediately. You can also call a pet specific poison control center such as ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center or Pet Poison Helpline for additional guidance, but keep in mind that there is a consultation fee.

* According to Petplan claims data

Mar 3, 2020
Pet Health

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