Plants That are Poisonous to Your Pet

Posted April 27th, 2012
by Elizabeth Adams (no comments)

Keeping plants in your home and garden is a great way to refresh a space, but you should be cautious if you own pets. While some plants are commonly known to be poisonous to pets, there are other plants that are often used in gardens and indoor decor that people do not realize are harmful to animals. Avoid a sick pet by learning more about which plants are poisonous to your pet.


Household Plants That Can Poison Your Pet

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) points out that aloe vera can cause diarrhea in pets. Although it is not life threatening, it is still a good idea to keep aloe vera out of reach of your pets.

Calla lilies are popular for people who favor modern decor. Unfortunately, this plant can be extremely toxic to pets. Depending on the amount that the pet ingests, calla lilies can be fatal to a pet. Peace lilies are another type of indoor lily that can harm pets. The symptoms of ingesting peace lilies involve a swelling of the mouth and tongue.

Be cautious when you receive plants as gifts during the holidays. Poinsettias can cause a mild allergic reaction in pets. According to the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine, the biggest concern during the holidays is mistletoe. Mistletoe can cause serious reactions for pets and may even be fatal. English ivy is a plant that is commonly used for indoor wreaths. The plant can cause gastrointestinal distress in pets and may lead to diarrhea, vomiting and extreme stomach pain.


Outdoor Plants That Can Poison Your Pet

Earth Clinic lists a variety of plants that could cause harm to your pet. If you are gardening while your pet is outside, make sure to keep an eye on your plants and bulbs. Tulip bulbs can cause heart issues and convulsions in pets. Lilies are known to be very poisonous to cats. Cats that have eaten the plant have suffered from kidney failure.

Other flowering plants that people often include in a garden that can be harmful to pets include azaleas, oleander and daffodils. If you live in a warmer climate, you may have sago palm in your garden. This plant can cause serious stomach distress, vomiting, liver failure and death.


Protecting Your Pet From Poisonous Plants

Mother Nature Network suggests they pet owners become familiar with different kinds of plants and how they can affect pets. If you do choose to keep a plant that is poisonous to pets in your home or garden, make sure that the plant is out of reach of your pets.

Keep an emergency fund for pet health expenses in case your pet has a medical emergency. Some pet owners find themselves unable to pay for the treatment that their pet needs after being poisoned by plants. Even if you make sure that your pet cannot reach dangerous plants, there is always a possibility.

The most proactive method of keeping your pet protected from poisonous plants is choosing not to keep these kinds of plants in your home or garden.


Plants That Harm Pets and Humans

While the beautiful flowers of the oleander make it a perfect addition to a garden, it is considered to be one of the most poisonous plants in the world. Green Buzz warns that one leaf from this plant is capable of killing a person. Ingesting oleander can quickly cause a person’s nervous system to shut down. The plant has a similar effect on pets, and even less of the plant can be fatal based on the smaller body weight of most pets.

One popular addition to gardens in California is the castor bean plant. This plant is extremely harmful to both people and pets when ingested. One bean from this plant can kill a person or a pet, and there is no known antidote for castor bean plants.

These are just two of the most harmful plants to people and pets. Many indoor and outdoor plants that cause reactions in pets can hurt people. People with small children should take care to keep dangerous plants out of reach to avoid accidental ingestion.


Has Your Pet Already Been Poisoned?

If your pet has already been poisoned by a plant, the first step is to stay calm. Panicking wastes valuable time that you could be using to help your pet. Seattle PI highlights the importance of contacting a veterinarian immediately. You may forgo the phone call if there is an emergency clinic in your immediate area that you can take your pet to as soon as possible. Before heading out the door with your pet, quickly try to determine what kind of poisonous plant the animal ate. This information may help the vet determine how to treat your pet.

Take the a sample of the poisonous plant that your pet ingested if possible. It is important to avoid trying to medicate your pet or make them throw up. The vet will determine if medication or induced vomiting is necessary.

Make sure that you are familiar with dangerous plants so that you can protect your pet from poisoning. Keep plants that may cause adverse reactions out of the reach of your pets, and make sure that you have a plan in case of accidental ingestion. If your pet does ingest a poisonous plant, stay calm and seek the advice of a veterinarian. Sometimes the best solution is avoiding plants that can cause harm completely.

Categories: Home Safety Tips

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