Garden & Landscape Tips

There are some everyday houseplants that may be hazardous to dogs and cats. Some symptoms are mild and don’t cause long-term damage to a pet’s health. Others, though, can be deadly. The key is knowing which are dangerous and which are not.

dracena
Dracena
© iStockphoto.com
peace lily
Peace lily
© Fotolia.com

Of the 165,000 calls to the Animal Poison Control Center in the last year, 1,750 related to possible plant poisonings, reports the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Here are the Top toxic houseplants listed in ASPCA reports:

Peace lily

Peace lily (Spathiphylum) causes mouth swelling, difficulty in swallowing, digestive problems and renal failure.

Dracena

Dracena (Dracaena) induces vomiting, and causes weight loss, increased salivation, and depression. In cats, ingesting the plant parts can cause eyes to dilate.

easter lily
Easter lily
© Netherlands Flower Bulb Information Center
jade plant
Jade plant
© Fotolia.com

Jade plant

Jade plant (Crassula) causes vomiting and depression.

Easter lily

Lily (Lilium) — Lilies, including those in a bouquet, can be deadly to cats. Even the slightest exposure to lily flowers, leaves, stems or pollen may cause kidney failure and death in cats. All parts of the plant are poisonous, including the pollen (remove anthers to avoid this), which sometimes can fall on a cat’s fur and be ingested through grooming. Dogs too can be affected by exposure to lilies, but it usually isn’t deadly.

poinsettias
Poinsettias
© Purdue University
philodendron
Philodendron
© iStockpohoto.com

Philodendron

Philodendron irritates lips, tongue and mouth. The more of the plant that is consumed, the more toxic it becomes to the pet.

Poinsettias

Poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima) has white, latex sap that may irritate the mouth and stomach, and can sometimes cause vomiting. The ASPCA says poinsettia is less toxic than commonly believed. Large quantities need to be consumed to cause significant health issues.

aloe vera
Aloe vera
© iStockphoto.com
dumb cane
Dumb cane plant
© iStockphoto.com

Dumb cane

Dumb cane (Dieffenbachia) irritates and semi-paralyses the mouth, tongue, and lips temporarily, causing excessive drooling, difficulty in swallowing, vomiting. Bark and meow may sound muffled or strange, a symptom that gives dumb cane its common name.

Aloe vera

Aloe vera causes vomiting, depression, tremors, diarrhea, and discolored urine.

Weeping fig

mother-in-law-tongue
Mother-in-law tongue
© iStockphoto.com
weeping fig
Weeping fig
© iStockphoto.com

Weeping fig (Ficus benjamina) causes dermatitis, mouth irritation, salivation, and vomiting.

Mother-in-law tongue

Mother-in-law tongue or snake (Sansevieria) causes nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

The ASPCA has a more complete list of plants that are toxic and non-toxic to dogs and cats. If you have toxic plants, you have couple of choices — you can get rid of the plants, keep them out of reach of cats and dogs, or train the animals to ignore the plants. If you have any concerns about a particular plant, please check with your veterinarian.

Veterinarians also advise pet owners to keep handy the ASPCA’s Poison Control Center toll-free number, (888) 426-4435, and web site in case your pet ingests plants in the home or garden.

For Customer Service Call 1-800-233-1067 or Email Us