They may look pretty, but they may also be dangerous! Here are a few common plants poisonous to cats.
It doesn’t make much sense for your carnivorous feline to be tempted to nosh on some houseplants, but he probably will, for whatever reason that drives him to do so. This makes it harder for you to decorate your home with lovely plants throughout the seasons, from holly and mistletoe during Christmastime to lilies and daffodils in the spring. Not only will your cat potentially destroy these pretty flowers, but he will also quickly regret his decision in eating them because they are actually toxic.
Many houseplants that may seem safe are dangerous to felines. Knowing which types to avoid will help you decorate your home while resting assured that your kitty will be fine, whether he gets some pollen on himself or he actually consumes parts of the plants.
Below are just five indoor plants poisonous to cats – but bear in mind that there are many more, so doing a good amount of research is imperative if you like keeping live plants.
Any part of a lily, right down to the pollen, can poison your cat, making it one of the plants you should definitely keep out of your home. Symptoms of ingestion include lethargy, loss of appetite, and vomiting. Getting your pet immediate veterinary attention is imperative, as the toxicity will continue to spread throughout the body, leading to kidney damage and death.
Azaleas and rhododendrons are toxic to cats whether they are grown in the garden or brought inside as a houseplant. Excessive drooling, loss of appetite, digestive upset that includes colic and diarrhea, weakness, and loss of coordination are symptoms associated with ingestion of these plants. Leg paralysis and a weakened heart rate are also common. Left untreated, a cat can go into a coma and die within days.
Although it is one of the most popular flowers to celebrate the return of springtime, the tulip is toxic to cats, especially when they ingest the bulbs. Severe gastrointestinal upset is one of the first symptoms associated with consumption of this plant, but other signs include loss of appetite, drooling, and convulsions. The central nervous system will be adversely affected, as will the cardiovascular system.
Every part of the foxglove plant is toxic to felines. Excessive salivation and vomiting are likely to be the first symptoms associated with ingestion. Initially, the pulse may become stronger but slow down at the same time. Later, it may become weaker and beat more rapidly. This can lead to shock, hypotension, and collapse. Your cat may also become delirious, and he may slip into a coma. This plant is so dangerous it can ultimately lead to the death of your cat, so immediate veterinary treatment is required to save him.
Cyclamen is a popular and pretty flowering houseplant that is dangerous to felines. Symptoms that are associated with ingestion of this plant include excessive salivation, diarrhea, and vomiting. If your cat gets a hold of a lot of tubers and eats them, he will experience heart arrhythmias and seizures that can become fatal.
Again, this is not a complete list of indoor plants poisonous to cats, so always do your research before bringing a new plant into your home. There are actually many beautiful feline-friendly houseplants you can include in your décor, but to be absolutely sure your kitty will leave your plants alone, place them in an area that’s out of his reach. This will keep them looking lovely and prevent any potential side effects associated with ingestion of the plant, no matter how mildly toxic it is.
Lisa Selvaggio volunteers in animal rescue, caring for cats of all ages and learning their many quirks. She also holds a certification in feline nutrition and continues to study holistic health for pets. She enjoys writing about pet related topics to help other pet parents give their fur babies the best care possible.
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