plants poisonous

Are plants poisonous to dogs and cats? 6 toxic plants to watch out for this spring

Spring is a colourful, fresh and all round lovely time of year – there’s no denying that! But as the birds begin chirping and the flowers begin to blossom, your four-legged friend could end up in some serious danger if they come into contact with the wrong plant or flower.

Let’s take a look at 6 plants that are poisonous to dogs and cats.

Buttercups

buttercups

Buttercups are toxic to dogs, cats and horses. Although they have a bitter taste that will put dogs and cats off eating them, your horse may well indulge in some buttercups if their pasture is full of them. If you have buttercups growing in your garden, be mindful that the pollen may get on your dog or cat’s fur when they’re out playing, and they could ingest it by cleaning their own paws.

Symptoms of buttercup poisoning include:

  • Drooling
  • Blisters in the mouth
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • General weakness
  • Tremors
  • Seizures
  • Paralysis (although this is rare)

Daffodils

daffodils

In much the same way as buttercups, Daffodils are toxic to dogs and cats, and you should be careful if you have them growing on your lawn or if you’re walking your dog through a field that’s full of them. Daffodils contain small crystals that can cause severe tissue irritation.

Symptoms of daffodil poisoning include:

  • Nausea
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Increased heart rate
  • Abnormal breathing
  • Abdominal pain

Tulips

tulips

Okay, so these are less likely to be dotted all over your lawn, but do take care if you’re planning to plant tulips in the garden. The most poisonous part of a tulip is the bulb, so your dog can become ill if they’re digging up your prized flowers while they’re still underground.

Symptoms of tulip poisoning include:

  • Nausea
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Increased heart rate
  • Abnormal breathing

Cyclamen

cyclamen

Dogs can’t always tell the difference between beautiful houseplants and tasty treats, so if you plan to keep a houseplant in your kitchen or living room, make sure you store it somewhere that your dog or cat can’t reach.

When you leave the house, make sure your pet and your cyclamen plant are kept in separate rooms.

Symptoms of cyclamen poisoning include:

  • Nausea
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Increased heart rate
  • Seizures

Oleander

oleander

Every part of the oleander plant is poisonous to dogs and cats. Ingesting it can have a nasty, even a fatal effect on the heart. Oleander plants can grow quite high, so be careful that your dog or cat doesn’t get curious and have a taste.

Symptoms of oleander poisoning include:

  • Nausea
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Abnormal heart rate
  • Seizures
  • Tremors
  • Collapse
  • Death

Lilies

lilies

Lilies are particularly toxic to cats. The pollen gets onto their skin when they’re playing out in the garden, and they ingest it when they come to clean themselves later on. Even a small ingestion can cause serious kidney problems in cats, which can be fatal if left untreated.

Symptoms of lily poisoning include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Hiding
  • Vomiting
  • Dehydration
  • Increased or decreased urination

What to do if your pet displays any symptoms, or if they ingest a poisonous plant

If your pet displays any symptoms, or if you know they’ve eaten something they shouldn’t, you should contact your vet right away.

Read more about common dog poisons and cat poisons to stay away from here!

To find your nearest recommended vet or pet clinic, use our Find a Vet page.