Fresh colorful flowers enhance the ambiance of a house, giving a lovely touch to any home. But cat guardians should be aware that many of these are toxic plants and can pose harm to kitties! Quite frankly, not all toxic plants are fatal when eaten, but most often than not, cats end up at the vet from sampling on toxic houseplants.
While Lily is widely known to be particularly poisonous to cats, many plants are dangerous if eaten. Seeds, pollen, needles, leaves and flowers can all be potentially harmful for cats. Often they ingest substances from toxic plants while grooming themselves due to seeds or pollen being trapped on their paws or in their fur.
Why Are Lilies Very Bad For Cats?
Although kitty may show little interest in eating them, it is extremely risky if they come into contact by rubbing their body against lilies’ flower pollen before licking their fur without thinking.
Easter Lily and Tiger Lily are a few types of toxic plants for your cats. All parts of lilies are poisonous to our furry friends. Even a bite of them can pose a lethal threat to their lives from severe kidney failure. The best way to save felines from lilies is by completely keeping it off your property. To clarify, by not purchasing one at all. If you still want to purchase these flowers, make sure to keep the gorgeous collection in a room where your cats have no access to.
Keep Your Cat Safe From Toxic Plants
Cats are generally finicky about what they put in their mouth. Especially for outdoor cats with freedom to explore other things other than sampling peculiar vegetation, poisoning from toxic plants rarely happens. However, confined indoor cats that are inquisitive and bored are likely to play with and chew on toxic plants, thus becoming sick. Despite this, they can also accidentally consume toxic pollen when grooming themselves.
It’s cats’ instinct to eat grass as they need it to cleanse their digestion, on top of liking to chew on plants for the sake of curiosity. When there is none, they will turn to less decent bouquet plants like particularly hazardous Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia) and lilies. For this, you can provide them cat-friendly plants like catnip, cat thyme or mint. But keep the portions small. While it’s normal for them to be tipsy or wild after nibbling on the catnip, excessive consumption in a short time may lead to vomiting and diarrhea.
To avoid possible poisoning cases for outdoor cats, work with your neighbours to remove toxic plants from the neighborhood by informing the list of toxic plants written in both common and scientific names. This can ensure that any additions to the gardens will be safe. Be sure also to keep uprooted plants and hedge clippings out of your cat’s vicinity. This is because the sap of damaged stem may trigger skin irritation. Further, roots, bulbs, and rhizomes can cause the most hazard on cats once ingested.
Does Spraying Toxic Plants Work To Stop Cats From Eating Them?
Using a taste-deterrent spray on your houseplants may work as cats don’t like the taste, but it’s a tedious process that requires you to reapply daily to keep them at bay. Most cat guardians struggle to water their plants weekly, so undoubtedly, they will most likely fail at spraying the plants every day. Furthermore, plants that are more porous like ferns, begonia, and moss, seem to suffer in health worse than those that aren’t. In short, it’s not healthy for the plants in spite of their toxicity. The optimum solution is definitely by avoiding them altogether.
Before choosing amongst beautiful petals to get for a bouquet decoration, or to plant in your outdoor garden, you should first know the flowers that can cause hazard to your kitties. Do keep note, just because the plant in your garden is not in our list, doesn’t mean they’re not one of toxic plants for cats. For more details of all plants, ASPCA may be able to give you a more comprehensive description.
175 Toxic Plants For Cats
*Contact can cause skin irritation
^severely toxic plants
Indoor Toxic Plants
1. Aloe Vera
2. Arum Lily (Calla Lily, White Arum, Pig Lily, Trumpet Lily, Garden Calla, Florist’s Calla)
3. Amaryllis (Belladonna Lily, Cape Belladonna, Saint Joseph Lily, Naked Lady)
4. Asian Lily (Asiatic Lily)
5. Asparagus Fern (Asparagus Setaceus, Emerald Fern, Emerald Feather, Sprenger’s Fern, Lace Fern, Plumosa Fern, Shatavari, Racemose Asparagus)
This plant is toxic to cats and dogs. Repetitive dermal exposure can possibly cause allergic dermatitis, while berry ingestion can lead to abdominal pain or vomiting.
6. Baby’s Breath (Maiden’s Breath)
7. Barbados Lily (Amaryllis, Lily Of The Palace, Fire Lily, Ridderstjerne)
The most poisonous part of this plant is the bulbs. Small ingestion can cause vomiting, diarrhea and salivation. However, big amount of consumption may risks convulsions, tremors, low blood pressure, as well as cardiac arrhythmias.
Beware of the tubers as they are the most toxic.
9. Castor Oil Plant (Ricinus)
10. Carnation (Pink, Sweet William, Wild Carnation)
11. Christmas Cherry (Jerusalem Cherry, Solanum Capsicastrum)
12. Ceriman (Monstera Deliciousa, Swiss Cheese Plant, Cut-Leaf Philodendron, Mexican Breadfruit, Hurricane Plant)
14. Corn Plant (Cornstalk Plant, Dragon tree, Dracaena, Ribbon plant)
15. Croton (Codiaeum)
16. Clivia Lily (Clivy, Cape Clivia, Caffre Lily, Klivia)
The most poisonous part of Clivia Lily is the bulbs.
17. Devil’s Ivy (Money Plant, Epipremnum Aureum, Pothos, Taro Vine, Golden Pothos, Ivy Arum)
18. Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia, Charming Dieffenbachia, Tropic Snow, Giant Dumb Cane, Exotica, Exotica Perfection, Spotted Dumb Cane)^
19. Easter Lily^
20. Elephant’s Ear (Taro, Malanga, Seagull, Stoplight, Mother-In-Law Plant, Texas Wonder, Pink Cloud, Angel Wing, Candidum, Exposition, Fancy-Leaved Caladium)
Despite being rich in fiber, this toxic plant is in no way part of a healthy diet for your kitties. Its leaves are poisonous to animals, except a few wild birds and koala.
22. Flamingo Flower (Flamingo Lily, Oilcloth Flower, Tail Flower, Painter’s Pallet, Pigtail Plant)
23. Florida Beauty (Spotted Dracaena, Gold Dust Dracaena)
24. Hypoestes Phyllostachya
Despite their sweet-smelling blooms, these bulb flowers contain alkaloids that may be harmful for your cats.
26. Jade Plant (Baby Jade, Jade Tree, Dwarf Rubber Plant, Japanese Rubber Plant, Chinese Rubber Plant)
27. Chinese Jade (Silver Dollar, Silver Jade Plant)
This type of succulents is perfect for those who do not have the talents for growing plants as they are not only pretty, but are also low-maintenance. Unfortunately, jade is poisonous for cat guardians to keep.
29. Mandrake (Mandragora Officinarum)
This toxic plant bears a mythical reputation since centuries. But its infamous toxicity isn’t a mere folklore. As a matter of fact, the mandrake root is highly poisonous to both cats and hoomans.
30. Mistletoe (Viscum, American Mistletoe)^
The tradition of kissing under the mistletoe sounds sweet and romantics. But for cats, these plants do not bring them everlasting romance, except painful health issues. After triggering symptoms like low heart rate, excess thirst, seizures then coma, mistletoe would eventually lead to death once in contact with felines.
31. Nephthytis (Arrowhead Vine, African Evergreen, Green Gold Naphthysis, Trileaf Wonder)
32. Oleander (Nerium Oleander)^
Even in tiny amounts, this deadly plant can kill a cat. Every part is incredibly toxic and may lead to death.
33. Pencil Cactus (Crown of Thorns)
This toxic plant is actually not as poisonous as it is known for.
34. Sago Palm^
Its seeds (nuts) are the most poisonous part of the plant. Ingestion of just one can cause depression, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, seizures, serious gastrointestinal symptoms, and liver failure.
36. Star of Bethlehem (Ornithogalum)
38. Umbrella Plant (Cyperus Alternifolius)
39. Zebra Plant (Aphelandra)
Outdoor Toxic Plants
4. American False Pennyroyal
7. Angel’s Trumpets (Brugmansia)
8. Angel Wings (Caladium)
9. Apricot (Prunus Armeniaca)
11. Asclepias (Milkweed)
While planting milkweed in gardens is a great way to help nourish monarch butterflies, the fruit of this plant is toxic to both hoomans and wildlife.
13. Avocado (Persea Americana)
14. Azalea (Rhododendron, Rosebay)
Though small, the whole parts of Azalea is poisonous to cats. Pet Poison Helpline clarifies that this toxic plant may cause hypotension, and cardiovascular, gastrointestinal or central nervous system issues in cats.
15. Baneberry (Actaea Rubra)
16. Bird of Paradise Flower (Strelitzia, Bird’s Tongue Flower, Crane flower)
Poisoning on cats is mainly from contact with the fruit and seeds.
17. Black-eyed Susan (Thunbergia Alata)
18. Bloodroot (Sanguinaria Canadensis)
19. Box (Buxus Sempervirens)
20. Scotch Broom (Cytisus Scoparius)
22. Buckthorn (Rhamnus)
23. Burning Bush (Dictamnus Albus)
24. Buttercup (Ranunculus Asiaticus)
25. Bird of Paradise Shrub (Caesalpinia, Poinciana Gilliesii)
These toxic plants are more poisonous than their cousin, Bird of Paradise Flower.
26. Caltha Palustris*
27. Cardboard Palm (Zamia Furfuracea, Cycad)
29. Cornflower (Centaurea Cyanus)
31. Cherry Laurel (Prunus Laurocerasus)
32. Chincherinchee (Ornithogalum Thyrsoides)
33. Chrysanthemum (Dendranthema)*
35. Columbine (Aquilegia)
36. Corncockle (Agrostemma Githago)
38. Crocus (Colchicum)
39. X Cupressocyparis Leylandii*
ASPCA includes it as one of poisonous plants that can potentially cause horrible vomiting to the point of death. However, some survive after eating it, because they do not eat the tuber or root, where the poisonous compound, cyclamine, mostly is.
42. Daffodil (Narcissus)
The deep and yellow coloring of these flowers look incredible as they bloom together during spring. But don’t let the good look deceive you. A study by Canadian Veterinary Journal found that daffodils can be poisonous to cats. It will cause them stomach upset and vomiting, worse if pods, foliage or flower is eaten.
43. Daphne Odora*
44. Delonix Regia
45. Desert Azalea (Desert Rose, Sabi Star, Mock Azalea, Kudu Lily, Impala Lily, Adenium)
46. Bleeding Hearts (Dicentra)
47. Tower Of Jewels (Echium)
48. Elder (Sambucus)
49. European Pennyroyal (Mentha Pulegium)
50. Spurge/Poinsettia (Euphorbia Pulcherrima)
ASPCA lists this plant as toxic to cats, however it’s not as poisonous as the media makes it out to be. In fact, cats chew on it so much with little harm. If anything, the ‘toxic plant’ itself is full of bite marks with oozing milky white sap. Naturally, you won’t want to have poinsettia in your house only for the cats to decorate it.
51. Black Locust (False Acacia, Robinia)
53. Flax (Linum)
54. Foxglove (Digitalis)
55. Alder Buckthorn (Rhamnus Frangula)
56. Franciscan Rain Tree (Kiss-Me-Quick, Today, Yesterday, Tomorrow, Morning-Noon-And-Night, Lady-Of-The-Night)
57. California Glory (Fremontodendron)*
58. Wintergreen (Gaultheria)
59. Giant Hogweed (Heracleum Mantegazzianum)
60. Giant Dracaena (Grass Palm, Palm Lily)
61. Glory Lily (Gloriosa Superba)^
63. Hosta (Funkia, Plantain Lily)
64. Helleborus* (Hellebore, Christmas Rose, Easter Rose, Lenten Rose)
65. Hemlock (Conium Maculatum)
66. Henbane (Hyoscyamus)
68. Holly (Ilex)
69. Horse Chestnut (Aesculus Hippocastanum)
This toxic plant contains similar toxin in cyanide that can quickly cause oxygen deprivation which lead to death.
71. Indian Hemp (Hashish, Marijuana)
73. Ivy (Hedera, English Ivy, Needlepoint Ivy, Glacier Ivy, California Ivy, Sweetheart Ivy)*
The berries are less toxic than the foliage. Overconsuming them will cause abdominal pain, vomiting, hypersalivation, or diarrhea on cats, dogs and horses.
74. Jasmine (Jasminum)
75. Juniperus Sabina
79. Larkspur (Delphinium)
80. Wood Lily (Lilium Philadelphicum)
81. Lily of The Valley (Convallaria Majalis)^
83. Lords and Ladies (Cuckoo Pint, Arum)
85. Madagascar Periwinkle (Catharanthus Roseus)
86. Marigold (Tagetes)
87. Melia Azedarach
88. Mirabilis Jalapa
89. Monkshood (Wolfsbane, Aconitum Napellus)
90. Morning Glory (Ipomoea)
91. Deadly Nightshade (Atropa)
92. Woody Nightshade (Solanum)
93. Oak (Quercus)
94. Onion (Allium)
Onions are a staple of daily meals around the globe, especially in India and China, the top two countries that produce onions. But this plant is toxic to many animals, including dogs and cats.
97. Orange Day Lily
99. Peach (Prunus Persica)
100. Peony (Paeonia)
102. Lacy Tree Philodendron
104. Pokeweed (Phytolacca)
105. Poppy (Papaver)
106. Primula Obconica*
107. Primrose (Primula Vulgaris)
108. Privet (Ligustrum)
109. Rosary Pea (Abrus Precatorius)
110. Rubber Plant (Ficus, Fig, Weeping Fig)
112. Rue (Ruta Graveolens)
115. Skunk Cabbage (Lysichiton)^
Even in small bites, this toxic plant cause a cat’s mouth to burn and swell, on top of a choking sensation. Consuming a lot of the leave, n extremes cases, can be fatal.
116. Snowdrop (Galanthus)
118. Solomon’s Seal (Polygonatum)
119. Spindle Tree (Euonymus)
120. Spring Parsley (Cymopterus Watsonii)
121. Stargazer Lily
122. Sumac (Rhus)*
123. Sweet Pea (Everlasting Pea, Lathyrus, Perennial Pea)
126. Thorn Apple (Datura)*
128. Tobacco (Nicotiana)
129. Tomato (Lycopersicon)*
The fruit of the this plant is harmless to kitties, but its leaves and stem can be toxic. Add this to your list of hoomans food not to give to your furry friends.
130. Tulip (Tulipa)*
131. Tiger Lily^
133. Water Hyacinth
135. Yew (Taxus)
Signs Of Toxic Plants Poisoning On Cats
Different plants have different health risks to kitties, some a lot more dangerous compared to others; plants with more damage from insects or drought may have increased toxicity. Moreover, depending on their size and quantities of consumption, symptoms also vary with each individual cat. Having said that, symptoms of toxic plant poisoning in cats may range from light skin irritations to severe issues affecting the heart or kidneys.
Symptoms Of Poisoning In Cats
Firstly, symptoms of irritation include itchiness, scratching or licking, red, watery and/or dilated eyes, irritation around the mouth, swelling, or pale gums. Secondly, there are gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting or diarrhea. Remember, if they vomit hours after eating, many won’t connect their sickness to eating the toxic plants, so they are likely to keep eating it.
Above all, your cats can experience more dire symptoms like low body temperature, fever, depression, staggering (muscle weakness), hyper salivation (drooling), difficulties swallowing, breathing difficulties, irregular heartbeat, or frequent urination.
Visit the vet ASAP!
If you suspect your felines has ingested severely toxic plants as we highlighted, bring them to the vet immediately. Even if you have not seen your cats chewing on any, but notice them exhibiting any of the symptoms above, at least contact a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Do not wait for signs of ailments to show as by the time they do, it may be too late. If possible, bring along the plant itself or its part that have caused the poisoning for better identification and effective treatment.
Vets Now emphasizes that, unless a professional advises you to do so, never induce your cat to vomit. This may present more danger than leaving the toxin in their stomach. This is why it’s better to bring them to a vet as they will perform a safe exam and do the required blood test before diagnosis.
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