10 Poisonous Plants That Can Harm Your Dog
One of the things every loving pet owner wants is for their dog to have a lovely yard to run and play in. We also like these yards to be something we can appreciate, with attractive plants and flowers placed artfully around the yard.
If you have dogs, though, you need to be aware of the many simple, unassuming plant species that can harm or kill your pet. While it’s impossible to list every dangerous plant out there, below you will find some of the top ten plants that pose a threat to your four-legged friends.
Lilies – Most species of lily are known to be highly toxic for pets, causing tremors, gastrointestinal problems, depression, kidney damage, and death, even if only a small amount is consumed.
Azaleas – Azaleas, and other plants in the Rhododendron genus, can be deadly to dogs, with even small doses causing vomiting, diarrhea, hypotension, leg paralysis, coma, and in many cases, death.
Rhubarb – Rhubarb leaves contain oxalate, which is linked to kidney failure and can, over an extended period of time, or if consumed in large quantities, be fatal to pets.
Sago Palm – This decorative plant has poisonous leaves, and extremely poisonous seeds. If your dog gets into this plant, he might exhibit vomiting, diarrhea, depression, seizures, and liver failure caused by toxins in the plant known as cycasin. It can be fatal, and even the smallest amounts ingested by your dog warrants an immediate trip to your vet.
Castor Beans – Another common ornamental plant, castor beans contain a toxin called ricin, which can cause severe abdominal pain, loss of appetite, and in more severe instances, twitching, tremors, seizures, coma, and death. Seeds will burn a dog’s mouth and throat, and can be lethal, even if just an ounce is consumed.
Bulbs of Flowers – The bulbs of flowers, such as tulips and daffodils, are not easily digested by dogs, and contain many toxins. If chewed or ingested, they can cause severe vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions, and even .
Morning Glory – This plant looks beautiful climbing up arbors and trellises, but if ingested by your pet, it may cause hallucinations and disorientation. The seeds are especially dangerous, and dogs suffering from hallucinations are at risk of hurting themselves or others.
Oleanders – A lovely but dangerous plant, oleanders contain cardiac glycosides, which can cause gastrointestinal tract irritation, abnormal cardiac function, hypothermia, uncoordinated movements, difficulty breathing and death due from heart failure.
English Ivy – Another climbing plant, English ivy can cause digestive problems in dogs, as well as labored breathing, abdominal pain, coma, and even death if ingested in large quantities or over extended periods of time.
Hemlock – A truly dangerous plant, hemlock should be kept out of your yard at all costs. It grows wild in some areas, so be sure to familiarize yourself with how it looks. If ingested, hemlock will cause dilated pupils, frothing at the mouth, and muscle spasms. Death can occur in as little as fifteen minutes after consumption, and is almost guaranteed to strike within two hours, so if your dog exhibits any of these signs, or if you suspect at all that he has eaten hemlock, rush him to your vet or emergency pet facility immediately.
Ask your vet for more detailed information on what kinds of plants might pose a threat to your dog. Be especially cautious if you know your dog is prone to digging and chewing. Make it a point to become familiar with dangerous plants, in case they grow in your neighborhood or local park.
For a much more extensive list and pictures of the offending plants, visit the ASPCA website (http://www.aspca.org/Pet-care/poison-control/Plants.aspx?plant_toxicity=toxic-to-dogs), an excellent resource for conscientious pet owners.
Making sure the plants in your yard are safe for is one of the best ways to ensure that a fun day of play doesn’t turn into a tragic nightmare. With just a bit of knowledge and thoughtful planning, you can ensure that weekends spent playing in the yard with your dog always have a happy ending.