Pet owners warned over poisonous plants

Caroline Cassidy

Having finally been blessed with a summer this year, many pet owners will be out in the garden enjoying the good weather with their dog or cat. But experts have warned that your beautiful blooms could cause serious health problems for four-legged friends.

Owners warned over pet poisonous plants
Owners warned over pet poisonous plants

Pic: Getty

Common garden plants such as lilies, poinsettias, rhododendrons and yew can have life-threatening consequences for dogs and cats, while in the vegetable patch, onion, garlic, leek and chives can also be toxic to pets.

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Lilies, for example, are potentially fatal for our feline friends, with some 261 cases recorded, while seasonal poinsettias can cause vomiting in both cats and dogs. Rhododendrons could cause cardiovascular collapse in dogs, cats, sheep and cattle, with vomiting and diarrhoea two of the symptoms. And just 15g of a daffodil bulb can be fatal for your dog or cat.

Guy Barter, from the Royal Horticultural Society, advised: "Because the risk is so widespread, the best approach is for pet owners to teach their animal not to eat garden plants or ornamental flowers.

"If you have a pet cat that is mostly housebound, then avoid bringing in lilies and poinsettias."

The research into the toxic effects of plants on pets was published in the Veterinary Journal, and the report suggested that a Europe-wide database for all plant-related poisonings should be set up to help avoid incidents.
In the meantime, a British Veterinary Association spokesman suggested: "The important thing is to know the animal. If they explore the world with their mouths, make sure you avoid planting any potentially poisonous plants.

"Should an owner suspect their pet has eaten something toxic, they should call their vet for immediate assistance."

Are you fully aware of the plants that can be poisonous to your pet? Leave your comments below...