Plants Poisonous to Cats

Are some plants poisonous to cats?

Cats love to explore and experience new things. Particularly, cats love sniffing and chewing on plants. Unfortunately, some plants contain toxins that pose danger to cats.

As of today (2022) ASPCA, The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, lists 424 plants that are poisonous to cats.

It’s quite unlikely that the cat’s instinct would allow a cat to eat a toxic plant. Nevertheless, it’s still worth keeping the poisonous plants away from your pet.

If you’re worried that your cat will eat poisonous plants while outside, you can keep her on a harness. Here is a list that will help you to choose the best cat harness no escape.

The infographic below shows the most beautiful plants and flowers that are at the same time poisonous to cats. Be careful not to give your furry friend too much exposure to these beauties.

Plants Poisonous to Cats – Infographic

plants poisonous to cats

Which house plants are poisonous to cats?

The most popular house plants that are poisonous to cats are:

1. Dieffenbachia

Dieffenbachia cat plant

Clinical Signs: Oral irritation, intense burning, and irritation of mouth, tongue, and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty swallowing.

2. Dracaena

Dracaena cat plant

Clinical Signs: Vomiting (occasionally with blood), depression, anorexia, hypersalivation, dilated pupils.

3. Aloe

aloe cat plant

Clinical Signs: Vomiting, lethargy, diarrhea. The gel is considered edible.

To find out more about which parts of aloe vera are toxic and which ones are safe for cats, read our article Is Aloe Safe for Cats?

4. Jade Plant

Jade Plant cat plant

Clinical Signs: Vomiting, depression, incoordination.

5. Philodendron

Philodendron cat plant

Clinical Signs: Oral irritation, pain, and swelling of mouth, tongue, and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing.

Which garden plants are poisonous to cats?

The most popular garden plants that are poisonous to cats are:

1. Chamomile

Chamomile cat plant

Clinical Signs: Contact dermatitis, vomiting, diarrhea, anorexia, allergic reactions. Long-term use can lead to bleeding tendencies.

Although chamomile is stated by ASPCA as toxic to cats, the herb given in small doses and in its diluted form can have a lot of health benefits for cats. To find out more, read our article Is Chamomile Safe for Cats?

2. Cyclamen

cyclamen cat plant

Clinical Signs: Salivation, vomiting, diarrhea. Following large ingestions of tubers: heart rhythm abnormalities, seizures, death.

3. Daffodil

Daffodil cat plant

Clinical Signs: Vomiting, salvation, diarrhea; large ingestions cause convulsions, low blood pressure, tremors, and cardiac arrhythmias. Bulbs are the most poisonous part.

4. Hyacinth

Hyacinth cat plant

Clinical Signs: Vomiting, diarrhea, dermatitis, and allergic reactions. Bulbs contain the highest amount of toxins.

5. Ivy

Ivy cat plant

Clinical Signs: Oral irritation, intense burning, and irritation of mouth, tongue, and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty swallowing.

6. Lavender

lavender cat plant

Clinical Signs: Nausea, vomiting, inappetence.

To find out more about lavender and cats, read our article Is Lavender Safe for Cats?

7. Lily

lily cat plant

Clinical Signs: kidney failure.

8. Lily of the Valley

Lily of the Valley cat plant

Clinical Signs: Vomiting, irregular heartbeat, low blood pressure, disorientation, coma, seizures.

How to protect your houseplants from cats?

Cat eating grass

The grass is an important ingredient in the cat’s diet. It helps to regurgitate ingested fur. If an indoor cat doesn’t have access to grass, she will be desperate to nibble on just any plant she has access to.

If you don’t want to get rid of some of your toxic house plants, but you are still worried that your cat will eat them, provide your cat with a small box of grass so that she has something healthy to chew on and she is not tempted to eat your poisonous plants.

You may also try spraying your plants with diluted lemon juice and see if that works to deter your cat.

cat eating grass

What are the symptoms of cat poisoning?

According to PetMED, the symptoms of cat poisoning are as follows:

– Difficulty breathing (if the airways are affected)

– Drooling or difficulty swallowing (if the mouth, throat, or esophagus is affected)

– Vomiting (if the stomach or intestines are affected)

– Diarrhea (if the intestines or colon are affected)

– Excessive drinking and urinating (if the kidneys are affected)

– Fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat (if the heart is affected)

 What to do if your cat gets poisoned?

If you think your cat got poisoned, seek immediate advice from a veterinary professional.

In the meantime, if you think the irritant may still be on the cat’s fur, make a temporary Elizabethan collar from cardboard and put it on your cat immediately. It will prevent your cat from grooming itself and potentially consuming even more of a poisonous irritant.

 

Sources used in this article:

Complete Cat Care Manual, Dr Andrew Edney, 2006

Cats 500 Questions Answered, Dr David Sands, 2005

Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants, ASPCA

Poisonous Plants For Cats, PetMD

 

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2 thoughts on “Plants Poisonous to Cats

  • July 9, 2017 at 11:11 pm
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    Amazing article! Very helpful. Now I understand why my cats reacting in serval ways for many of my plants. Thank you so much!

    Reply
    • July 9, 2017 at 11:19 pm
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      Hi Cate,
      Thank you for your comment. It’s my pleasure to help!
      All the best to you and your cat 🙂
      Carl

      Reply

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