Lifestyle

Cats and Plants: What to Pay Attention to

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Did you know that many indoor and outdoor plants are toxic to cats? Here are some of the most common shrubs to watch out for and suggestions for safer alternatives.

 

Common plants that are toxic to cats

Highly toxic plants:

  • Acorns
  • Conkers
  • Cycads
  • Daffodils
  • Laburnum
  • Lilies, including peace lily
  • Pieris
  • Rhododendron

Toxic plants:

  • Christmas trees
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Crocus
  • Fuchsia
  • Holly
  • Honeysuckle
  • Hyacinth
  • Ivy
  • Mistletoe
  • Roses
  • Tulips

*This list is only highlighting the most common offenders, not all toxic plants.

Cat-friendly shrubs

If you are looking to add some nature to your home, some plant retailers or online florists have a pet-friendly section of their website. Our favourite non-toxics to our furry friends are spider plants and calatheas.

Signs your cat has plant poisoning

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Drooling
  • Rash
  • Swelling
  • Tremoring
  • Twitching
  • Lethargy
  • Hot or cold body temperature
  • Drinking more than usual

*You may notice none or all of these signs if your cat has had a nibble on a toxic plant, so stay on your toes!

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    If you suspect that your cat might have been poisoned

    • Monitor your moggie - for any of the signs of toxicity
    • Contact your vet immediately - for advice or to book an emergency appointment
    • Try to scoop up any urine or poo samples into a small pot - these might be useful for your vet to test or inspect
    • If you saw the plant that your cat munched, take a sample with you to the vets
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    Remember that many plants, even those which are not toxic, can cause tummy upset to your moggie, if munched on.

    If in any doubt as to whether your cat has consumed something poisonous, you can contact the following 24-hour services: in the US, for paid advice contact the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435; in the UK, for paid advice contact the Animal Poison Line at 01202 509000. This usually costs £35-45 per call and is run by the Veterinary Poisons Information Service.

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