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Common Plants That Are Poisonous to Pets

Common Plants That Are Poisonous to Pets

When it comes to our pets, we want to do everything we can to protect them and their health. That includes knowing what common items in our homes and yards can be potentially toxic to them. But when it comes to plants, there are so many different species! It can be difficult to know which ones might be dangerous for our furry friends. 

That’s why Thomas Labs® is here to help! We’ve compiled a list of some of the most common plants that are toxic to dogs and cats. 


There are numerous different kinds of lilies. Some are poisonous to pets, while others aren’t, which can make it difficult to remember which ones are benign or dangerous. Lilies can be dangerous for dogs, but they are typically more toxic for cats. 

According to the Pet Poison Helpline, some lilies cause minor symptoms, such as irritation to the mouth, pharynx, and esophagus. These include peace lily, Peruvian lily, and calla lily. 

However, some lilies can be potentially fatal, including daylilies, tiger lilies, asiatic lilies, Easter lilies, and Japanese show lilies. These are all especially toxic to cats. Ingesting the leaves or petals of these plants can result in kidney failure. 

Sago Palm 

The sago palm is a popular shrub in areas with a temperate climate. It can live either indoors or outdoors. According to the American Kennel Club, this shrub is considered one of the most toxic plants for dogs

The entire plant can be toxic, including the bark and leaves, but the seeds are especially toxic. Ingesting this plant can result in diarrhea, vomiting, bloody stools, seizures, liver failure, and even death. 


Oleander is another popular ornamental shrub, particularly on the west coast. All parts of the plant are toxic to pets. Because oleander contains cardiac glycosides, ingesting this shrub can cause abnormal heart rate and rhythm. Other symptoms can include diarrhea, vomiting, drooling, seizures, and even death. 


Tulips generally bloom in the spring, and they are available in a variety of bright colors. While the leaves can cause gastrointestinal upset in dogs, the bulbs are the most toxic part of the plant. Symptoms can include vomiting, drooling, and mouth irritation. If numerous bulbs are ingested, it can lead to increased heart rate and irregular breathing. 

Lily of the Valley 

Lilies of the valley are popular garden plants and well-known for their white bell-shaped flowers. However, they can be very toxic to pets. Ingesting this plant can cause abnormal heart rate and rhythm, diarrhea, vomiting, low blood pressure, and seizures.


Azaleas, also known as rhododendrons, are common flowering shrubs that are often used in landscaping across the country. Eating a little of these shrubs may cause an upset stomach, while eating a lot of them can cause vomiting, diarrhea, irregular heart rate and rhythm, shock, paralysis, and even death. 

Ivy (Including English Ivy)

Ivy is commonly seen in landscaping, and while it’s pretty to look at, it’s dangerous for pets. Although not usually lethal, ingesting this vine can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, swollen mouth, and difficult breathing. 


Chrysanthemums are common flowers that can cause gastrointestinal upset in pets. Although not lethal, ingesting this plant can lead to vomiting and diarrhea, drooling, skin rash, and loss of coordination. 

Additional Plants

Other plants that are poisonous to pets include: 

  • Aloe vera 
  • Amaryllis 
  • Autumn crocus 
  • Asparagus fern 
  • Castor bean or castor oil plant 
  • Cyclamen 
  • Daffodil Dumb cane (Dieffenbachia) 
  • Hemlock 
  • Holly 
  • Hyacinth 
  • Jade 
  • Kalanchoe 
  • Mistletoe 
  • Pothos 
  • Thorn apple 
  • Yew

Please note that this list is not an extensive list of every plant that might be dangerous for your pet. Check out the ASPCA website for a more extensive list of Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants

If Your Pet Is Poisoned If you suspect your pet has ingested a poisonous plant, you should immediately call your vet or the Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) at (888) 426-4435. 

Make note of which plant you think your pet may have come into contact with and what symptoms your pet is showing. If possible, try to identify the plant by taking a photo or sample of it. Be sure to watch your pet closely for any changes in behavior or symptoms.

 Protecting your pet from poisonous plants can seem overwhelming. If in doubt, err on the side of caution. Doing your research, especially if you’re buying houseplants for your home or plants for your landscaping, can help protect your pet!

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