It’s easy to become over anxious about your dog’s wellbeing. Our dogs are family members and of course we want to make sure we provide a safe home for them.
Many of us are aware of the foods dogs can eat and those that are dangerous for them. Although we may find it strange to think, even something as seemingly innocuous as raisins can be very dangerous if your dog eats them.
However, food is one thing… many of us have plants in our homes that our dogs may be tempted to eat.
In this post, I’m going to talk about house plants… specifically house plants poisonous to dogs. These are also plants that we commonly keep in our homes that our dogs may well be tempted to nibble on.
In the course of this article, I’m going to list a number of house plants that are poisonous to dogs and discuss what to do if your dog eats one of them.
Table of Contents
- Houseplants Poisonous to Dogs
- Symptoms of Plant Poisoning
- What to do If Your Dog Eats a Poisonous House Plant
- Related Posts
39 Houseplants Poisonous to Dogs
Please Note: This is not an exhaustive list of house plants poisonous to dogs.
If your dog eats any house plant, you should visit a veterinary professional to be on the safe side.
The following house plants are poisonous to dogs. While consumption of most of them will not be life-threatening, all will likely require a visit to a veterinary professional to minimise the effects of poisoning and reduce your dog’s suffering.
The first in this list is alocasia, which is also commonly known as “elephant’s ear”. Alocasia is a tropical houseplant poisonous to dogs: it not only irritates the mouth (it causes a powerful burning sensation) but it also leads to drooling, makes swallowing difficult and causes vomiting. Other symptoms include skin inflammation, eye pain, abdominal pain and diarrhoea. All parts of this houseplant (roots, stem and leaves) are poisonous to dogs. In fact, even the oils in alocasia can poison your dog if exposed to the skin.
We often think of aloe’s healing properties, especially around skin and hair care. However, aloe can be poisonous to dogs. If eaten, aloe can cause vomiting, diarrhoea and in severe cases it can lead to seizures.
The popular amaryllis is a member of the lily family. Most types of lily are extremely poisonous to dogs and while the amaryllis is harmful it’s not as toxic as most other lilies. As a consequence, amaryllis consumption can lead to drooling, loss of appetite, vomiting, stomach pain and even a drop in blood pressure.
4. Arrowhead Plant
This sap of this ornamental house plant contains a chemical called calcium oxalate, which can cause harm if contacted or swallowed. All parts of the arrowhead plant are poisonous to dogs and can cause loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea, chills and even depression.
5. Asparagus Fern
The asparagus fern has berries that cause stomach cramps, vomiting and diarrhoea if consumed. Additionally, the leaves can also cause skin irritation if your dog brushes against them.
The begonia has wide appeal as it’s a very attractive indoor plant. Although not a deadly houseplant, it’s still toxic to dogs and can cause drooling, an intense burning sensation in the mouth and throat, difficulty swallowing and vomiting.
7. Bird of Paradise
An unforgettable houseplant due to its incredibly recognisable flower (that really does resemble a tropical bird), the bird of paradise is a plant that’s highly poisonous to dogs. Ingestion causes drowsiness, breathing problems, drowsiness and in worst cases it can lead to death.
Also rather provocatively called “Lady of the Night”, the brunfelsia house plant is very toxic to dogs. All parts of the plant are harmful and ingestion may result in drooling, vomiting, diarrhoea, muscle cramps, paralysis and coma.
9. Calla Lily
Although beautiful, the calla lily is beautiful to look at but not good to eat! Like the asparagus fern it contains calcium oxalate as well as other poisonous alkaloids harmful to dogs. All parts of this houseplant are poisonous if they’re chewed or swallowed and can cause your dog to suffer mouth pain, drooling, loss of appetite and diarrhoea.
10. Chinese Evergreen
Popular as an easy-to-grow house plant, the Chinese evergreen has a mild to moderate toxicity for dogs. If your dog is poisoned by this plant, it’s likely to suffer mouth irritation (including swelling and pain), drooling, swallowing difficulty and vomiting. More severe symptoms can include liver and kidney damage.
A beautiful and brightly coloured flowering plant, ingestion of many parts of the chrysanthemum can cause coordination problems and vomiting.
Coleus is another extremely popular indoor plant that comprises many varieties. It’s perhaps more commonly known as “bread and butter plant”, “Spanish thyme” or “country borage”. Unfortunately, the oils within the coleus house plant are poisonous to dogs if consumed or absorbed through the skin. Symptoms of coleus poisoning are loss of appetite, drooling, irritation of the mouth, breathing difficulty, vomiting, diarrhoea (with blood) and weakness.
13. Corn Plant
Otherwise known as “dragon tree”, “cornstalk plant” and “ribbon plant”, all parts of the corn plant are poisonous to dogs and the effects can be mild or moderate. Ingestion can lead to loss of appetite, depression, drooling and vomiting (with or without blood).
An absolutely lovely flowering houseplant, cyclone is a commonly found ornamental plant. Unlike some of the entries on this list, not all parts of this houseplant are poisonous to dogs. However, the tubers and rhizomes of the cyclamen cause drooling, vomiting and diarrhoea. If consumed in large quantities, cyclamen may lead to cardiac arrhythmia and convulsions.
A welcome bright yellow flower that trumpets the arrival of spring, the daffodil is nonetheless a plant poisonous to all dogs. The flower, stem, leaves and bulb are all toxic and can cause stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhoea. More worryingly, ingestion can cause abnormal heart function and result in convulsions.
16. Desert Rose
The desert rose (also called Adenium) is actually A variety of succulent originating in Africa. As a house plant, all parts of the desert rose are highly toxic to dogs If eaten and can cause depression, vomiting, diarrhoea and cardiac arrhythmia. Consumed in large enough quantities, the toxic substance “digoxin” it contains can even result in death.
Dieffenbachia (or “Dumb Cane” as it’s also known) is a very popular house plant since its very easy to care for. However, all parts of the plant are poisonous to dogs if eaten and can lead to a severe burning sensation in the mouth and throat, drooling, swallowing difficulty and vomiting.
18. English Ivy
Although more commonly found outside, english ivy can also be grown as a house plant. All parts of the english ivy plant are moderately poisonous to dogs, causing stomach pain, drooling, vomiting and diarrhoea if chewed or swallowed.
Another plant that’s commonly used for its fragrances and oils found in all sorts of products we use, the eucalyptus is perhaps less commonly considered a house plant. Nonetheless it is entirely possible to sustain eucalyptus indoors. However, if you do keep it indoors it’s worth remembering that all parts of this house plant are toxic to dogs. If your dog eats Eucalyptus it’s likely that it’ll suffer weakness, drooling, diarrhoea and vomiting.
20. Flame Lily
A stunning plant that has flame-like flowers, the flame lily is A house plant that’s very poisonous to dogs. All parts of the plant contain colchichine alkaloids which can be deadly if consumed. Symptoms of poisoning from this house plant are known to be drooling, vomiting (with blood), diarrhoea (with blood), toxic shock, kidney failure, liver failure, paralysis and death.
21. Flamingo Flower
Another beautiful tropical house plant, all parts of the flamingo flower are toxic to dogs. Ingestion causes mild poisoning with a severe burning sensation in the mouth and throat, drooling and swallowing difficulty.
The garden is known to produce some of the most pleasantly fragrant flowers. However, all parts of this house plant are poisonous to dogs… including the flowers! The toxins in gardenias cause vomiting and diarrhoea.
Another very common plant found in homes, the geranium is one of the less poisonous in this list. That said, all parts of the geranium will have a toxic effect on your dog if eaten. Vomiting on ingestion is common.
24. Golden Pothos
Also called “devil’s ivy” is popularly kept indoors as a plant for improving air quality and like the english ivy, it’s another poisonous climbing plant. Fortunately the golden pothos is mildly toxic though it will still make your dog poorly if it eats any parts of it. Symptoms of golden pothos poisoning include severe burning sensations in the mouth and throat, drooling, frothing at the mouth and swallowing difficulty.
A gorgeous flower normally associated with springtime, the hyacinth is nonetheless poisonous to dogs. All parts of the hyacinth are toxic, but consumption of the bulbs causes the worst symptoms… that said, even inhaling dust from the bulbs can cause breathing problems. Hyacinth poisoning typically causes drooling, a severe burning sensation in the mouth, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, shortness of breath, cardiac arrhythmia and seizures.
26. Jade plant
Also known as “lucky plant”, “friendship tree” and “money plant”, the jade plant is very popular among succulent aficionados. As with other succulents in this list like aloe and desert rose, all parts of the jade plant are poisonous to dogs. Jade plant poisoning symptoms are generally mild and include vomiting, abdominal pain, weakness and tiredness. Less common symptoms can be decreased heart-rate and convulsions.
27. Kaffir Lily
The bell shaped orange flowers of the kaffir lily are irresistible to many… but alas it’s toxic to dogs. Although a lily in name only (it belongs to a different family), consumption of any part of it may result in drooling, vomiting and diarrhoea. However, the leaf, stem and bulbs are the most toxic elements and in large doses can cause decreased blood pressure, cardiac arrhythmia and convulsions.
Another brightly coloured flowering house plant poisonous to dogs, the kalanchoe contains a toxin in all parts of the plant that causes drooling, vomiting, diarrhoea, loss of appetite and weakness. In worst cases, kalanchoe poisoning cause cardiac arrhythmia, seizures and even death.
29. Octopus Tree
A member of the same family of plants as the calla lily, Chinese evergreen and elephant’s ear, all parts of the octopus tree house plant are poisonous to dogs. With a mild severity, octopus poisoning symptoms include drooling, severe burning sensations in the mouth, swallowing difficulty, vomiting and even laboured breathing.
Like geranium and hyacinth, oleander is another outdoor flower often grown indoors. All parts of the oleander are highly toxic… this is one of the most poisonous house plants for dogs (and humans) given that it disrupts the digestive, cardiovascular and nervous systems. Symptoms of oleandar poisoning in dogs are drooling, vomiting, diarrhoea, shortness of breath, tremors, loss of coordination, weakness, abnormal heart function and even death through heart failure.
31. Peace Lily
A lovely evergreen house plant, the peace lily is much loved for its white “spathes“. The peace lily is one of the more mild house plants poisonous to dogs but all parts of it are toxic. Peace lily poisoning symptoms include severe burning of the mouth, swelling of the lips and tongue, drooling, swallowing difficulty, breathing difficulty, vomiting and diarrhoea.
The peyote is a small variety of cactus that can be found as an ornamental indoor plant. However, peyote contains hallucinogenic compounds and poisonous alkaloids that will make your dog sick. Peyote is a house plant that’s moderately poisonous to dogs causing intoxication, hallucinations, vomiting and diarrhoea.
Philodendron is a popular indoor climbing plant that’s very easy to look after. Also known as “heartleaf philodendron”, it’s a house plant that’s moderately toxic to dogs… indeed all parts of the plant contain calcium oxylates that cause severe mouth burning, drooling, difficulty swallowing, vomiting, diarrhoea, breathing difficulty and cardiac arrhythmia.
The poinsettia is famous for its green and bright red foliage and is commonly used as a Christmas floral decoration. The poinsettia’s leaves and stem contain a white sticky substance like latex, which can cause a dermatitis-like rash on contact with the skin. Ingestion of any part of the poinsettia will likely result in mild to moderate poisoning in dogs, resulting in drooling, vomiting and diarrhoea.
35. Sago Palm
The sago palm isn’t actually a palm but a “cycad”… though it’s not hard to see why it’s named as such due to its feathery, palm-like foliage. Often used in landscaping the sago palm is also commonly found in homes as a house plant. As such it’s poisonous to dogs… in fact extremely so. All parts of the sago palm are toxic and if consumed symptoms include drooling, vomiting, diarrhoea, weakness, nosebleeds and seizures. Sago palm poisoning can also result in liver damage, liver failure and even death.
36. Snake Plant
Perhaps unfairly known as “mother-in-law’s tongue”, the snake plant is known as an extremely hardy plant with leaves of an architectural quality. As a general rule, sago palm is a mildly poisonous house plant to dogs. Symptoms of poisoning include drooling, vomiting and diarrhoea, In rare cases, sago palm poisoning can rupture red blood cells requiring more urgent veterinary treatment.
37. Ti Plant
The ti plant is a tropical plant that’s perhaps most famous for its use in the creation of Hawaiian hula skirts! Its long leaves can be green, purple, yellow, red, browen, pink, white or even a variety of combinations of these colours. As far as house plants poisonous to dogs go, ingestion of all parts of the ti plant can cause drooling, foaming at the mouth, vomiting (with blood), abdominal pain, diarrhoea (with blood) and cardiac irregularity. In rare cases ti plant poisoniong can cause convulsions and death.
38. Weeping Fig
The weeping fig is another outdoor plant that’s become popular as a house plant. It has shiny and rubbery leaves, which drop. The leaves contain the toxic substances ficusin and ficin, which cause drooling, vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal pain if consumed. Moreover, the milky white sap from the leaves and stem can cause painful blisters when it comes into contact with the skin.
39. ZZ Plant
The zz plant is another plant that’s popular for its low maintenance care needs. It has dark green leaves and all parts of this particular house plant are mildly poisonous to dogs. ZZ plant poisoning manifests in a severe burning sensation in the mouth, tongue and throat, drooling, abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhoea.
What to do If Your Dog Eats a Poisonous House Plant
If you believe your dog has eaten a poisonous house plant you should contact a veterinary professional as soon as you can for advice: you may need to be prepared to take your dog to a veterinary centre immediately.
Your vet will likely want to know what house plant (and the parts of the plant) your dog has eaten along with the quantity it has consumed.
If you’re unsure what the plant is, take a sample of the plant (or take a photograph of it) and collect any vomit in a plastic bag or container.
Tell your veterinary centre details of the time of day your dog consumed the house plant as well as all the symptoms of poisoning your dog has exhibited.
Do not try to make your dog purge what it has eaten, as this may do more harm than good.
Many house plants are poisonous to dogs, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep them in your home… you just need to be careful.
Of course, some house plants are more poisonous than others and you may take a view not to house those that are potentially fatal if eaten.
If you do keep house plants, always clear away fallen leaves to remove the possibility of your dog taking an interest in tasting them and perhaps keep them in areas your dog won’t be able to get to.
If the worst thing happens and your dog ends up eating anything it shouldn’t (be they poisonous house plants, raisins or chocolate) contact a veterinary professional immediately.
Has your dog ever been poisoned by a house plant? Or perhaps you have a question about this post? Please share your experiences in the comment section at the bottom of the page.
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