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Toxic Plants

Spring is the time of year to which we most look forward. Because the weather is warmer, it is a time of year when we start spending more time outside. With that in mind, we also see more cases of toxic plant ingestion. As the plants start to come out from their winter slumber our pets can often become more interested in them. Unfortunately, this can have dangerous, life threatening consequences. You may already know that some of these plants are dangerous but some may surprise you.

Lilies (Easter Lily, Tiger Lily and Day Lilies to name a few) can cause kidney failure in cats. Minor exposure, even just brushing up against the pollen or eating a small amount of the leaf can be dangerous.

Azaleas, Rhododendrons, and Laurels contain a toxin that can cause vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, cardiac arrhythmias, and seizures. Toxins are found in the stems, leaves, flowers, and nectar of these plants.

Foxglove, Lily of the Valley, Oleander, and certain milkweeds fall into a group of plants that contain cardiac glycosides. In most cases, all parts of the plant are toxic. Because of the toxic nature of these plants any exposure should be treated immediately.

If you think your pet has eaten a plant and you are unsure of its toxic nature, it is always best to have as much information as you can about the plant. Take a picture to show the veterinarian. Try to get the leaves and flowers in the picture if you can. This will allow the veterinarian to assess the correct course of action and ensure a better prognosis for your pet. 

If you have any questions, please contact us at Eagle Animal Hospital 610-458-8789. We serve Chester Springs, Downingtown, Exton, Glenmoore and the surrounding area.

Written by Harriet Band

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