When it comes to our pets, I don’t know of any responsible pet owner who doesn’t strive to keep their precious fur-babies happy, healthy and safe.  We all take our dogs and cats for regular vet checkups and ensure that they are always up to date on their vaccinations. Some of us spend extra money buying top of the line natural dog food or special treats. We take our dogs for long walks for exercise.  We put up gates and install invisible fences to keep our pooches in the yard, where you know they’ll be out of harm’s way.  But there is one very specific hazard that many people overlook when “pet-proofing” their home…..PLANTS. There are an overwhelming numbers of plants, found indoors and outdoors, that can be harmful or even lethal in some cases to your cat or dog if ingested. Below is a list of the most common plants that can cause great harm to your pet and the symptoms they might experience if they are eaten.  It is strongly recommended that pet owners do not have any of these plants inside or outside of their home. On walks where you will be leaving your property, always keep an eye on your dog to ensure that he is not eating any kind of plant. In the unfortunate case that your pet does ingest one of these plants and is experiencing symptoms, the Animal Poison Control Center can be reached 24 hours a day, 365 days a year at (888) 426-4435.

Aloe Vera
Symptoms: Vomiting, depression, diarrhea, anorexia, tremors, change in urine color

Symptoms: Vomiting, depression, diarrhea, abdominal pain, hyper salivation, anorexia, tremors

Autumn Crocus
Symptoms:  Oral irritation, bloody vomiting, diarrhea, shock, multi-organ damage, bone marrow suppression

Azalea/ Rhododendron
Symptoms:  Acute digestive upset, excessive drooling, loss of appetite, frequent bowel movements/diarrhea, colic, depression, weakness, loss of coordination, stupor, leg paralysis, weak heart rate and recumbency for 2 or more days; at this point, improvement may be seen or the animal may become comatose and die

Baby’s Breath
Symptoms: Vomiting, diarrhea

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


Symptoms: Oral irritation, intense burning and irritation of mouth, tongue and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting and diarrhea, difficulty swallowing, incoordination


Black Locust Tree

Symptoms: Depression, poor appetite, weakness or paralysis, abdominal pain and diarrhea (which may be bloody), abnormalities in the heart rate and/or rhythm


Buckeye Tree

Symptoms: Severe vomiting and diarrhea, depression or excitement, dilated pupils, coma, convulsions



Symptoms: Vomiting, diarrhea, depression, anorexia, hyper salivation, wobbly gait


Caladium Plant

Symptoms: Oral irritation, including intense burning and irritation of mouth, tongue and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty swallowing

Symptoms:  Mild gastrointestinal signs, mild dermatitis

Castor Bean
Symptoms:  Abdominal pain, drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst, weakness and loss of appetite. Severe cases of poisoning can result in dehydration, muscle twitching, tremors, seizures, coma, possible death

Christmas Berry

Symptoms: Hyper salivation, inappetence, severe gastrointestinal upset, including diarrhea, drowsiness, CNS depression, weakness, dilated pupils, slow heart rate


Christmas Rose

Symptoms: Drooling, abdominal pain and diarrhea, colic, depression

Symptoms:  Vomiting, diarrhea, hyper salivation, dermatitis


Symptoms: Mild vomiting

Symptoms:  Gastrointestinal irritation, including intense vomiting, possible death

Symptoms:  Vomiting, salvation, diarrhea; large ingestions cause convulsions, low blood pressure, tremors, cardiac arrhythmias


Symptoms: Oral irritation, vomiting, difficulty swallowing, burning sensation of the lips, tongue and mouth


Symptoms: Causes a cyanide build-up in the animal’s body


Symptoms:  Salivation, vomiting, drooling, lethargy, diarrhea



Symptoms: Vomiting and diarrhea, depression

Symptoms:  Vomiting, diarrhea, depression


Symptoms: Vomiting and diarrhea, dermatitis, other allergic reactions



Symptoms: Salivation, vomiting and diarrhea, drooling, lethargy

Ivy (California Ivy, Branching Ivy, Glacier Ivy, Needlepoint Ivy, Sweetheart Ivy, English Ivy)
Symptoms:  Vomiting, abdominal pain, hyper salivation, diarrhea

Symptoms: Gastrointestinal irritation, serious affects to cardiac rhythm and rate of the heart


Symptoms: Vomiting and diarrhea, depression, cardiovascular collapse, hyper-salivation, weakness, coma, low blood pressure, death

Symptoms:  Kidney failure

Symptoms: Depression of the central nervous system and incoordination, vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, increased heart rate, seizures, coma

Symptoms:  Vomiting, profound depression, weakness, anorexia, and diarrhea are common; may be followed by seizures, difficulty breathing, rapid, weak pulse, dilated pupils, kidney or liver failure, coma, respiratory paralysis, death


Symptoms:  Gastrointestinal disorders, including vomiting and diarrhea, cardiovascular collapse, dyspnea, bradycardia, erratic behavior, low blood pressure (rare)

Morning Glory
Symptoms:  Gastrointestinal upset, agitation, tremors, disorientation, ataxia, anorexia, hallucinations

Symptoms:  Colic, diarrhea (possibly bloody), sweating, incoordination, shallow/difficult breathing, muscle tremors, recumbency, possible death from cardiac failure

Peace Lily (AKA Mauna Loa Peace Lily)
Symptoms: Oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty in swallowing, intense burning and irritation of the mouth, lips and tongue

Symptoms:  Irritating to the mouth and stomach, sometimes causing mild vomiting

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


Symptoms: Kidney failure, tremors, salivation

Sago Palm
Symptoms:  Vomiting, melena, icterus, increased thirst, hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, bruising, coagulopathy, liver damage, liver failure, death

Symptoms: Oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty in swallowing and intense burning and irritation of the mouth, lips and tongue

Tomato Plant
Symptoms:  Hyper salivation, inappetence, severe gastrointestinal upset, diarrhea, drowsiness, CNS depression, confusion, behavioral change, weakness, dilated pupils, slow heart rate

Symptoms:  Intense gastrointestinal irritation, drooling, loss of appetite, depression of the central nervous system, convulsions, cardiac abnormalities


Symptoms: Vomiting and diarrhea, depression

Symptoms:  Central nervous system effects such as trembling, incoordination, and difficulty breathing; gastrointestinal irritation and cardiac failure, which can result in death


Written by: Randi Tomaszewski, Professional Pet Sitter for Sarah’s Pet Sitting