Poisonous Plants for Cats


Cats love to explore and this means climbing.  It also makes keeping poisonous plants out of reach more challenging.  Prevention is the best plan.  For indoor and outdoor cats know which plants are toxic.

Below is list of plants and the side effects most often associated if your cat ingests it, its leaves, stems and/or petals. Lilies are especially dangerous.  While some cause minor symptoms such as drooling others can result in kidney failure. If you see your cat eating any part of a lily, take immediate action and get it to your veterinarian or emergency hospital.

  1. Tiger, Day, Asiatic, Easter and Japanese Show Lilies – all are highly toxic to cats.  Even small ingestions (such as 2-3 petals or leaves) can result in severe kidney failure.
  2. Lily of the Valley can cause vomiting, diarrhea, a drop in heart rate, severe cardiac arrhythmias, and possibly seizures.
  3. Peace, Peruvian, and Calla lilies release toxins that cause a burning sensation in your cat’s stomach and mouth resulting in drooling.
  4. Oleander is poisonous to both cats and humans. Both fresh and dried oleander can be fatal if ingested and should be kept out of your home and yard at all costs.
  5. Sago palm can cause vomiting, bloody stools, damage to the stomach lining, severe liver failure and, in some cases, death.
  6. Amaryllis is toxic to both cats and dogs and can cause excessive drooling, gastrointestinal issues, and tremors.
  7. Spring blooming Crocus can cause general gastrointestinal upset including vomiting and diarrhea while Autumn Crocus is highly toxic and can cause severe vomiting, gastrointestinal bleeding, liver and kidney damage, and respiratory failure.
  8. Yew, Japanese Yew are extremely poisonous to cats, dogs, horses, cattle and humans. All parts of the plant (including the succulent, red berries) are very poisonous, as they contain taxines.
  9. Castor bean can cause many problems for your cat, such as excessive drooling, loss of appetite and abdominal pain and can be fatal in some cases.
  10. Marijuana signs of poisoning include a dazed expression, glassy eyes, incoordination, slow response times, dribbling urine, vomiting and drooling are also common, despite marijuana’s anti-nausea effects. Other signs include changes in heart rate, vocalization, neurological stimulation, hyperactivity, or coma.
  11. Pothos, Devil’s Ivy Chewing or biting the plant causes irritation of the mouth and GI tract. VERY rarely, swelling of the upper airway occurs making it difficult to breathe.
  12. Tulips and newly planted tulip bulbs can cause intense stomach upset, depression and loss of appetite.
  13. Autumn crocus plants can cause gastrointestinal bleeding and kidney and liver damage.
  14. Rhododendrons can result in vomiting, diarrhea and excessive drooling.
  15. Daffodils, Narcissus cause severe tissue irritation and secondary drooling. Ingestion of the bulb, plant or flower can cause severe vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and even possible cardiac arrhythmias or respiratory depression.
  16. Chrysanthemum flower can cause excessive drooling, rashes, and diarrhea.
  17. English Ivy can cause diarrhea, vomiting and excessive drooling.
  18. Dieffenbachia can cause intense oral irritation, drooling, nausea, vomiting and difficulty swallowing if ingested.
  19. Azalea can cause serious gastrointestinal issues, a slower heart rate and death if ingested.
  20. Kalanchoe can cause vomiting, diarrhea and heart arrhythmias if ingested.

If a plant is listed as poisonous assume flower petals, leaves, stems are all harmful because toxicity levels vary from plant to plant and a small amount can be devastating.  Don’t take a chance.

If you see your cat eating a plant take your cat and a sample of the plant (if your cat vomited – bring a sample) to your veterinarian or emergency hospital immediately.  Identifying the plant is especially necessary to know which organs the toxins may target. This list is NOT complete.  Visit ASPCA for a wealth of information of toxic and non-toxic plants.

Give us a call 909-594-1737.