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Canine Health


Avoid plants and decorations which can be poisonous or harmful to your pets. As regards to safety, watch your puppy like a small child.





by Staff


Symptoms, treatment for poinsettia, mistletoe, holly and other holiday plants known to be poisonous to pets, plus the National Poison Control emergency number.


Christmas plants make wonderful gifts but can be toxic to petsIndeed, there are traditional Christmas season, 4th Of July, Thanksgiving and other holiday plants and decorations that can be deadly to your dog, cat, bird, or other house pet. Below are photos and information on plants that can poison your pet but first, here is the emergency number to call if you suspect your pet has has chewed on one of these plants. If your vet is closed, among the best phone numbers to call in an emergency is 1-800-222-1222 the National Poison Control Center which will automatically connect to their free service in your state. Depending on who answers, you should get quick, basic information for animal poisoning 24-7.


Here is how to to induce vomiting, "give your dog 3% hydrogen peroxide, which is available at your local pharmacy. It is the preferred vomit-inducing product for dogs. Give your dog one teaspoon hydrogen peroxide per 10 pounds (4.5 kg) of body weight."~ ref


These are the most dangerous holiday plants.  We advise against having then in your home if you have pets. If a guest brings one of these toxic-to-pets plants or if you have them in the landscaping, be sure your dogs can't get to them. Check those that are dangerous to cats because it is difficult to prevent feline access to anything...


Cyclamen (Primulaceae) – Contains Triterpinoidsaponins found in the tuberous shizomes.

Symptoms: GI problems, convulsions, and paralysis. Toxins cause local irritation and are therefore well absorbed from the GI tract. Toxicity of hybrid species has not been supported experimentally.

Treatment – Symptomatic but veterinary if convulsing.

Poinsettia can make your pets very sick if chewed or swallowed.


Poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima) – Milky sap contains unknown toxic principles.

Symptoms: Irritates mucous membranes and causes excessive salivation and vomiting, but not death. 

Treatment – Symptomatic at best. Gastric lavage, activated charcoal and saline cathartics should be considered.


Easter Lily (Lilium longiflorum) is extremely poisonous to cats . Eating small amounts of any part of this plant can cause dangerous symptoms which can to death from kidney failure in cats. Dogs are not as sensitive to the toxins in this plant but make sure they can't reach the holiday lilies.


Traditional Christmas decorations like live plants can be deadly to petsEnglish Holly (Ilex aquifolium) – Saponins: an alkaloid triterpene compound, and unknown compounds with digitalis-like cardiotonic activity have been found in leaves, fruits and seeds.

Symptoms: Abdominal pains, vomiting and diarrhea observed following ingestion of .2 berries. Death rare.

Treatment – Symptomatic or veterinary.

Keep all live Christmas plants and other decorations away from children and pets


Mistletoe (Pghoradendron flavescens) – Amines, toxic proteins and unknowns found in all parts.

Symptoms: Vomiting, profuse diarrhea, dilated pupils, rapid labored breathing, shock, and death from cardiovascular collapse within hours of ingesting toxic dosage.

Treatment – Get your dog to the veterinarian!


It not just holiday plants that can make your pets sick.  Indoor decor plants, outdoor landscaping plants, and even some fruit and vegetable plants can be very dangerous to both children and pets.  Click for this printable Dangerous and Hazardous Plants page. EST 1998 ©   1607r1712



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GREEN AIR FOR GROOMERS: House plants help clean the air of sprays, dips and powders.

SIMPLE SAFETY TIPS FOR YOUR DOG: Puppies, like children, need safe surroundings and monitoring.


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