Plants and Pets

by | May 24, 2024

What is the dog chewing on now?

A black cat sniffing a plant with dark pink flowersWe occasionally take phone calls from concerned pet parents about indoor and outdoor plants that their furry family members have nibbled on. In some cases the plant may be a simple stomach irritant, as with poinsettia plants, but in other cases intoxication is a concern.

What should we do if we have plant poisoning concerns?

Our advice is to identify the plant and call Poison Control (website) immediately. There are some pet resources that help with identifying what symptoms and concerns are brought on by certain plants (, also veterinarypartner,com poisonous plants). Have the pet seen at an emergency facility especially if symptoms are severe.

Look but don’t touch

One case from years ago was a young dog that was mouthing the trimmings from a rhododendron bush. The poor little fellow had digestive upset and was successfully treated at an emergency clinic. It turns out that all parts of a rhododendron plant can be toxic if ingested, for both humans and animals. Even honey made from rhodie flowers contains a neurotoxin. Be careful with those pets helping with yardwork!