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Author Topic: Which plants are toxic to pets?  (Read 3971 times)

TBM

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Which plants are toxic to pets?
« on: July 22, 2013, 06:11:59 pm »

Like many of you, I have a pet. My (girlfriend's) cat Misty lives with us, she is quite the awesome cat, however she absolutely loves chowing down on our houseplant that's within her reach (just a Dracaena), which so far hasn't shown to be toxic.

However, most of us have more interesting plants than a mere Dracaena, which begs one to ask the question: Are my entheogenic plants toxic to pets? Right now all of mine are out of reach, but I'm sure there are many of you on this forum who have a cat or dog (bird?) who's tried to eat one of your plants.

Anyone here a veterinarian who could add some insight onto this topic? Obviously there are plants which have clearly been eaten by animals in the wild, like a jaguar seeking out caapi, but you definitely wouldn't want your pets eating something like Amaryllis or Nightshade.

Any input is much appreciated!

Carnival

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Re: Which plants are toxic to pets?
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2013, 07:39:12 pm »

Anything (ANYTHING) in the Solanaceae family should be avoided. This is also the case if you have small children running around.

A lot of people would hesitate to even call them 'entheogens,' because they are extremely toxic. Datura of all species, Mandrakes (also called May Apples), Nightshades (members of the belladona group) and Brugsmansia (sp?) all contain a triumvirate of highly dangerous molecules called tropane alkaloids. That include atropine, scopolomine and hyoscyamine. These three are the most powerful known  anticholinergics in existence.

I won't get into the pharmacological effects, because I know we discourage that kind of talk here, but believe me, it is NOT a fun way to go.

Not all members of the Solanaceae family are toxic in all parts, but if you are going to be buying one, make sure you do your homework. The 'interesting' ones are all pretty poisonous, however.

Fun fact: the word 'tropane' is derived from the name 'Atropos' who was one of the three fates in Greek mythology: she was the one who cut the thread of life, causing her victim to die and enter the underworld. This should tell you something about the bad juju that lives in these plants.

If anyone wants any, see my signature :)

EDIT: I would stay away from salvia divinorum, also. I'm not sure if it would have the same bizarre effects on a cat as it does a human (I don't know about the opioid receptor structure of cats), but I can't see why it wouldn't, and having a salvia-d cat running around sounds dangerous for both the cat, you, and your lady friend.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2013, 07:42:16 pm by Carnival »
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Anyone with an interest in toxic plants should message me!

TBM

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Re: Which plants are toxic to pets?
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2013, 08:06:28 pm »

Thanks for your input! If I ever do get anything from those families I'll be sure to keep it well out of reach from Misty (or any animals). I see your point with continuing to keep my salvia plant away from her too, even if it's not toxic to cats that could end up turning into a fiasco if the cat ate any :o

I never knew the connection between the word 'tropane' and Atropos, makes one really understand the Greeks in a different light.

Anyone have any other input for other plant species?

Mandrake

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Re: Which plants are toxic to pets?
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2013, 08:07:48 pm »

I won't get into the pharmacological effects, because I know we discourage that kind of talk here, but believe me, it is NOT a fun way to go.

A clarification - the community rules ban discussing extraction, preparation and consumption of scheduled compounds, but I see no problem in describing the pharmacological effects of a substance, particularly when it's intended for safety and not to encourage its use. This is particularly true in the case of potentially fatal substances like the tropane alkaloids.

Agreed with Carnival's warning, careful with solanaceae exposed for accidental ingestion. Datura, brugmansia, mandrake, henbane, nightshade. Along with other common plants that are known to be toxic to pets (lilies, tulip and daffodil bulbs, azaleas...) they should be kept in safe places if you have pets.

About Salvia Divinorum, I have read no reports of pets getting hurt after ingesting them, and since it's a plant quite widely grown, I suppose it's not a hazard for them. But as long as we don't see some research, better be cautious.

One good suggestion is providing your cat with plants she will enjoy. Pets like their greens now and then, and a tray of barley grass might keep her content when she needs to chew on leaves and help her stay away from your plants. Not to mention catnip :)
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TBM

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Re: Which plants are toxic to pets?
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2013, 08:15:22 pm »

Well I do have catnip which has only just begun to germinate... it's gotta get big enough to survive feline abuse yet

Sunshine

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Re: Which plants are toxic to pets?
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2013, 03:39:47 am »

A very pretty flower called foxglove is very dangerous to pets.
Back when I was working in a greenhouse the owner told me about it. The scientific name is digitalis. They make heart medication from it and ingesting it can be deadly. It is pretty common, so I recommend you keep an eye out for it. Here is a quote from wiki-

Quote
Depending on the species, the digitalis plant may contain several deadly physiological and chemically related cardiac and steroidal glycosides. Thus, the digitalis plants have earned several, more sinister, names: dead man’s bells and witch's gloves.
The entire plant is toxic (including the roots and seeds). Mortality is rare, but case reports do exist. Most plant exposures occur in children younger than six years and are usually unintentional and without associated significant toxicity. More serious toxicity occurs with intentional ingestions by adolescents and adults.[11] Early symptoms of ingestion include nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, wild hallucinations, delirium, and severe headache. Depending on the severity of the toxicosis, the victim may later suffer irregular and slow pulse, tremors, various cerebral disturbances, especially of a visual nature (unusual colour visions (see xanthopsia) with objects appearing yellowish to green, and blue halos around lights), convulsions, and deadly disturbances of the heart.
1

Marijuana, another common herb/plant, is also toxic to pets;

Quote
While ingesting marijuana is not usually fatal for dogs (only 2 percent during the six-year Colorado study), Waldrop said it can have dramatic effects, including depression, tremors, twitching, wobbliness, vomiting, coma and more.
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Quote
In dogs and cats poisoned by marijuana, clinical signs can be seen within 3 hours, and include severe depression, walking as if drunk, lethargy, coma, low heart rate, low blood pressure, respiratory depression, dilated pupils, hyperactivity, vocalization and seizures. Vomiting is often seen with dogs despite the “anti-emetic” (anti-vomiting) qualities of THC.
3

Here is a list I found of common plants which are poisonous to pets-
Quote
Lilies
Members of the Lilium spp. are considered to be highly toxic to cats. While the poisonous component has not yet been identified, it is clear that with even ingestions of very small amounts of the plant, severe kidney damage could result.

Marijuana
Ingestion of Cannabis sativa by companion animals can result in depression of the central nervous system and incoordination, as well as vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, increased heart rate, and even seizures and coma.

Sago Palm
All parts of Cycas Revoluta are poisonous, but the seeds or "nuts" contain the largest amount of toxin. The ingestion of just one or two seeds can result in very serious effects, which include vomiting, diarrhea, depression, seizures and liver failure.

Tulip/Narcissus bulbs
The bulb portions of Tulipa/Narcissus spp. contain toxins that can cause intense gastrointestinal irritation, drooling, loss of appetite, depression of the central nervous system, convulsions and cardiac abnormalities.

Azalea/Rhododendron
Members of the Rhododenron spp. contain substances known as grayantoxins, which can produce vomiting, drooling, diarrhea, weakness and depression of the central nervous system in animals. Severe azalea poisoning could ultimately lead to coma and death from cardiovascular collapse.

Oleander
All parts of Nerium oleander are considered to be toxic, as they contain cardiac glycosides that have the potential to cause serious effects—including gastrointestinal tract irritation, abnormal heart function, hypothermia and even death.

Castor Bean
The poisonous principle in Ricinus communis is ricin, a highly toxic protein that can produce severe 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 and death.

Cyclamen

Cylamen species contain cyclamine, but the highest concentration of this toxic component is typically located in the root portion of the plant. If consumed, Cylamen can produce significant gastrointestinal irritation, including intense vomiting. Fatalities have also been reported in some cases.

Kalanchoe
This plant contains components that can produce gastrointestinal irritation, as well as those that are toxic to the heart, and can seriously affect cardiac rhythm and rate.

Yew
Taxus spp. contains a toxic component known as taxine, which causes central nervous system effects such as trembling, incoordination, and difficulty breathing. It can also cause significant gastrointestinal irritation and cardiac failure, which can result in death.

Amaryllis
Common garden plants popular around Easter, Amaryllis species contain toxins that can cause vomiting, depression, diarrhea, abdominal pain, hypersalivation, anorexia and tremors.

Autumn Crocus

Ingestion of Colchicum autumnale by pets can result in oral irritation, bloody vomiting, diarrhea, shock, multi-organ damage and bone marrow suppression.

Chrysanthemum
These popular blooms are part of the Compositae family, which contain pyrethrins that may produce gastrointestinal upset, including drooling, vomiting and diarrhea, if eaten. In certain cases depression and loss of coordination may also develop if enough of any part of the plant is consumed.

English Ivy
Also called branching ivy, glacier ivy, needlepoint ivy, sweetheart ivy and California ivy,Hedera helix contains triterpenoid saponins that, should pets ingest, can result in vomiting, abdominal pain, hypersalivation and diarrhea.

Peace Lily (AKA Mauna Loa Peace Lily)
Spathiphyllum contains calcium oxalate crystals that can cause oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty in swallowing and intense burning and irritation of the mouth, lips and tongue in pets who ingest.

Pothos
Pothos (both Scindapsus and Epipremnum) belongs to the Araceae family. If chewed or ingested, this popular household plant can cause significant mechanical irritation and swelling of the oral tissues and other parts of the gastrointestinal tract.

Schefflera
Schefflera and Brassaia actinophylla contain calcium oxalate crystals that can cause oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty in swallowing and intense burning and irritation of the mouth, lips and tongue in pets who ingest.
4

Sources-
1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digitalis
2. http://www.komonews.com/news/local/Vet-More-marijuana-means-more-poisoned-dogs-208522541.html
3. http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/poison/marijuana/
4. http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/17-poisonous-plants

If you found this information useful or interesting feel free to give me a +1. It took me a while to compile all this and it would be much appreciated. Thanks! :)
« Last Edit: July 26, 2013, 03:49:49 am by 2centprofit »
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Greentoe

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Re: Which plants are toxic to pets?
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2013, 05:01:29 am »

Here's a good link for plants poisonous to pets

http://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/ccah/health_information/plants_pets.cfm

It has a couple of the plants already mentioned and a few more.

I have friend who's cats ate his marijuana plants and were fine, but the plants were still pretty small.
I've also seen a friends dog walk up and eat some hash off his coffee table. The dog looked like it had a hard time keeping its balance for a few hours, but other than that seemed fine. Apparently the dog has tried to eat his stash several times after that.
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TBM

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Re: Which plants are toxic to pets?
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2013, 06:54:05 am »

Thanks both of you for contributing ;D It's good to have a list like this for anyone who has a pet(s)