The holiday season is upon us and with it comes plenty of festive decorations! From Christmas trees and mistletoe to everything in between– our homes, towns, and businesses are filled with light and love! However, if you have pets in or around your home, you should be aware that certain plants and trees can be extremely toxic to both cats and dogs. If you’re planning to go full Martha Stewart around your house, you’ll definitely want to take note of the following toxic plants. Even if your pet doesn’t normally bother with plants, you won’t want to risk that their curiosity won’t get them into trouble.
Who knew holly could be anything but jolly? Holly is easily recognizable with its bright red berries and signature pointy leaves. Unfortunately, if ingested, holly can cause the same negative reaction in pets that we find with poinsettias. With potentially toxic substances in the leaves, including saponins, methylxanthines, and cyanogen, your pet can become quite ill after ingesting them. According to the Pet Poison Helpline, ff ingested, most pets lip smack, drool, and head shake excessively due to the mechanical injury from the spiny leaves. Your best bet is
to keep holly out of sight and out of reach of your pets so that they won’t be tempted to dig in!
While you may want your holiday crush to meet you under the mistletoe, the same can’t be said for your furry friends. Mistletoe can lead to heart pounding moments for you and your beau, but it can also lead to literal heart-stopping reactions in your pet. According to the Pet Poison Helpline, when ingested in large amounts, abnormal heart rate, collapse, hypotension (low blood pressure), ataxia (walking drunk), seizures, and even death have also been reported. Consider getting fake mistletoe to prevent any risk of harming your pet.
Nothing says Christmas more than a good ol’ decorated pine tree in your home! However, having a live tree in your home can cause many risks if you have pets– especially if this is your pets first holiday season! For starters, eating the pine needles can not only irritate your pet’s mouth and stomach, but it can cause drooling and vomiting as well. Additionally, you need to be especially careful with the water that your tree is sitting in. Your pet may think it looks thirst-quenching, but it may be filled with bacteria and harmful fertilizers. Also, if you decorate your tree, be mindful that your curious cats and doggy detectives may think of the decor as special treats.
Known for their signature lipstick red leaves, poinsettias are a common plant to put out around the holidays. However, if you plan to decorate with poinsettias, be sure to keep them out of reach from your furry friends! According to the Pet Poison Helpline, the milky white sap found inside poinsettias can be toxic to both cats and dogs. While they don’t pose a huge health risk, ingesting a few leaves can cause vomiting and/or diarrhea. Generally, pets won’t require medical treatment. However, if you notice prolonged signs of distress you should definitely visit your local veterinarian.
While we all love holiday decorations, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Keep plants well out of reach from your pets, or opt for fake plants and trees instead! The Puff & Fluff team wishes you and your fur family a very safe and happy howliday season!