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Armitage Animal Clinic

Providing excellence in health care…for your pets!

18025 Yonge St, Unit 6
Newmarket, ON L3Y 8C9

Plants That Are Toxic To Pets 

March 15 2023

Spring is coming, and many gardeners and plant lovers are already starting seeds or planning their projects. Pets love supervising their humans doing this type of task. However, while your furry pal may look adorable posing with your plants, you’ll need to take some precautions here. Many plants are toxic to Fido and Fluffy! In this article from Armitage Animal Clinic, your Newmarket, ON veterinary hospital, a local vet lists a few of the most dangerous ones. 

Sago Palm 

Although the Sago palm doesn’t do well in our climate, it can be grown indoors. While the entire plant is toxic, the seeds are really the most dangerous part. Unfortunately, many dogs like the taste and/or texture of the seed pods. It can cause liver damage and/or failure, and can even be fatal. Warning signs include vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, lethargy, dark urine, nosebleeds, staggering, and seizures.


Even ingesting a single leaf or drinking a bit of a lily’s water can be fatal to cats. While all lilies are toxic to Fluffy, those in the true lily and daylily families are the most dangerous. These include Tiger lilies, Easter lilies, Japanese Show lilies, Wood lilies, and Stargazer lilies. 


Foxgloves contain cardiac glycosides toxins, which, as the name suggests, can affect the heart. Warning signs include vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, dilated pupils, weakness, and irregular heartbeat. (Note: Foxglove isn’t the only plant that contains these poisons. Others include Dogbane, Giant Milkweed, Kalanchoe, Lily Of The Valley, Milkweed, Oleander, And Star Of Bethlehem.)


Rhododendrons contain grayanotoxin, a neurotoxin that affects muscle, heart, and nerve function. Red flags include vomiting, diarrhea, and drooling. Severe cases can lead to coma, cardiovascular collapse, and death. It’s worth noting that all the plants in the rhododendron family, including azaleas and philodendrons, should be considered unsafe.


These are just a handful of the many plants that are toxic to pets. You can find many more listed at the ASPCA site here. It’s also important to be aware of poisonous wild plants and flowers. Some local ones include Death Camas, Lupines, Western Water Hemlock, Larkspur, and Locoweed. If you know or suspect that your furry buddy has ingested something unsafe, immediately contact your vet or the  APCC at (888) 426-4435.

Here at Armitage Animal Clinic, your Newmarket, ON veterinary hospital, we’re dedicated to offering great care. Contact us anytime! 

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