The Christmas holiday season is almost upon us and while we are up to our eyes decorating our houses with tinsel and Christmas trees, buying presents for friends and families and planning social visits and parties, it is important to spare a thought for our furry friends. Very often we unknowingly decorate our houses using plants that are toxic or give gifts of festive plants and flowers to friends who may have an inquisitive pet who will end up needing an expensive Christmas visit to their friendly local vet.
Despite its bad reputation for being toxic to plants, poinsettias are actually non-to mildly toxic. If ingested there should not be a severe, if any reaction, however, if rubbed on the skin a mild rash may develop. Poinsettias are not only festive looking but are safe to keep at home with pets.
Real Christmas trees are also generally safe for pets to be around although pine needles can cause eye damage such as corneal lacerations if a dog or cat accidently brushes against them. If the sap from the tree is ingested it may cause mild gastrointestinal discomfort for the animal but otherwise they should be fine.
The Christmas plant to watch out for is the ‘kissing’ plant Mistletoe as it is extremely poisonous to pets and should be kept well out of their way. If Mistletoe is ingested it can cause gastrointestinal upset or even signs of poisoning such as change in mental function, difficulty breathing or low heart rate. If a pet does ingest mistletoe, veterinary assistance should be sought immediately.
Holly is also considered very poisonous for pets. Clinical symptoms may be displayed as vomiting, diarrhea, decreased energy, and a general upset stomach. Owners should always seek immediate veterinary assistance if they suspect their pets of ingesting holly.
Amaryllis flowers are also very toxic to both cats and dogs and if ingested will cause sickness, an appearance of depression, a loss of appetite and a painful abdomen area. In severe cases it may cause tremors, and this is a sign of severe toxicity and the animal should be treated immediately.
Lilies are predominantly toxic to cats. The ingestion of any part of any type of lily can lead to the cat’s kidney failure. The clinical signs that the cat has been poisoned can include vomiting, depression, or loss of appetite. If you suspect your cat of ingesting lilies, you should contact your veterinarian immediately. There is no antidote for lily poisoning, and intense supportive care is needed for cats to recover if indeed they do.
If you have pets in the house, it is probably best not to have any of the aforementioned toxic plants in the house or garden but if you do, keep them well out of reach from inquisitive pets as it could end up being a very expensive Christmas for you and a miserable one for your pet.
For all your Tree Care needs, call Heritage Tree Care on 0737155444 or email email@example.com for a free, no-obligation quote, our qualified Arborists will be delighted to advise you on the best course of action for your trees. We cover Brisbane, Logan, Ipswich, Redlands and Gold Coast area in Queensland, Australia.