Cats love to explore every nook and corner of your house, and you should usually let them be. However, certain things around your house can be harmful for your cat. A lot of cat owners don't know that these common plants are actually poisonous for cats.
A cat is an explorer. It's agile, attentive, and just as curious as a mammal can be. If you have one as a pet, you've probably experienced how much it enjoys chewing and gnawing at random items around the house. Unfortunately, some of the victims of its sharp teeth may turn out to be poisonous to your cat. And within this list of toxic chewables, you’ll also find several common plants.
From leaves to bulbs to pollen, different parts of different plant species can poison your cat and leave behind side effects that may sometimes be fatal. If you want to keep a cat, you may check to ensure that you don't have any of these plants around:
The Amaryllis plant has leafless stalks that typically grow 1-2 feet and have flowers shaped like trumpets. The amaryllis is available with red, white, and light pink flowers. Various parts of this plant contain varying quantities of phenanthridine alkaloids, which can be highly toxic to your cat if it ever decides to chew on the plant.
Stunningly pretty though lilies may be, they're pretty dangerous to different pets, including cats. Tiger lilies, Asiatic lilies, Daylilies, Easter lilies, and Japanese show lilies all contain substances that can prove to be highly fatal for your cat. Moreover, your cat doesn't even have to chew the plant to get a dose of poison directly; if it ever brushes past the plant and gets pollen stuck to its fur and then licks the skin to get rid of it, the damage is done!
Another flowering plant that's pretty popular for indoor and outdoor arrangements, which is why they're also highly exposed to cats. Different species contain different amounts of allergenic lactones, which can cause poisoning in your cats if digested. The bulb has the highest quantity of this toxin, but other parts, such as the leaves and stalks, may also be harmful.
Hyacinths are often used to liven up gardens and windowsill pots, making these flowers an easy target for your cat's jaw. Hyacinth contains many potential toxins in its bulb, which is why they're a complete no-go for cats. Besides the bulb, the ingestion of any other part may also cause a substantial amount of poisoning.
5. Window's Trill
These timid-looking plants are armed with some of the most advanced natural defenses in different parts. Chewing on the window's trill, also known as Kalanchoe, can cause a host of heart problems for your cat and may eventually prove to be fatal.
6. Crocus Plant
Any type, size, and part of the crocus plant are equally and highly dangerous for a cat. Whether you look at the spring crocus or the one that blooms in autumn, be warned; crocuses are no friends of cats. From the top petals to the roots down below, all crocus parts are almost equally poisonous, which is why cats can't even afford to go near them.
7. Castor Beans
Castor beans are a perennial, evergreen shrub that can grow as much as 40 feet tall and transform into a mass of woody stems with round bean clusters. Since they're bigger than the average house plant, castor beans look like they'd make an ideal outdoor home for cats. However, the beans and seeds contain ricin, a toxic protein that's bad for cats and humans, and insects!
8. English Ivy
The English Ivy comes in many forms, such as ground cover, indoor creeper, or an outdoor invasive plant. Since they can multiply across any surface, it can be challenging to keep them entirely out of your cat's path. If your cat ever eats even a small amount of mild ivy, it can cause severe poisoning.
Commonly known as dumb cane, this is a pretty popular house plant and grows reasonably well in both indoor and outdoor settings. This means your cat either has to live outdoors or indoors, depending on where you place the plant. Dieffenbachia is also toxic for cats when it is mishandled, or when cats chew on its leaves. Raphides and calcium oxalate present in Dieffenbachia can cause a number of disorders, diseases, and severe injuries to cats.
Yew is a common name given to a specific kind of species of tree. They're primarily used in festive settings and are for ornamental purposes, so you have to be extra careful if you ever decide to get a yew plant for a house with a cat. Yew contains taxines, a particular toxin that can be highly dangerous for both humans and livestock. Yew needles, leaves, and stalks, as well as other parts of the plant, can prove to be pretty fatal for your cat and even for you!
Oleander, also referred to as Nelium, contains toxins that can drive your cat straight to the vet's clinic. The plant is so toxic that even touching its leaves can cause skin irritation. If your cat chews even as little as four grams of these leaves, it's enough to prove fatal.
12. Sago Palm
The sago palm is a miniature, compressed form of a full-grown palm and is popular for outdoor garden decor. This perennial shrub contains several toxins in its different parts, including the feathery foliage and the thick trunk, which can fatally maim your cat.
You may find these dried Cannabis leaves safe for your consumption, but you should definitely not assume they're safe for your cat. The cannabis sativa plant, from which marijuana is usually extracted, contains toxins that may serve as a recreational drug for humans, but they're way too powerful for cats.
As much as you may admire the crazy cat lady life, it’s a tad difficult to actually live that way if you’re also a plant lover. Although not all plants are poisonous, there’s a vast range of plants that are, and keeping your cat as far from them as possible is the only way to avoid a tragedy!