Top Ten Poisonous Plants for Dogs

Many plants are poisonous to dogs, but only a few are truly dangerous.  According to the Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, these are the top ten most poisonous plants for dogs.

Grapes — Grape toxicity used to be thought of as an urban legend, but new research shows that dogs really are poisoned by grapes and raisins.  In addition to refraining from feeding your dog these, watch out for wild grape vines growing on your property that dogs may eat the grapes off of.  Grapevine wreaths should be kept out of reach of your dog, too.

Mushrooms — Mushrooms growing in the yard after a rain can kill your pet.  While some mushrooms are safe, it is better to keep them away from your dog unless you can confidently identify them as edible.  This is hard to do, and even experts fail sometimes, so just throw those mushrooms in the trash where the dog can’t get to them.

Marijuana — Regardless on your person views on marijuana, it can kill your dog.  Dogs who ingest marijuana can experience symptoms like slow heart rate, lack of coordination, disorientation, drooling and tremors that can persist for up to three days.

Lilies — these can cause liver failure in dogs.  If you see your dog eating a lily, it is time for an emergency trip to the veterinarian.  Some lilies that are especially dangerous are the peace lily, calla lily, amaryllis, lily of the valley, autumn crocus and the common houseplant, and the giant Dracaena or palm lily.

Black walnuts –The nuts themselves are harmless to your dog.  However, once the shells begin to decompose, they grow a mold with a toxin in it that can make your dog really sick.  If you have a black walnut tree, rake the walnuts up on a regular basis.

Sago Palm — These are often used in landscaping and in offices.  However, the seeds and plant contain cycasin, a poison so potent that a dog eating a single seed can die.  If you see your dog eating or chewing on these plants, run him to a veterinarian immediately.

Azalea — These plants are so poisonous that ingestion of just a few leaves can cause serious issues like digestive upset, drooling, loss of appetite, weakness and leg paralysis. In some cases, eating azalea can lead to coma or death.

Castor beans — These contain ricin, for which there is no antidote.

Daffodils — These bulbs herald spring and are planted extensively.  However, they contain poisonous alkaloids that can cause vomiting, excessive salivation, diarrhea, convulsions, tremors and heart problems.  The bulbs are the most dangerous part, so watch your dog while you are planting them.

Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane)– often recommended to purify the air in buildings, this plant is poisonous to dogs. It burns the esophagus and stomach and can make the esophagus swell, cutting off air to the dog.

Plants are great to have around.  Just be sure you plan your landscaping so that it is safe for your dog.