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As humans, we often bring plants into our homes to help provide fresh air or just because we like the beautiful looks. This is especially true around the holidays when decorations are plentiful!
However, if you have pets you need to be very careful about what plants you bring into your home as some can be extremely poisonous and dangerous to your pets. Let’s look into the common holiday plants to avoid and how to find that information.
Pet owners do quite a lot in their daily lives to establish boundaries and direct their pets to make good and healthy choices. Often, this involves some sort of management, like shutting doors to keep pets out.
However, this isn’t always foolproof, especially around the holiday season when guests may be visiting or the family is home more often.
For this reason, I highly recommend avoiding bringing toxic plants into your home altogether! Though keeping them in a pet-free zone may sound doable, and even may be, it is not worth the risk of a potentially fatal mistake.
Common holiday plants used in decorations that are poisonous to pets include:
Another thing to keep an eye on is your Christmas Tree, especially if you use a real tree. More than likely, the tree will loose some of its pine needles over the season. This is important because if digested, these small leaves can cause major issues!
Pine needles may be ingested by your pet out of curiosity or because they like the flavor of the pine, but this should be avoided at all costs! They may puncture an organ or wall in your pet’s GI system or they can cause a blockage if too many are ingested.
If you have a pet that likes to eat, jump, and climb on your Christmas Tree, read our guide to help keep them away from it here! However, if you have a pet that has a history of eating things they shouldn’t, it may be best to avoid a real Yule tree.
What’s toxic to us is not the same as what is toxic to your pets. Sometimes, even plants that are safe for cats can be dangerous for dogs, and vice versa.
In order to successfully determine if a plant is poisonous, you need a reliable source. Thankfully, the ASPCA has an extensive database where you can search for the plant and learn about its toxicity and even the symptoms of the reaction to the plant in pets.
Before you bring any plant into your home, make sure to check it against the ASPCA’s database so you can keep all your furry companions safe and healthy!
Keep giving your pets the best of natural life!
April Arguin A.S., C.P.N., M.P.H