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Thinking about Purchasing a Plant for Your Home?

There are many common household plants that can be toxic to both dogs and cats.

With Summer approaching, it’s a good time to start buying plants for your home, but not so fast…according to the ASPCA Poison Control, there are literally thousands of plants that could be dangerous to your pet. Here are five  common plants and the symptoms they can cause your dog or cat. 

Caladium or Elephant Ears are poisonous to pets. Photo Credit: Madison Inouye from Pexels.
  1. Elephant Ears (Caladium/Colocasia): While these plants can be either indoors or outdoors with their beautiful large foliage, Elephant Ears  are often used as an accent or focal point, but more commonly as a background, ground cover, or edging. These plants are both toxic to dogs and cats, if ingested, they can cause, oral irritation, pain and swelling of the mouth, tongue and lips, as well as excessive drooling, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing.
    Corn Plant or Dracaena is toxic to dogs and cats. Photo Credit: Adobe Stock/Yuthana Choradet.
  2. Corn Plant (Dracaena Fragrans): Also called a Dragon Tree or Ribbon Plant, theses plants are effective houseplants that help air purification within your home. They help remove formaldehyde, benzene, and carbon dioxide. These plants have mild to moderate side effects in both dogs and cats which can include vomiting (occasionally with blood), depression, anorexia, hypersalivation, dilated pupils (cats).
    Hydrangeas are beautiful but can cause digestive discomfort in cats and dogs. Photo Credit: Adobe Stock/Aquaphoto.
  3. Hydrangea (Hortensia): Also known as Hills of Snow and Seven Bark, are mostly used outdoors as shrubs. Their large colorful flower heads, makes these a go to plant for outdoor use. These plants case cause your dog or cat vomiting, depression, and diarrhea.
    Pothos is a common household plant that is toxic to pets. Photo Credit: Adobe Stock/Husniyya.
  4. Pothos (Gold Pothos/Devil’s Ivy): Also called Ivy Arum. Pothos is a common leafy houseplant you may already own. While mostly and indoors houseplant, it is occasionally grown outside, especially during the summer. This plant has a pet safety risk for oral irritation, pain and swelling of the mouth, tongue and lips, as well as excessive drooling, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing.
    Azaleas are easy-to-care-for outdoor plants that are toxic to pets. Photo Credit: Jeffrey Hamilton on Unsplash.
  5. Azalea (Rhododendron/Rosebay): The flowers on Azaleas last for several weeks and are tolerant the shade. Because they are both colorful and easy-to-care-for they are common outdoor plants. However, these flowering shrubs can be fatal. Ingestion of azaleas can cause excessive drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, difficulty walking, appearing lethargic, tremors or seizures, loss of appetite, cardiac arrest, and coma.

While plants can be beneficial by improving air quality, curb appeal, and your mood, they could also have some hidden or unknown toxins harmful to your pet. So, do your research before choosing your plants and avoid ones that may be toxic to your pets, especially if they have a tendency to chew on things they shouldn’t. If you think your pet has ingested a potentially toxic substance contact your vet or an emergency veterinary clinic (such as our veterinary partner, MedVet) immediately as time is of the essence.

For a more comprehensive list of toxic plants  visit the ASPCA website

If you have any topics you want to learn about or have any questions regarding the market, let us know in the comments below.

Tim Dovel of Fathom Realty, is your Cincinnati, OH and Atlanta, GA pet loving Realtor. While not at a closing table, he is taking his Boston Terrier, Trixie, out on trips, walking the local dog parks, or visiting local stores and restaurants. There’s no bones about it, pets make a home feel happier! Trixie is his co-agent that helps him sniff out the best-of-the-best in pet friendly homes and pet friendly areas!

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