Keep Your House Plants Away From Your Dog: Many Indoor Plants, Fruits and Flowers are Poisonous to Canines

If you are lucky, you find the dog in distress, rush him to the vet, and he is treated and survives with no ill effects.

In the worst-case scenario, your dog will die, poisoned by your house plants.

To avoid tragedy, there is only one solution: get rid of toxic plants. You may think they are out of reach, but an enterprising dog can be very clever and persistent about reaching things he wants, even if they are on a high shelf or window sill.

Dangerous Indoor Plants

If you have marijuana in your home, you aren’t just breaking the law. you are endangering your pets, too. It causes stomach problems, increased heart rate, seizures and coma if eaten.

Other indoor plants, plus flowers often found in floral arrangements, that are incompatible with dog ownership include some cactuses, amaryllis, kalanchoe, begonias, most lilies, shamrocks, tulips, daffodils, chrysanthemums and ivy.

Don’t forget, some of these plants and flowers could be just as tempting to a curious baby or toddler, and in some cases, just as dangerous! “Better safe than sorry” is good advice. Removing any plants that could be a danger to pets or small children could avoid a tragedy.

Kitchen Dangers

Some people grow indoor tomatoes, or have a pot of chives on a window sill in the kitchen. Green tomatoes, tomato leaves and stems, and all parts of raw chives and onions are lethal for dogs.

Virtually all fruit pits and seeds are toxic, too, so don’t leave fruit sitting where dogs can reach them. When preparing a meal, you are likely to discard bits of vegetables, fruits, herbs, stems, pits, seeds, leaves and peelings. Make sure your indoor garbage or organic “green bin” is absolutely dogproof and preferably in a place that is inaccessible to your dog.

Other poisonous edibles include grapes (a handful eaten at one time can kill a dog), garlic, raisins, rhubarb, avocados and most nuts. And don’t forget chocolate! It’s not likely that you will be growing cocoa beans in your house, but chocolate is used in combination with many other foods, and it’s very dangerous for dogs — even lethal in some cases. Coffee is bad too, because it contains caffeine.

In an Emergency

If you dog has ingested poison of any kind, call your veterinarian immediately, then rush the dog to the vet along with a sample of what the dog ate. In an emergency, you can also call the Pet Poison Helpline toll-free at 1-800-213-6680. There is a $35 charge for this service.

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