Last updated: Mar. 19 2018 2 min read
For those of you that keep your dog inside of the house at all times and away from outdoor dangers from poisonous plants, you may feel relatively safe but there are plenty of precautions to take in what indoor plants you choose to have around the house.
Let me guess, you probably have plants decorated inside such as the caladium, alocasia, elephant ears, a few philodendrons, and even a sprinkle of skunk cabbage for added sparkle. There is nothing to fear in this lovely scenario, is there?
Each indoor plant that we just mentioned above contain a small amount of sharp crystals known as calcium oxalate. Once your dog bites into these plants, the crystals become embedded in its mouth which not only results in pain, but can be fatal due to the immense swelling of the back of the tongue, thus preventing the dog from breathing, and ending in death by suffocation.
Mistletoe is a beautiful little plant, widely known as a yuletide decoration, that provides a traditional reminder of happiness during the holidays. But when the holidays are over, these mistletoe plants are carelessly thrown into the trash can. If your dog doesn’t get to it then there is a good possibility that a free-roaming dog outside may snatch up a few bites when the trash is put out. Either way, these dogs can become very sick when ingesting the mistletoe.
During wedding ceremonies, thousands of churches every year are decorated with beautiful yellow Jessamine to accent the ceremony. And the brides all carry bouquets of this yellow Jessamine. At the end of the ceremonies, these lovely decorations are tossed into the trash and death is literally waiting for any stray dog with nothing better to do than eat the blossoms of these plants.
Now that you can see that there are many common houseplants that represent death to your dog and other house pets, it obviously would behoove of you to understand exactly what you are putting into your home for plant decorations. Place your dog’s life ahead of your wish list when designing your indoor plant set up.
Further, if you think that your dog has been poisoned by plant toxin, bring both your dog and the suspected plant culprit with you to the veterinarian. If the vet knows exactly which plant caused the poisoning, he will have a better chance at providing the correct antidote.
Keep in mind, however, that your veterinarian cannot be expected to know as much as a botanist would, but proper diagnosis and the correct treatment of specific plant poisoning is at the vet’s fingertips through the national Poison Control Center if additional help is needed.