Seasonal Reminder: Easter Lilies are extremely toxic to cats
Cats and plants have a rocky history... and like most cat owners, we know that many cats and plants cannot coexist.
There are a few plants that can be quite harmful to our feline friends, and lilies are one of the most dangerous.
"Lilies in the “true lily” and “daylily” families are very dangerous for cats. The entire lily plant is toxic: the stem, leaves, flowers, pollen, and even the water in a vase. Eating just a small amount of a leaf or flower petal, licking a few pollen grains off its fur while grooming, or drinking the water from the vase can cause your cat to develop fatal kidney failure in less than 3 days. The toxin, which only affects cats, has not been identified," the FDA advises on it's website.
"Early signs of lily toxicity in cats include decreased activity level, drooling, vomiting, and loss of appetite. These symptoms start 0 to 12 hours after ingestion. Signs of kidney damage start about 12 to 24 hours after ingestion and include increased urination and dehydration. Kidney failure occurs within 24 to 72 hours, leading to death if the cat isn’t treated. Early veterinary treatment greatly improves the cat’s prognosis. However, if treatment is delayed by 18 hours or more after ingestion, the cat will generally have irreversible kidney failure."
Easter lilies are popular this time of year as Spring approaches. Here is a list of dangerous lilies to keep out of your home.
- Asiatic lily (including hybrids)
- Easter lily
- Japanese Show lily
- Oriental lily
- Rubrum lily
- Stargazer lily
- Tiger lily
- Wood lily
If you suspect that your cat has eaten any part of a lily or its pollen or has drunk water from a vase containing lilies, immediately call your veterinarian or a pet poison control center. Depending on the type of lily, it may be a medical emergency and prompt veterinary treatment is critical. Try to bring the lily plant with you to the veterinary clinic (or take a picture of it on your cell phone). This will help your veterinarian determine if it’s one of the highly toxic ones.
Spring is a wonderful time of year and your kitty friends want to enjoy it with you. Be sure to keep these plants far away from them!
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