By Liz McGehee

Believe it or not, your trendy house plants may pose as much of a threat to your pet as chocolate, rodenticides, household products and food containing the alcohol-based sweetener, xylitol. According to the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC), plants accounted for 5.2% of the cases of ingested toxins in 2016.

The ASPCA says call the APCC at (888) 426-4435 or contact your local veterinarian as soon as you suspect your pet may have ingested a potentially toxic substance.  ACC comes with a $65 consultation fee, but your pet’s life is worth the price.

Aloe Vera: A staggering number of people have no idea that this popular household plant is toxic to both cats and dogs.

Corn Plant: Also known as dracaena fragrans, corn plants are gorgeous and verdant but still extremely toxic when ingested by pets.

Lilies: A mere two petals from this flower can cause kidney failure and subsequent death in cats.  The palm lily, lily of the valley, amaryllis, peace lily and calla lily species are all toxic to dogs.

Poinsettia and Mistletoe: As festive as they are, poinsettias and mistletoe pose a serious threat to both dogs and cats. Make sure you place these out of reach.

Sago Palm: While the entire plant is toxic, it only takes one seed from this houseplant to trigger liver failure or death.

Dumb Cane: Dieffenbachia, or dumb cane, is a well-known air purifier, and…every part of this plant is poisonous to pets.

Eucalyptus: The smell of this plant alone is known to provoke depression in canines. Eucalyptus oil is toxic to both cats and dogs, unfortunately.

Symptoms and toxicity levels vary by plant.  General warning signs your pet has ingested a toxic substance may include:

• Hiding
• Rapid breathing
• Diarrhea
• Vomiting
• Depression
• Weakness
• Lethargy
• Bloody stool
• Seizures

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