15 plants that are highly toxic to cats

Kitties generally like to nibble on leaves. Little wonder you see a lot of pet owners grow "Cat Grass" around their homes. You might have noticed your cat around anything green and crunchy. Sometimes, they even eat green leaves out of boredom or play- this is completely normal. But unfortunately, some of these plants are highly toxic to cats. When ingested, they can give rise to symptoms ranging from mildly serious to the very serious.


So if you love your cat, you should be careful of some plants that are highly toxic to cats, including:

1. Azalea

The flowers of Azaleas give your home’s exterior a very pleasant feel that is worth complimenting. But ingesting just a few of the leaves of this plant can lead to oral irritation with subsequent diarrhea and vomiting in your cat. In some cases, it can cause heart arrhythmias, lowered blood pressure, coma, and even death.

2. Oleander

This plan is common and popular in warmer climates, and they usually add a splash of color besides being used for privacy. However, the branches and leaves are known to be highly toxic to humans and animals, including cats.

If your cat ingests this plant, it can lead to severe digestion issues, negative effects on the heart, and sometimes lead to death. Hence, try to avoid or keep this plant far away from where your cats can reach.


3. Aloe

The medicinal properties of this succulent plant make it one of the most common planted around homes. It is effective for treating several conditions, including burns.

But this plant contains a substance called aloin, which is highly toxic to cats. This bitter yellow substance is found in most aloe species and can cause vomiting and yellow urine. So, if you’re thinking of growing this plant around your home, it is high time you had a rethink and beware of its dangers to felines.

4. Daffodil

This is another beautiful bloomer that is highly toxic to felines. The bulb part contains the toxins and your cat can easily be drawn to it. So it is better to always keep this plant out of reach of your kitty when storing, especially if you’ve got a curious one.

However, ingestion of any part of the daffodil plant can result in diarrhea, vomiting, heart arrhythmias, abdominal pain and tenderness, convulsion, low blood pressure, and sometimes death.

5. Datura

Datura is a part of the potato family also known as the deadly nightshade family. There are different species of this plant, including moonflower, weed, jimson weed, sacred datura, southwestern thorn apple, among others.  The sacred datura is also known as the devil’s trumpet and all of its tissues contain alkaloids, which are poisonous chemical compounds.

When your cat ingests this plant, it can result in symptoms like distorted or blurred vision, intense thirst, high temperature, loss of coordination, convulsions, rapid heartbeat, coma, and even death.

6. Autumn Crocus

This pretty little flower can add beauty to your home, but if you have a cat, it is better to keep them away. This plant can cause a burning sensation in the mouth, as well as diarrhea, vomiting, seizures, nervous excitement, heart arrhythmias, or even liver or kidney damage. The entire plant is usually viewed as potentially toxic to cats, but the toxicity is highest in the bulb region.

7. Corn plant

The corn plant has other names like dragon tree, dracaena, ribbon plant, and cornstalk plant. It contains saponins, which are chemicals known to be toxigenic to cats. If your cat chews or eats this plant, it can lead to vomiting that may contain blood, depression, loss of appetite, and increased salivation. Sometimes, it can even make your cat have dilated pupils.

8. Sago Palm

This plant is also known as a cardboard palm or a coontie palm. It has tough, feathery foliage, which makes it hard to believe cats would want to chew them. But the truth is that cats can chew on them, especially when they are bored, and this is highly dangerous.

When ingested, this toxic plant can cause diarrhea, bloody vomiting, bleeding disorders, and possibly death.

9. Yew

Yew is one of the deadliest poisonous plants that are toxic to cats. A lot of people think they only need to be careful of the berries, but it’s the foliage that more toxic.

If your cat ingests the yew plant, it can be fatal and lead to death and the bad part is that the effects come without any warning sign. That’s more reason you need to keep your cat away from this attractive nuisance.


10. Lily

Lilies are one of the most beautiful flowers appreciated by man, but as pleasant as it looks, it is still associated with a lot of death cases. Several varieties, including the tiger, day, Easter, Japanese, and Asiatic types are highly toxic to cats.

Just a taste of the pollen or a bite of the leaf of these plants can cause serious vomiting and lethargy within 12 hours of swallowing. The bad part is that you don’t take immediate measures to treat this condition; it can progress into kidney failure.

11. Cyclamen

This plant is also called soy bread, and it’s a common flowering houseplant. However, it contains terpenoid saponins, which are poisonous chemicals toxic to plants. If your cat ingests this plant, it can cause oral irritation, diarrhea, vomiting, seizures, heart abnormalities, and sometimes death.

12. Kalanchoe

Also called the mother-in-law plant, this common houseplant has small, dense flowers, with all parts containing toxins that are deadly to cats. When the plant is ingested, it can cause diarrhea and vomiting. In some cases, it can lead to heart arrhythmias.

13. Tulip

Every part of this plant is considered toxic, but the bulb is the most poisonous part of cats. If your cat ingests any part of the tulip plant, it can cause oral irritation, nausea, and excessive drooling. However, tulip ingestion should not be too fatal, except your cat ingest large quantities of the bulb, and this is uncommon in kitties.

14. Dieffenbachia

This is a common houseplant, also known as dumb cane. It can result in a burning sensation in the tongue, lips, and mouth of your cat when chewed or ingested. And this can progress into difficulty swallowing and vomiting.

This may not be too fatal, but it is usually an unpleasant experience for cats. So try as much as possible to keep this plant away from your home if you have a feline.

15. FoxGlove

You will commonly see the foxgloves in cottage garden schemes because they are traditional garden plants. But the ugly part is that they are one of the plants that are highly toxic to cats.

Just by ingestion, they can affect the heart, and in some severe cases, they can cause cardiac failure and death.

However, some cat owners conveniently grow foxgloves around their homes without any issue. But if you want to do the same, you have to keep a close watch on your kittens and younger cats and ensure they don’t go close to these plants.


Your four-legged friends are not too smart to know which plants to go close to and which to avoid. So now that you are aware of these plants that are highly toxic to cats, it is better to avoid growing them around your home. But if you will ensure they are grown in an area that is not easily reached by your cat.



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