Fact checked

What Plants are Toxic to Dogs?

Dog Care
2 minute read
Many different plants are toxic to dogs, including tulips, irises, hyacinths, and poinsettias. One that people often forget about...
Expert reviewed by:  
Written by:
Susana Bradford
Published on:  
November 15, 2022

There are many products toxic to dogs lurking around the gardens and lawns of a typical house. Responsible dog owners are almost always careful to keep dangerous substances and foods like over-the-counter drugs, chocolate, and alcohol out of the reach of curious pets. Not all know, however, that many common plants in the garden and the wild,such as lilies or tulips, can poison a dog. A comprehensive list of plants that are toxic to dogs can usually be found at local animal shelters, many of which can point to dangerous plants that are particularly common in a specific area.

A large number of common garden plants are toxic to dogs. Many lilies can be considered poisonous, sometimes resulting in death. Narcissus, tulip, iris, hyacinth, and daffodil bulbs are all toxic to dogs, usually causing vomiting and diarrhea. Ferns that grow in the garden can be highly toxic, including asparagus ferns, lace ferns, and emerald ferns.

Many other popular flowers are toxic to dogs as well. Poinsettia, rhododendron, and oleander flowers are all poisonous. Holly and mistletoe are dangerous and are often used indoors as decoration. Aloe vera is a common indoor plant, and it too is toxic. It is important to note that all these plants can be dangerous whether growing in a pot or sitting cut in a vase, so it's particularly important to keep them out of pets' reach when in the house.

In the wild, there are many plants that pose dangers to dogs. Hemlock and nightshade are poisonous to both humans and dogs, but because they are poisonous to people as well, most areas attempt to keep these plants to a minimum. Buttercups are poisonous for dogs, and it can be difficult to catch the dog eating this plant if it is playing in grass. The acorns and leaves of oak trees are toxic to dogs, but this is primarily a danger when there is an oak tree in the yard where the dog plays, as a large quantity of leaves and acorns must be consumed to cause problems.

When growing plants intended for human consumption, it is important to remember that some of these may make a dog sick, too. Grapes, onions, garlic, chives, and tomato plants can all make dogs sick. It is a good idea to fence in the garden if a dog has access to it.

The list above is only a small selection of the plants that can cause a dog serious illness or death. It may be more difficult to keep track of and identify plants that a dog eats outdoors, so it is particularly important to be familiar with these less distinctive plants. Any plant that will live near a dog should be first investigated to make sure that it will not kill the dog if consumption occurs. Even though only certain parts of these plants may be toxic, it's not usually a good idea to wait and find out which part of the plant the dog ate. A speedy trip to the vet may save a dog's life.

Get helpful pet care information and other helpful resources by visiting Pettable's blog.

Meet the author:
Susana Bradford

Susana is an avid animal lover and has been around animals her entire life, and has volunteered at several different animal shelters in Southern California. She has a loving family at home that consists of her husband, son, two dogs, and one cat. She enjoys trying new Italian recipes, playing piano, making pottery, and outdoor hiking with her family and dogs in her spare time.