Poinsettias are stunning plants; we just adore seeing them all over the place during Christmas. However, if you own a cat, you may worry if it’s genuinely good to have them indoors. It’s an issue since cats can climb high and chew on things they shouldn’t. So, are Poinsettias poisonous to cats?
Although poinsettia is not typically considered hazardous, it is bad news because it can ill your feline companion.
Below we look at what might happen if your cat consumes poinsettia, as well as the signs you must keep an eye out for.
What is the Poinsettia?
Poinsettias, known by their scientific name Euphorbia pulcherrima, are a plant commonly linked with Christmas. This is largely because their leaves are red, contrasting with their green stems. It’s popular as a holiday potted plant, but it’s a small tree that can grow over 10 feet tall.
Poinsettias are native to Central America, and it was there that Christian religious groups first started to associate them with Christmas. Thousands of these plants are cultivated yearly and aren’t only used for decorating during the Christmas season. They are perennials and may be maintained throughout the year, even though many people only give them attention around those specific days. But poinsettia leaves only to show up for a short time during the winter.
Why Are Poinsettias Poisonous to Felines?
The milky white fluid of poinsettias is known as latex sap, and this component of the plant is poisonous to cats. The bitter flavour of latex and the fact that it can be deadly if consumed in excessive quantities serve to prevent pests and other animals from feeding on the plant. This helps to ensure the plant’s survival.
Poinsettias are poisonous plants, although they pose a moderate threat to people and other animals. The plant’s white sap can trigger skin or stomach discomfort, but only in large quantities. The bad taste should keep you from eating more than a few bites, but you should still take steps to keep your kitty away from these plants.
How Are Poinsettias Dangerous for Cats?
The poinsettia does not pose a significant threat to kitties. The sap may cause tissue damage, so it’s typical for a cat’s mouth and oesophagus to get inflamed after consumption and to have stomach distress.
If the white sap comes to touch with the skin, it may cause irritation, swelling, and redness, particularly around the mouth. Sap can induce conjunctivitis and swelling of the eyelid if it gets into the eye under extremely unusual circumstances. Because poinsettias have secondary effects that harm felines, ingestion or contact with these plants should be avoided.
Signs of Poinsettia Poisoning
If your cat consumes a poinsettia, there may be signs of poisoning, such as the following:
- Eye irritation
- Frequent licking of the lips
- Lethargy or slowness
- Decreased appetite
Can Poinsettia Kill a Cat?
Poinsettia is known to be poisonous; however, a cat would rarely die from eating one. If the cat eats enough, it might produce an obstruction in the digestive tract, which is the most concerning risk. This is quite improbable due to the poinsettia plant’s characteristically bitter flavor.
What Should be Done if a Cat Eats Poinsettia?
Poinsettia poisoning in cats often only results in mild stomach or skin irritation, which tends to go away since the toxicity is so low. As a result, medication for ingesting a poinsettia is rarely required.
If you are sure your cat has consumed poinsettia leaves, the following steps are ones that you should take:
- You should make it possible for the animal to throw up. Since the symptoms are caused by eating the plant, we must let them throw up as soon as possible. It is only a good idea to make someone throw up in an emergency because doing so can result in more harm. It is clinically possible for a veterinarian to cause vomiting.
- If the skin or eyes of your cat have come into contact with poinsettia sap, you need to thoroughly rinse the affected area with a large amount of clean water. Talk to your veterinarian to determine whether your pet needs further drugs.
- To prevent your kitty from becoming dehydrated, always offer her fresh water to drink, and under no circumstances should you attempt to provide her with medication yourself. Only a skilled veterinarian can decide which medicines are best.
- But to be safe, if your cat has consumed any part of a poinsettia, you should get in touch with your vet as soon as possible and ask them what to do. You should also tell him about your feline friend’s health problems, such as heart disease or kidney disease. Also, bring the consumed plant with you if possible. It’s also helpful to know how much was eaten and how long ago it happened.
- There is no accurate antidote for poinsettia poisoning; however, your veterinarian may give your cat activated charcoal or drugs designed to induce vomiting to remove toxins that may be present in his digestive tract. Depending on the kitty’s need, they may offer supportive treatment such as anti-nausea, pain, or anti-inflammatory medication. In addition, your veterinarian may provide fluids through an IV to drain the toxins out of your cat’s body.
Cat-friendly Holiday Plants
Many pleasant Holiday plants are entirely risk-free to keep near your cat, including the following:
- Christmas cactus
- Frosty ferns (Selaginella kraussiana)
- Polka dot plants
- Nerve plants
Even though these plants are safe for your cat to eat, it might get sick if it eats them because it doesn’t usually eat plants. Keep them out of its reach to be safe.
However, the great news is that poinsettias are only moderately toxic, which means you do not need to worry as much about your cat being ill if he consumes a few bites of one of these plants. You should certainly keep your cat away from poinsettias just to be safe.