Poisonous house plants
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Many common house plants are potentially toxic. The last thing we want to do is beautify our homes with plants that poison our children or pets. This is what you need to know:
- The list of poisonous plants is to long too provide here, but the common types are the African Daisy, Aloe, Amaryllis, Azalea or Rhododendron, Begonia, Chrysanthemum, Cyclamen, Daffodil, Gladiola, most types of Ivy, Lilies, Morning Glory, Oleander, Pothos, Sago Palm, Tomato Plant and the Tulip/Narcissus. If you want a complete list, internet research or consulting your veterinarian or nursery staff should do the trick.
- The symptoms of poisoning depend on the plant consumed, but the most common physical symptoms are hyper salivation, vomiting, diarrhea, colic, abdominal pain, kidney and liver failure, tremors, loss of coordination, seizures, coma and even death. Depression is also common.
- Do not underestimate risks. Plant ingestion is the chief cause of the poisoning of children under the age of five, and thousands of our beloved pets die painfully every year because people disregard these risks. Still, safe plants vastly outnumber poisonous plants, so do your research and enjoy those plants that are safe.
- Through reward and punishment, teach your children and pets not to munch on plants, but do not assume you can stop them from doing it when you are not around. Thousands before you have gotten their families in trouble by thinking the same. You cannot always be present. Still, animals with enough vegetable fibres in their diets are less likely to chomp on plants, and you can try to move them outside your children's reach. The best approach is to avoid buying plants that are a health risk to your kids and pets.
- Take a sample of the plant to the emergency room or veterinarian with the poisoned child or pet, and have the phone number and address of your nearest Poison Centres available at all times.
Your children and pets cannot watch out for themselves. It is your job and privilege to take care of them and watch them through their development.