Protect your furry friends from these toxic flowers

Pick your poison

Story by Kennedy Gott

Dogs love to use their noses to sniff and admire the world around them. However, when they decide to stop and smell the flowers, it could be harmful to their health. As flowers begin to bloom, sprouting from the ground and spreading their petals, it is important to know which of these beautiful blossoms your pet should avoid. 

To ensure your dog’s safety this season, try to practice their “leave it” command more often, and don’t forget to reward them with treats. Try to keep harmful flowers out of their reach in your garden or inside your home so that you can feel at ease. If your dog does come in contact with or ingest one of these toxic flowers, you should contact your trusted vet immediately or the Pet Poison Helpline at 855-764-7661

Thankfully there are still plenty of lovely flowers that are safe, even if your dog has a little nibble. These flowers are considered dog-friendly, so you don’t have to worry about having these in your garden or home: roses, snapdragons, orchids, petunias, sunflowers, violets and honeysuckles.


Also known as: Mums, chrysanths

Toxicity level: Mild

Toxin: Pyrethrin

Symptoms: Vomiting, lack of appetite, diarrhea

Fresh bright chrysanthemums. Japanese, korean style. Background for a beautiful greeting card. Autumn flowers in the garden. Flowering yellow chrysanthemums


Also known as: Lobster flower, flower of Christmas Eve

Toxicity level: Mild

Toxin: Diterpenoid euphorbol esters and saponin-like detergents

Symptoms: Drooling, licking lips, vomiting, diarrhea, skin irritation (including redness, swelling, and itchiness), eye irritation.

Closeup of red poinsettia flowers (Euphorbia pulcherrima)


Toxicity level: Severe

Toxin: Cardiac glycosides

Symptoms: Cardiac arrhythmias, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, cardiac failure, death

White Oleander flower- Nerium oleander

Calla Lily

Other common names: Trumpet lily, pig lily, arum lily

Toxicity level: Mild-moderate

Toxin: Oxalates

Symptoms: Drooling, oral pain, pawing at the mouth, vomiting, decreased appetite

Calla lilies close-up.

Baby’s Breath

Also known as: Maiden’s Breath

Toxicity level: Mild

Toxin: Gyposenin

Symptoms: Vomiting, lack of appetite, diarrhea, lethargy

Baby's breath (gypsophilia paniculata) flower on white background.


Toxicity level: Mild

Toxin: Paeonol

Symptoms: Vomiting, diarrhea

Close-up of flowers Pink peonies . Beautiful peony flower for catalog or online store. Floral shop concept . Beautiful fresh cut bouquet. Flowers delivery


Toxicity level: Mild

Toxin: Cyanogenic glycoside

Symptoms: Vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy

Beautiful blue hydrangea or hortensia flower close up. Artistic natural background. flower in bloom in spring


Toxicity level: Mild-moderate

Toxin: Lycorine

Symptoms: Drooling, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, increased heart rate, abdominal pain, abnormal breathing, cardiac arrhythmias

Beautiful yellow daffodils. Narcissus.


Toxicity level: Mild-moderate

Toxin: Allergenic lactones or similar alkaloids

Symptoms: Drooling, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, increased heart rate, increased respiratory rate, difficulty breathing

Tulip flower with green leaf background in tulip field at winter or spring day for postcard beauty decoration and agriculture concept design.


Also known as: Crowfoot, butter cress, figwort

Toxicity level: Moderate

Toxin: Protoanemonin

Symptoms: Oral or facial blisters, facial swelling, excessive salivation/drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, lack of appetite

A close up of a yellow Meadow Buttercup flower. Also known as a Common, Giant, or Tall Buttercup, it is an invasive species. Presqu'ile Provincial Park, Brighton, Ontario, Canada.


Toxicity level: Moderate-severe

Toxin: Grayanotoxins

Symptoms: Drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, abnormal heart rate, heart arrhythmias, weakness, hypotension, depression, tremors, transient blindness, seizures, coma

Pink azaleas in the park

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