October 2, 2011



"Life is not the way it's supposed to be.... It's the way it is....The way we cope with it, is what makes the difference."

Plant & Flower Safety
Presentation by Mona Mi Ricca
Dedicated to our friend, Angel Twix.

Welcome!! There is a lot to be covered so sit back, relax and learn. Please be alert! There will be refreshments afterwards.

Do you know what the words Toxic and Poison mean?


A substance that causes injury, illness, or death, especially by chemical means.
2. Something destructive or fatal.


1. Of, relating to, or caused by a toxin or other poison: a toxic condition; toxic hepatitis.
2. Capable of causing injury or death, especially by chemical means; poisonous: food preservatives that are toxic in concentrated amounts; a dump for toxic industrial wastes.

While Mommy was helping me do research for my presentation, we were stunned by how many plants & flowers can be harmful and even kill animals. It is so sad to think it can happen so easily and sad to say it has. One of ATDR's pups recently died from chewing on a Sago Palm. Unknown to his owners, that it could kill him, their entire yard was landscaped with them. That is the reason I am giving this presentation today. We have only chosen a few to tell you about BUT there are hundreds, maybe thousands, out there. Mommy says she will never buy another plant or flower without reading about it first. 

First the good news!

My Mommy's beloved Hibiscus flowers aren't poisonous. They have a nice, tart flavor and they're high in vitamin C, which is why we want to eat them. Now if it would just start raining again, lots more than it has in the last few day, so they will grow again in our backyard.

If everybody is ready lets get started.........


Sago Palm

The most deadly of all plants is the Sago Palm.........

These plants are called Sago Palms and are highly poisonous to both pets and humans. A chemical in the plant called cycasin is toxic and often causes permanent liver damage as well as neurological damage if enough of the poison is absorbed by the body. The seeds are the most poisonous part of the plant and the effects on us can be seizures, coma and death.

A true story from October 3, 2007:

We were letting our dog play outside all day Sunday and upon checking on him found that he had yanked a small houseplant off of the deck and was chewing on the root of it. He chews on all kinds of plants in the yard and I thought of tossing it over the fence but figured he would just try to dig under to get it so unfortunately I let him keep it. A couple hours later we let him in the house and he’s foaming yellow froth, drooling, and shaking. 20 minutes later we are in the emergency vet and are told the prognosis is not good and he’ll likely die.

Fortunately our dog was one of the lucky ones. I later discovered that our dog vomited the plant in the yard soon after swallowing it, and after 2 days in the vet on IV, and having a ball of charcoal inserted in his stomach, a test revealed that his liver was recovering and he came home. Sadly few people are aware of how dangerous this plant, many have lost their dogs, and even many veterinarians are unaware. This plant doesn’t carry a warning label and is becoming popular in Walmart, Lowes, and Home Depot so spread the word. Best advice I’ve read: Don’t let your animal chew on any plants.

I say........."Keep them things out of our yards. Better safe than sorry!!"


Don't Let Your Dog Eat Acorns by The team at Fido Dog Treats.

More than fifty varieties of oak trees grow throughout the United States. As autumn sets in, these lovely trees will begin dropping their acorns into yards, fields, and forests. Although acorns are a grand example of the variety of nature, they can be harmful to dogs. Small amounts of acorn ingestion typically cause no more than minor illness, although the gallotannins they contain can cause kidney damage. Typical symptoms are stomach upset, vomiting, diarrhea, or constipation, while whole acorns can also block your pup's digestive tract. Make sure you keep an eye on your pooch when you go out for walks, especially if it's the type that eats first and asks questions later.

I say....."Mighty, majestic Oak trees grow from acorns, so lets just leave them alone so we can enjoy napping under the the trees limbs instead of being buried under them".

English Ivy

English ivy looks gorgeous cascading down from a hanging basket and hanging is a good place for this toxic plant. Cases of animals and human poisoning from English ivy has been reported over the years. Serious symptoms of convulsing, difficulty breathing, vomiting, paralysis, and even coma may be exhibited after eating English ivy.
I say............"If our peeps gotta have em, hang em high in the trees so them dang tree rats can eat them."


Sad to say there are many of our favorite flowers that can make us very sick. Here are just a few.


Toxic to Dogs, Toxic to Cats: Toxic Principles: Lycorine and others.

Clinical Signs: vomiting, depression, diarrhea, abdominal pain, hypersalivation, anorexia, tremors.

Listen up peeps.....if any of us ingests this plant, contact your local veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435.


Although they look safe and beautiful, Chrysanthemums can be harmful and even fatal at times. These flowering plants typically bloom during the autumn season and have many uses. The blooms of Chrysanthemums look much like daisies, but they can be detrimental if ingested. Both the leaves and stalks of these decorative plants are poisonous and they can even be fatal if a large portion is ingested.

Easter Lilly

Lilies are DEADLY to cats.

Lilies are deadly to felines, as those with cat health cover policies may or may not know.According to Telegraph pet specialist Peter Wedderburn, the flowers contain a poison that is deadly to felines.He said there is a lack of awareness of this threat in the UK. Easter, Japanese, Stargazer and Tiger varieties can all provoke kidney failure.


Hydrangeas have become a popular container plant in many areas. During budding, the plant becomes attractive to pets who find the buds irresistible and may give them a taste. Eating the leaves and buds can cause serious side effects such as abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, lethargy and possibly coma.

Angels Trumpet

Angel's trumpet is a relative of jimson weed, a smaller plant that grows wild and that has long been a subject of teenage lore,"because it makes them feel relaxed and calm." In dogs it causes nausea, delirium and difficulty breathing.

Morning Glory

The Morning Glory plant is a funnel-shaped flower that typically opens in the morning. This gives it time for pollinating just before it dies in the afternoon. Morning Glory plants bloom fresh each day so there is a new bloom to be pollinated each morning. These are beautiful floral blooms that come in shades of purple, hot pink and violet blue. These can be extremely dangerous if eaten, causing the same effects as LSD. Hallucinations and nausea are two of the minor symptoms that the Morning Glory causes, but more serious effects include convulsions and even death.


Often referred to as “Coyote’s Eyes,” the Buttercup plant generally includes yellow or white flowers with a yellow center. Some of them have a red and orange color, but they still have a yellow center on them. Generally, the Buttercup plants blossoms in April or May and continues to bloom throughout rest of the summer. They have a bad taste to them and their juices have a tendency to cause skin ulcers and intestinal problems.

FOR ALL OUR PEEPS....... PLEASE learn the difference between poisonous plants and non-poisonous plants. While plants may seem harmless and add a sense of decor to OUR home, some of the poisonous plants can be fatal to US and kids if they are ingested or in some cases, even if these plants are touched. Even if you keep all of your plants where WE and kids cannot reach them, the leaves and blossoms can still fall to the floor and these are just as harmful. Recognizing the names and characteristics of poisonous plants can help you avoid these types of plants and choose plants for your home that will NOT be harmful to US and kids.
One more very important thing! Listen up pups!!

While we are out & about sniffing all the pretty flowers, but not eating them, keep away from snakes. They can kill us even faster than a poisonius plant or flower.

Hope you all have learned to be a little more cautious around plants and flowers. Make sure your peeps were paying attention. Have a good day and enjoy the rest of our DWB Community Safety Week.

Now let's EAT!!

For our peeps.

FOR US ....

Even better and more for us doggies, after all, it's all about us.


Maggie and Mitch said...

That was a most informative post, Mona! Thank you!
Those cupcakes sure look yummy!

Love ya lots,
Maggie and Mitch

Mack said...

THANK YOU so much Miss Mona for this very informative post. Our mom is always wondering what is and what isn't poisonous. Now she knows!!

Sunday Sugars,

Sarge said...

Hey Mona!
Wow, what a pawesome Safety Week event! I had no idea so many plants are bad! I have acorns everywhere, so I'll be avoiding those fur sure. I also have copperheads and rattlesnakes in my territory so that's another great reminder! Thanks for doing such a wonderful job!!! :)
Grr and Woof,
Sarge, COP

Sarge said...


Frankie Furter said...

WONDERFUL Post Miss Mona!!! I did NOT know about hydrangea.. I have one in my yard... I pee on it all the time. AND... ACORNS??? Who knew. They are everywhere around here.. and at Sarge's house..

I'll bet that my dad digs up my PeePlant... hehehehe
I also want to say that there was a dawg in Columbus... that died this spring... from eating Sago Palm. It was a horrible way to die.. They helped him go to the bridge.. beclaws it was so bad.

Benny and Lily said...

very good info. Those treats are so cute
Benny & Lily

road-dog-tales said...

This was an awesome post and we sure learned some important stuff! Thanks for working so hard to bring us this very informative lecture!
And now, we're making a bee line for some of those yummy pupcakes!

The Road Dogs

A MilShelb Mom said...

Mom found this to be very useful since she has been working on making a plan for our yard. Right now she hasn't bought anything for the back yard, only the front, but this will come in useful when she does!
~Milly and Shelby

♥♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥♥ said...

Such a very important and informative post, Mona. We didn't know about a lot of those flowers. Mom had an Angel Trumpet on our deck and when she learned about its toxicity,she immediately moved it to the front of the house where we pups never get to go.

Thanks for sharing all this great info.

Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, Ciara, and Lightning

Amber DaWeenie said...

Very good postee, Mona. Mom has always wondered why the plants and flowers that we buy can't be labeled in some way. They stick in little labels saying how to plant the plant, indicating how cold or how hot a temperature the plant can tolerate, and some other information about it. Why can't the nurseries also indicate on the information tag whether the plant is poisonous to pets or humans. Maybe everyone should get together and write to places like Lowe's, Home Depot, and all the other places where plants are sold.

Anonymous said...

Oh what great info! My Mom knew about a lot of the stuff but NOT about the acorns! She was suprised! Such a pawsome Safety Week post!!

Congrats on a great job and Thanks too for all the info.

The pupcakes were devine!

woos, Tessa

Asta said...

Sweet Mona and Weenie
Thank you so vewy much fow all that VEWY impawtant infowmations to help keep all of us safe.

GULP my Mommi's name is Amawillis,, I hope hshe's not poisonoos too
I will be vewy caweful wif all those pwetty flowews and plantses
smoochie kisses

Mr. Pip said...

Oh my goodness, I learned so much!!! I had no idea about Hydranga - we have one in our yard and I have relieve myself near it. BOL!

Your pal, Pip

ArtemisiaFSS said...

Wow we didn't realize so many plants were harmful. We sure didn't know that about Hydrangeas. Thanks for the info. Sorry we were late to class. Glad there were some treats left they are scrumptious.

Tweedles -- that's me said...

We did not know all these poisonous things.
Thank you for taking the time to tell us.
I only knew about grapes

Pippa said...

What an excellent post. Thank you so much for pulling together all that info.