Lilies

These beautiful plants may brighten your home, but lilies are highly toxic to your cat.

All parts of the lily plant are poisonous to your cat- the petals, the leaves, the stem, and even the pollen. If your cat ingests as few as one or two leaves, or even a small amount of pollen while grooming her fur, she can suffer severe kidney failure.

  • There are several types of lilies that are toxic to cats. Some types include:
    • Lilium and Hemerocallis species and commonly referred to as Tiger lilies, Day lilies, and Asiatic lilies.
    • These types are popular in many gardens and yards, so please note that they can also result in severe acute kidney failure.
      • These lilies are also commonly found in florist bouquets, so it is imperative to check for poisonous flowers before bringing bouquets into the household.
  • Other types of lilies – such as the Peace, Peruvian, and Calla lilies – are usually not a problem for cats and may cause only minor drooling.
  • It’s better to be safe than sorry, so please check which type of lily are are purchasing before you bring any flowers or plants into your home.

Symptoms of lily poisoning

  • In most situations, symptoms of poisoning will develop within 6-12 hours of exposure.
  • Early symptoms include:
    • Vomiting
    • Loss of appetite
    • Weakness or lethargy
    • Excessive thirst or urination
    • Racing or irregular pulse
  • Symptoms worsen as kidney failure develops. Some cats will experience:
    • Disorientation
    • Staggering
    • Seizures

What Should You Do?

  • If you see your cat licking or eating any part of a lily, call your veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline (1-855-764-7661) immediately.
  • Bring a sample of the lily with you to the veterinarian’s office.
  • Tell the veterinary staff how much of the lily your cat ingested.
  • While there is no specific antidote to counteract lily poisoning, the sooner you get your cat to the veterinarian, the sooner treatment for kidney damage can be started.