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Marge Says, "Can I Eat This?"

Spring has sprung and all the little plants are unfurling in the garden. It's this time that my cat Marge puts on a watchful eye to make sure her furry friends don't get into fresh garden greens that might be harmful.

Oh my word. I can understand a dog eating without discrimination but a cat?! My friend Sidney got himself into a world of hurt sampling unapproved plants in his backyard. What was he thinking? I'm going to blame it on spring fever. He must have been so excited about the warmer weather that he temporarily lost some of his superior feline senses.

After a day at the vet he came home good as new, but to avoid future mishaps I've written a little note to Sidney. Feel free to share it with your furry friends because even the brightest bulbs can dim every now and then. Myself excluded of course.

Dear Sidney,

So glad you're feeling better after your adventure at the vet. Nothing like hanging about with a bunch of yowling cats and barking dogs while huddled in a tiny crate to make a fellow evaluate his actions. I have a bit of advice for you my friend. If you have to ask yourself, "Can I eat this?" The answer is no. Although every backyard should be filled with feline friendly greens, it's just not so. It's just not so.

Now I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you were so excited about the sunshine and warm weather that you lost your head for a moment. But just to be on the safe side I'm sending you this list of plants that are harmful to pets. Read it in good health and by all means share it with your friends, especially the dogs. You know they'll eat anything that doesn't eat them first.

List of Plants that are Poisonous to Pets: (C = Cat, D = Dog)

Alfalfa (C)
Algae (D)
Almonds (D)
Amaryllis (D)
American Coffee Berry Tree (C)
Apricots (D)
Arrowhead Vine (D)
Asparagus Fern (D)
Autumn Crocus (D)
Azalea (D)
Blackberry (D)
Black-eye Susan (D)
Black Nightshade (D)
Bleeding Heart (D)
Bloodroot (C)
Boxwood (D)
Bracken or Brake Fern (D)
Bouncing Bet (C)
Buckeye (C & D)
Bull Nettle (C)
Burning Bush or Fireweed (C)
Buttercup (C & D)
Cactus (D)
Caladium (D)
Calla Lilly (D)
Carelessweed (C)
Castor Beans (C & D)
Ceriman (D)
Charming Dieffenbachia (D)
Cherry (D)
Chinese Evergreen (D)
Christmas Rose (D)
Chrysanthemum (D)
Cineraria (D)
Clematis (D)
Climbing Nightshade (D)
Clovers (C)
Cocklebur (C)
Cordatum (D)
Corn Plant (D)
Crabgrass (D)
Cornstalk plant (D)
Creeping Charlie Ivy (C)
Crocus (D)
Croton (D)
Crown of Thorns (C & D)
Cuban Laurel (D)
Curly Dock (D)
Daffodil (C & D)
Delphinium (C)
Devil's Ivy (D)
Devil's Trumpet (C)
Dogbane (C)
Dumb Cane (D)
Dutchman's Breeches (C)
Easter Lily (D)
Elderberry (C & D)
Elephant's Ear (D)
Emeral Feather (D)
English Holly (D)
English Ivy (C)
Eucalyptus (D)
Ergot (C)
Fern, Bracken (C)
Fiddle-Leaf Fig (D)
Fireweed (C)
Foxglove (C & D)
Glory Lily (D)
Gold Dust Dracaena (D)
Ground Ivy (C)
Hellaborus (D)
Hemlock (C & D)
Hemp (C)
Holly Berries (D)
Horse Chestnut (C)
Horse Nettle (C)
Horsetails (C)
Hyacinth (C &D)
Hydrangea (C & D)
Iris (D)
Ivy (C)
Jack-in-the-Pulpit (C & D)
Jamestown Weed (C)
Japanese Yew (C)
Jasmine (D)
Jerusalem Cherry (C)
Jimson Weed (C)
Jonquil (D)
Kalanchoe (D)
Kentucky Coffee Tree (C)
Klamath Weed (C)
Laburnum (D)
Lamb's Quarters (C)
Lantana (C & D)
Larkspur (C)
Ligustrum (D)
Lily-of-the-Valley (C & D)
Lupine (C)
Mad Apple (C)
Marble Queen (D)
Mayapple (C)
Milkweed, common (C)
Purple Mint (C)
Mistletoe (D)
Morning Glory (D)
Mushrooms (D)
Narcissus (C &D)
Nephthytis (D)
Nettles (D)
Nicker Tree (C)
Nightshade (C)
Nutmeg (D)
Oleander (C)
Ohio Buckeye (C)
Onion (D)
Oriental Lily (D)
Peace Lily (D)
Peach (D)
Pencil Cactus (D)
Periwinkle (D)
Philodendron (C &D)
Pigweed (C)
Plumosa Fern (D)
Poison Hemlock (C)
Poison Ivy (C)
Poison Oak (C)
Pokeweed and Poke (C & D)
Potato (D)
Precatory Beans (D)
Primrose (D)
Privet (D)
Purple Foxglove (D)
Red Emerald (D)
Red Princess (D)
Redroot (C)
Rhododendron (C & D)
Rhubarb (C & D)
Rubber Plants (D)
Sage Lily (D)
Skunk Cabbage (D)
Spider Plant (D)
Spring Bulbs (D)
Squirrelcorn (C)
Staggerweed (C)
St. John's Wort (C)
Stink Weed Stump Tree (C)
Sting of Pearls (D)
Sudan Grass (C)
Summer Cypress (C)
Taro Vine (D)
Tiger Lily (D)
Tinsel Tree (D)
Tobacco (D)
Tomato Plant (D)
Tulip (C &D)
Thorn Apple (C)
Wandering Jew (D)
Water Hemlock (C & D)
Water Icy (C)
White Snakeroot (C)
Wild Black Cherry (D)
Wild Onion (C)
Wisteria (D)
Yellow Jasmine (D)
Yellow Sage (C)
Yew (C & D)

Good To Know

Signs that your pet may have ingested a poisonous plant are continual vomiting, excessive drooling, diarrhea, refusal of food, pale gums or tongue, swollen tongue, abdominal pains, and/or convulsions.

Also, keep in mind that if your pet ingests a poisonous plant you should contact your vet or the ASPCA's poison control hotline at 1-888-ANI-HELP (that's 1-888-426-4435). This line is staffed by veterinarians who can tap into a database for information about various poisons and treatments. Be aware that there is a $45 fee for this service, which goes to support the hotline.