Lilies almost killed my boy.

gazoo

O.G.
Aug 26, 2006
8,601
2,079
US
I've had my rescue cat since March and hadn't had fresh flowers in the house since his arrival. Almost 2 months ago, my sister brought me a gorgeous bouquet of lilies and baby's breath. I ran to put them in water and placed them on the dining table, then ran to my DH's office to tell him about them and how wonderful they smelled. We walked together to see them, maybe 30 seconds later, and our kitty was nibbling on the leaves. He ate about a half of one full leaf, before we shooed him away.

It hit me that they might be poisonous, so I googled and was horrified to find that indeed they are known to be poisonous to cats. I put the bouquet in the garage and called the vet. Of course this was a Sunday, (why does EVERYTHING happen on the weekends?). We ended up having to go to an emergency clinic and long story short, they told me there was little to be done as even with invasive methods, there was only a 30% chance of survival and the treatments are stressful, etc. They told me to watch for changes in eating/drinking and check that he could pee ok.

He stopped eating for 2 days or so and drank little. He lost 4.2 pounds pretty much overnight of that first day. At the 4th day he started eating normally again and peeing normal amounts. He's yet to recover the full 4 pounds lost. He's made 2 up. He is now at 16.4 pounds so it's not like he's frail or anything. He was strong, thankfully, and has been deemed out of the woods by the vet.

So my question is, do you cat owners forgo fresh flowers entirely, or are there certain flowers that are safe? I have some faux palms and ficus trees inside the house that he loves to chew on. He never removes the leaves, just chews the leaves, open mouthed and then saunters off.
 

Myrkur

Góðan Daginn
Jun 9, 2011
6,188
525
Aw, poor guy! Thank god he's okay. We always have flowers and plants in the house, but our cats don't eat it, so it's never been a problem.
 

Collie5

Member
Jul 25, 2012
420
2
Northern California
I have completely given up on having fresh flowers/plants in my house where my cats can get to them. Both my Birmans are older now and can no longer jump up onto things, but when they were younger there was no place safe to put flowers. They always got to them and wanted to chew on them. I have silk plants, and they still insist chewing on those too! It's okay as far as I'm concerned, I'll leave the plants and flowers to the outside of the house. My cats are my babies and I'd rather have them than the flowers. :smile:
 

clevercat

catwoman
Sep 29, 2008
13,345
4,469
Where the heart is
I have completely given up on having fresh flowers/plants in my house where my cats can get to them. Both my Birmans are older now and can no longer jump up onto things, but when they were younger there was no place safe to put flowers. They always got to them and wanted to chew on them. I have silk plants, and they still insist chewing on those too! It's okay as far as I'm concerned, I'll leave the plants and flowers to the outside of the house. My cats are my babies and I'd rather have them than the flowers. :smile:
Gazoo, you must have been frantic! I am so glad your boy is OK, lilies are so dangerous - I know of a Siamese cat who died after simply brushing by some lilies and then licking his coat....
I'm with Collie5 on this - the only time I have flowers in the house is if I am completely sure they are safe. If I have the slightest doubt (someone sent me a beautiful arrangement last year - it went out into the recycling bin immediately as the florist, when I called to check they were animal-safe, hadn't got a clue), I don't take the risk. It's just not worth it. Maia-Annabel wants to nibble everything and the thought of something happening to her doesn't bear thinking about....
And you're right - EVERYTHING seems to happen on a Sunday, or a holiday, doesn't it.
 

cats n bags

Stinky's Mum
O.G.
Jun 24, 2008
2,148
188
I don't leave fresh flowers out, both for the safety of the kitties, as well as the safety of the furniture. My cats like to taste the plants, and end up pulling the vases over and spilling the water all over.

I wish people would ask first before sending flowers or plants. I appreciate the thoughts behind them, but around here it is just safer to enjoy the flowers growing out in the yard.

I'm glad your kitty was OK after the scary incident. :hugs:
 

gazoo

O.G.
Aug 26, 2006
8,601
2,079
US
It was a really bad week. Just waiting and watching him. I cried for two weeks, expecting the worse. Poor guy, I must have driven him nuts, following him around every time he left the room. His pee's were extra tiny for that week.

You guys are right - the fright and risk isn't worth it just to have flowers inside. I worry about planting lilies in the yard, which my DH suggested so that I could enjoy them through the window, since we have one neighborhood kitty that seems to love our yard. He's a warrior looking boy with a half tail that everyone feeds but no one can get near.

The vet said if my boy hadn't been young and strong, he'd have been "a goner".
 

buzzytoes

Dog Chauffeur
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Jun 7, 2008
15,807
800
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6600 Feet Above Sea Level
I had no idea they were so dangerous!! Glad your boy is ok!! I don't buy fresh flowers because one of our cats tends to nibble on them and it's a pain in the a$$ to buy beautiful flowers, only to have pieces strewn about the table. I do have some houseplants that no one bothers other than someone pooped in a planter once. I am not the biggest green thumb in the world so maybe that's why they leave them alone. :biggrin:
 

oggers86

Member
Dec 7, 2008
3,572
8
34
Leicestershire
I have hayfever so fresh flowers arent something i want in the house. I cant stand the smell of lillies either so no danger of them being within a foot of me.

I will occassionally get roses for special occassions but they seem harmless to cats. They did nibble on the leaves last year so id never take the chance of something which might be poisonous.

Glad your cat is doing better :smile:
 

Sez

Bag lady
O.G.
Apr 17, 2007
794
0
London
I am really glad to hear your little one is ok.

I don't forgo flowers, but I know that lilies are highly toxic to cats so they are banned from my house. Even if the cats aren't interested in flowers - which mine aren't - a bit of pollen brushed onto the floor and licked off paw pads could be enough. I am careful about where I put other flowers, but my two never pay them any attention - if they did I might not have them in the house.
 

juneping

couch potato-ing
O.G.
Jun 11, 2007
17,801
909
NYC
Gosh - I didn't know some cats ignore plants and flowers.
mine was still standing in front of the plant even after i removed it days later. i was wondering what she's staring at...it's nothing there....:lol:

OP
- i am so glad the kitty is out of the wood and doing fine.
 

Yorelica

O.G.
Jul 21, 2006
2,581
2
So glad your kitty is alright gazoo! My dear that is scary but good thing you discovered the root to the problem!