Pet Insurance Blog - Holiday Plants and Your Pet

Last year, the ASPCA® Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) received 8,000 calls from pet parents with questions about potentially poisonous plants and flowers. To help, the ASPCA experts have the following guidelines for pet parents to follow when decorating with holiday plants this season.

• Flowers such as lilies may cause kidney failure in cats if eaten. Also, while roses are not toxic, the stem’s prickly thorns could be harmful if your pets get a hold of them. 

• The more traditional plants such as holly and mistletoe can be dangerous for felines and dogs alike, causing gastrointestinal upset or, in rare cases with mistletoe, cardiovascular issues. Instead, try non-toxic decorations like wood, fabric or pinecones.

• Christmas tree water likely contains fertilizers and bacteria, so your pets could suffer from an upset stomach if they drink it.

• Finally, a long-held holiday myth suggests that the poinsettia plant is toxic to pets. In reality, poinsettias cause only mild to moderate gastrointestinal irritation. Keeping this plant out of your pets’ reach is still a good idea, but there’s no need to get rid of it altogether.

If any of your pets ingest something hazardous, the APCC can help at 1-888-426-4435. A $65 consultation fee may apply, 80% of which is covered by ASPCA Pet Health Insurance.


As we’re dedicated to making a difference for pets, we want to keep you informed about pet health topics and your ASPCA Pet Health Insurance plan. Our blog will provide you with fresh, interesting and informative topics—from pet health tips and customer stories, to the latest industry news and a Pet Parent Q&A column. Most of all, we encourage you to share comments and join the discussion!

Meet the Author

Julia H.

Social Media Coordinator

Pet Parent to:

Lucy, an 8-year-old rescued Golden Retriever/Chow Chow mix

Blog Guidelines

While we’ll strive to present all viewpoints on this blog, comments will be reviewed before posting. Offensive or inappropriate language, off-topic remarks and comments containing personal policy information will not be featured.

Also, conditions discussed in this blog aren’t necessarily covered by every ASPCA Pet Health Insurance plan. For full coverage terms, conditions and exclusions, please refer to your plan.

As always, if you have a question about your plan, call us at 1-866-204-6764.

*Note: While these testimonials may include examples of recent claims payouts, reimbursement is subject to the terms and conditions of your plan. Identifying information has been changed.