Is Alstroemeria Poisonous to Cats?

by Naomi Millburn, Demand Media
    Keep the Peruvian lily away from curious kitty.

    Keep the Peruvian lily away from curious kitty.

    Cats are famously curious creatures, which is why it's very important to be cautious if your little one has free, unrestricted access to an outdoor garden. After all, a lot of different plants, including the Alstroemeria species, can produce potentially dangerous results in inquisitive and wide-eyed kitties.

    About Alstroemeria

    The South American perennial of the Alstroemeria species is known frequently by the name "Peruvian Lily," and also occasionally as "Lily-of-the-incas," too. The showy and bright flowering plant typically emerges towards the end of the spring and the beginning of the summer, and blooms in salmon, white, red, purple, pink and orange shades. The height of the plant generally ranges from about one foot to 4 feet tall.

    Toxicity

    According to the ASPCA, the Peruvian lily in excess can pose a problem to cats. If a feline somehow consumes inordinate amounts of the plant, health issues could arise. Since Alstroemeria is from the "Tulipa" family, its bulbs contain tulipalin A. The tulipalin A component includes potentially harmful toxins that can cause diarrhea, mouth irritation, vomiting, salivation and digestive irritation in cats. Because of the possibility of these effects, it is important to make sure your kitty never goes near the Peruvian lily, period.

    Bouquets

    Peruvian lilies are featured frequently in floral bouquets for many different occasions. If you ever receive a bouquet from a significant other, family member, friend or colleague, it is crucial that you thoroughly understand all of the contents before you bring it into your home. The last thing you want is your cat accidentally nibbling on a Peruvian lily, or something even more toxic, for that matter. According to the Oregon Veterinary Medical Association, Alstroemeria plants typically are significantly less dangerous than other lilies, such as Tiger lilies and Easter lilies.

    Other Plants

    Plant toxicity hardly begins and ends in the lily world, unfortunately. The stronger awareness you have of which plants are safe and which aren't, the better for your precious pet. A few other examples of common plants that are, indeed, toxic to the feline species include the Lenten Rose, Feather Geranium, Cape Jasmine, Dallas Fern and Rainbow Orchid. If you want to keep your cat healthy and happy, know your plants!

    About the Author

    Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.

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