The sight alone of a daffodil may make you feel giddy inside; after all, the vivid flowering bulbs make quite a vision. However, watching your cat frolic near one might give you cause to feel something other than giddy: worry. The fragrant plants are actually extremely toxic to felines.
Daffodils are showy flowering bulbs that are known botanically by the name Narcissus. The extremely low-maintenance plants emerge during the spring months and are staples in landscapes and gardens from the Mediterranean to northern Africa and western Asia. Daffodils are members of the Amaryllidaceae family. Other common names for the daffodil are "paper white" and "jonquil."
The ASPCA advises that daffodils are definitely poisonous to cats. The plants are toxic to not only felines but also other favored creatures including horses and canines. The risky elements of the plant are its alkaloids, including the crystalline lycorine. Toxic lycorine occurs in the bulbs of the daffodil. If your precious kitty consumes any part of the plant -- particularly the bulbs -- she may experience dangerous toxicity, so beware.
Symptoms of daffodil toxicity are often apparent in felines. Be on the lookout for key signs of poisoning, which are shivering, decreased blood pressure, seizures, diarrhea, excessive drooling, throwing up, nausea, tissue irritation, rapid heart rate, stomach pain, labored breathing and heart arrhythmia. If you have any reason to think your little one ate any part of a daffodil, seek emergency veterinary assistance for her before you even get the chance to spot any of these signs -- the faster the better.
Other Toxic Plants
Unfortunately, the list of plants poisonous to cats does not begin and end with the daffodil. A lot of plants can pose a threat to your pets, and the more you know about them the better off you and your pets will be. Some other plants hazardous to felines are branching ivy, Asian lily, meadow saffron, peacock flower, primrose and Roman chamomile. Keep your kitty away from all of these -- and from all other toxic plants. Her safety is worth all the precaution in the world.
- ASPCA: Plants Toxic to Cats
- ASPCA: Daffodil
- Pet Poison Helpline: Daffodils
- US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Daffodil Toxicosis in an Adult Cat
- CNN: What Plants Are Toxic to Cats?
- University of Missouri Extension: Daffodils
- Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service: The Narcissus
- Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images