February 09, 2024 | General

Which Pet-Friendly Flowers Should I Buy This Valentine's Day?

Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, and along with the dinners and the chocolates, the scent of flowers will soon fill the air in homes all over the world. For pet owners, selecting the perfect bouquet can be tricky. In this article, we'll explore pet-friendly flowers, guiding you through the most popular choices for Valentine's Day while ensuring the safety of your furry friends. We'll look into which flowers are safe for your dogs and cats, highlight those that could pose a risk, and provide tips on identifying potentially toxic plants. 

What are the most popular flowers purchased for Valentine's Day?

When Valentine’s Day rolls around, there is one undisputed king of flowers, the red rose. The red rose is symbolic of romantic affection and billions are purchased every Valentine’s Day. If, for whatever reason it may be, your partner does not like red roses, there are a number of different options that people choose including tulips, orchids, lilies and carnations, according to Oasis Home and Hobby.

Dog lying next to a heart shaped decoration which has the message 'woof you be mine' on it

Which flowers are pet-friendly?

If you are a household of pet lovers, you will want to ensure your pets remain safe when you bring flowers into the home. The last thing you want on Valentine’s Day is a trip to the vet. So, to avoid this, here is a list of some pet-friendly flowers, according to Flying Flowers, that you can purchase for your partner that will spread the love to your pets too:

  • Roses: The symbol of love, roses are not only popular but also safe for pets.

  • Sunflowers: Sunflowers are not only pleasing to the eye of humans but also safe for pets to enjoy.

  • Snapdragons: Despite their meaning of "deviousness," snapdragons are actually safe for pets, though it's wise to keep them out of reach.

  • Gerbera Daisies: Bright and cheery, gerbera daisies are a great addition to any home, safe for both cats and dogs.

  • Limonium: With wispy, pastel-coloured flowers, Limonium is relatively safe for pets, although you should keep it out of reach.

  • Lisianthus: Lisianthus symbolises appreciation and gratitude, making it a thoughtful choice for any occasion including Valentine’s Day, and safe for dogs and cats.

  • Pitto: This leafy foliage poses little risk to pets.

  • Statice: Fluffy purple statice adds colour to bouquets and arrangements while being pet-friendly.

  • Stock: These rustic blooms are safe for cats and dogs to be around.

  • Waxflower: Waxflowers can brighten up your home for up to 10 days, all while being safe for your furry friends to be around.

Video: Which Spring plants can be harmful to pets?

The PDSA has put together a helpful video to explain the plants that grow in the Spring season that are toxic for pets, which you can watch below:

What flowers are toxic for dogs?

There are, unfortunately, a number of flowers that are classed as being toxic for dogs. These flowers should be avoided on Valentine’s Day if you have a pooch in the house, even if they are your partner's favourites. Animal Friends Pet Insurance say that the following flowers are toxic:

  • Daffodils: Daffodils contain toxins that can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, and even cardiac issues if ingested by dogs.

  • Ragwort: Ragwort poses a threat to dogs, as it contains toxins that can lead to liver damage and other serious health issues.

  • Lilies: Lilies, especially varieties like Easter lilies, can be highly toxic to dogs, causing kidney failure even with minor ingestion.

  • Tulips: Tulips contain substances that can irritate a dog's mouth and gastrointestinal tract, leading to drooling, vomiting, and diarrhoea.

  • Peonies: While peonies are beautiful, they contain compounds that can cause gastrointestinal upset and other symptoms in dogs if ingested.

  • Hyacinths: Hyacinths contain toxins that can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, and skin irritation in dogs if they come into contact with the plant or ingest any part of it.

If you are concerned about any flowers that you are bringing into the house, or if you have brought any flowers into the house and your dog is reacting you should consult with a vet, or use the toxic plant identifier provided by PocketVet.  

What flowers are toxic for cats?

As well as dogs, cats can also react badly to certain flowers when they are in the household. Again, to avoid potential harm coming to your cat, it is important to be informed about plants to avoid. Here is a list provided by Cats Protection about flowers that could be toxic: 

  • Asiatic Lily: Asiatic lilies can cause kidney failure in cats, even with just a small amount ingested.

  • Convallaria: Lily of the Valley contains cardiac glycosides, which can lead to vomiting, diarrhoea, and heart arrhythmias in cats.

  • Easter Lily: Easter lilies are highly toxic to cats, causing kidney failure and potentially fatal consequences even with minimal ingestion.

  • Japanese Showy Lily: This variety of lily poses a similar risk to cats, containing toxins that can lead to severe kidney damage.

  • Madonna Lily: Madonna lilies contain substances that are toxic to cats and can cause gastrointestinal upset and other symptoms if ingested.

  • Roselily: While this lily variant may lack pollen, all parts of the plant are still toxic to cats and can cause serious harm if ingested.

  • Royal Lily: Royal lilies are another variety of lily that can cause kidney failure and other severe symptoms in cats.

  • Rubrum Lily: Rubrum lilies contain toxins that can lead to gastrointestinal upset, drooling, and other symptoms in cats.

  • Stargazer Lily, Oriental Lily: These lilies are highly toxic to cats, causing kidney failure and other serious health issues if ingested.

  • Star of Bethlehem: Star of Bethlehem plants can cause vomiting, drooling, and abdominal pain in cats if ingested.

  • Tiger Lily: Tiger lilies are toxic to cats and can lead to kidney failure and other severe symptoms if ingested.

  • Western or Wood Lily: This variety of lily contains toxins that can cause gastrointestinal upset and other symptoms in cats.

Again, if you have these plants in your home this Valentine’s Day and your cat appears to change or is ill, you should consult with a vet. If you are unsure whether or not the flowers you have purchased are toxic you can check using the PocketVet toxic plant identifier.

How can I check if a plant is toxic for my pet?

Ensuring the safety of your pet should be paramount, even on Valentine’s Day. There are a few ways that you can check if a plant is toxic for your pets. You can do your research before you purchase any plants, check toxicity lists online, consult with a vet, or use the PocketVet toxic plant identifier which can accurately identify toxic plants on your phone.

What are the symptoms of pet poisoning?

If you have unfortunately purchased a plant that could be toxic for your pet for Valentine’s Day, or if your pet is behaving strangely since you have purchased flowers then there are a number of symptoms that you should look out for that could identify pet poisoning. The main symptoms to keep an eye on, according to the PDSA, are:

  • Low Energy: Noticeable decrease in activity levels or lethargy.

  • Vomiting: Unusual or frequent episodes of vomiting.

  • Diarrhoea: Loose or watery stools, possibly containing blood.

  • Changes in Urination: Increased drinking and urination or difficulty urinating.

  • Pale Gums: Gums appear pale or discoloured.

  • Muscle Twitching: Involuntary muscle movements or twitching.

  • Tremors/Seizures: Uncontrolled shaking or convulsions.

  • Difficulty Breathing: Laboured breathing or respiratory distress.

  • Collapse: Sudden loss of consciousness or collapse.

  • Drooling: Excessive salivation or drooling.

  • Decreased Appetite: Loss of appetite or refusal to eat.

  • Behavioural Changes: Unusual behaviour such as confusion, agitation, or aggression.

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