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Beware the Bloom: Protecting Our Pups from Spring Flower Dangers

Now that spring has finally sprung in all of its brightly coloured glory, and I will soon be offering shoots in those magical Bluebells, I thought I'd take some time to warn pet owners of the dangers that some of these blooms pose to our four-legged friends.

The Hidden Threats of Spring Flowers

While the sight of blooming flowers may fill us with joy, it's crucial to remember that not all flora is safe for our furry companions. Many common spring flowers and plants contain toxins that can be harmful or even deadly to dogs if ingested. From gastrointestinal upset to organ failure, the consequences of flower poisoning can be severe, making it essential to be vigilant when it comes to our pups and their environment.

Many of you that know me, will also know that I have a young German Shepherd named Jax. This spring hasn't been quite the challenge that last spring was, when Jax was only around 5 months old and trying to eat every plant in the garden! So if you have a puppy, do be aware that many of our flowering plants that sprout during spring can be extremely toxic to dogs, and your pup may want to sample them all. Never take your eyes off them while out in the garden until they are over the stage where they try to eat everything they see.

Identifying Poisonous Flowers and Plants

To help keep our canine friends safe this spring, let's have a closer look at some of the most common flowers and plants that pose a risk:

  1. Daffodils: While their cheerful yellow blooms may herald the arrival of spring, daffodils contain toxins that can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, and even cardiac arrhythmias if ingested.

  2. Tulips: These colourful spring flowers may be a feast for the eyes, but they contain substances called glycosides that can cause gastrointestinal upset and, in severe cases, difficulty breathing and convulsions.

  3. Lilies: While not typically found in outdoor gardens, lilies are commonly used in floral arrangements and pose a significant threat to cats. Even small ingestions can lead to kidney failure in felines, making them a danger to households with both cats and dogs.

  4. Azaleas: These popular flowering shrubs contain toxins called grayanotoxins, which can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, weakness, and even cardiovascular collapse in dogs if ingested.

  5. Hyacinths: With their fragrant blooms and vibrant colours, hyacinths may seem harmless, but they contain oxalates that can cause oral irritation, drooling, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing if ingested.

  6. Rhododendron: Another common landscaping plant, rhododendrons contain toxins called grayanotoxins, which can cause gastrointestinal upset, drooling, weakness, tremors, and even cardiac arrhythmias in dogs.

  7. Foxglove: With its tall spikes of bell-shaped flowers, foxglove contains toxins called cardiac glycosides, which can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, weakness, tremors, seizures, and even heart failure in dogs if ingested.

  8. Autumn Crocus: This plant, also known as Meadow Saffron, contains toxins called colchicine, which can cause gastrointestinal upset, bloody diarrhoea, vomiting, seizures, organ damage, and even death in dogs if ingested.

  9. Lily of the Valley: These fragrant flowers contain toxins called cardiac glycosides, which can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, drooling, lethargy, seizures, and even death in dogs if ingested.

  10. Oleander: Known for its attractive flowers and evergreen foliage, oleander contains toxins called cardiac glycosides, which can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, weakness, cardiac abnormalities, and even death in dogs if ingested.

It's important to note that this is nowhere near an exhaustive list, and there are many other flowers and plants that can be harmful to dogs if ingested. An online search will help you find a more complete list, but when introducing new plants to your garden, do check out if they're safe first, and always seek immediate veterinary attention if you suspect your dog has ingested a poisonous plant.

Photography in Flowers

The bonus of beautiful blooms is that we can get some stunning photos of your dog amongst them if they don't try to eat them. From Bluebells to buttercups, daises to dandelions, your dog will look amazing with a backdrop of flowers.

Get in touch to book your shoot, bookings are limited due to the weird British weather we're having this year! How much rain!

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