are daffodils poisonous to cats

The short answer is yes. The whole plant is toxic, especially the bulb. As a part of the Amaryllidaceae family, daffodils are poisonous to cats, though rarely fatal. If your cat ingests any part of the plant, they can experience some level of toxicity.

Are Daffodils Poisonous To Cats?

are daffodils poisonous to cats

According to the ASPCA, daffodils and cats just don’t mix. Lovely though they are, these flowers can cause serious problems if they’re ingested or touched by your furry friend.

The offending toxin found in these low-maintenance plants is crystalline lycorine: an alkaloid that causes vomiting if consumed. Lycorine occurs in all parts of the daffodil, but is most concentrated in the bulbs. As such, the entire plant is off limits to your cat, but the bulb is by far the most toxic part.

The Pet Poison Helpline also informs us that needle-like calcium oxalate crystals contained in the outer layer of a daffodil’s bulb can cause skin irritation and drooling in cats.

What Are The Signs Of Daffodil Poisoning In Cats?

The amount and part of the plant that a cat eats will determine how severe their daffodil poisoning is. Poisoning symptoms may manifest as soon as two hours following ingestion. Pet owners are advised by the ASPCA to keep an eye out for the following symptoms of daffodil poisoning:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • abdominal pain
  • Salivation and drooling
  • Labored breathing
  • Shivering
  • Lethargy

Your cat may also have tremors, heart arrhythmias, and low blood pressure if she consumed a significant amount of the flower.

While more commonly seen in human gardeners who handle a lot of daffodils, some cats can also have pesky skin reactions to the plant. “Daffodil pickers’ rash” can develop in response to the plant’s calcium oxalate crystals: sharp particles that irritate the skin. These crystals are most concentrated in the sap of the stems and bulbs of daffodils.

In most cases, symptoms will clear up on their own within 12-48 hours. If you strongly suspect your cat has eaten a daffodil, however, don’t wait for symptoms to appear: act quickly, and call your vet ASAP. He or she will be able to advise you on what steps to take next.

Pets spending more time in the garden comes with its own risks

After accidentally poisoning herself while consuming a daffodil, an extremely astute cat climbed into her pet carrier to notify her owner that she was ill.

Asha, a rescue cat, was rushed to our emergency clinic in Nottingham after she became so ill that she was able to signal for help.

Downstairs from her owner Anna Shaw’s apartment, Asha consumed the flower in the shared backyard.

Now that more pets are probably going to be kept in back gardens during the coronavirus lockdown, Anna is eager to spread the word about the risks daffodils pose to companion animals.

Find an Emergency Vet Asha the Cat unintentionally poisoned herself by consuming a daffodil

Find your nearest clinic for immediate treatment.


What happens if my cat eats a daffodil?

The spring flowers contain a poisonous alkaloid that can trigger vomiting while crystals in the bulbs are severely toxic and can cause serious conditions such as abnormal heart rhythms or breathing problems in cats and dogs.

Can I have daffodils in the house with cats?

Unfortunately, daffodils and our feline friends are not a good combination, as these bright flowers are poisonous to cats and can cause some serious harm if ingested.

What is the most toxic flower to cats?

Cats and poisonous flowers and plants The most dangerous plant is the lily – all parts are toxic. However, there are other plants and flowers, both indoors and outdoors, that can be harmful to cats.

How toxic are daffodils?

All parts of the daffodil are toxic. When swallowed, it can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. Eating the bulb can cause severe irritation of the mouth and stomach upset. These symptoms are usually not life threatening and resolve within a few hours.