are hydrangeas poisonous for cats

According to Pet Poison Hotline, cats will become poisoned by eating any part of the hydrangea plant. The toxic component of the hydrangea is called cyanogenic glycoside. The flowers, leaves, buds, and stalks all contain the poison, but the buds and leaves contain the most toxin.

Treatment of Hydrangea Poisoning in Cats

Since there is no known cure for hydrangea toxicity in cats, treatment consists of symptom management.

The degree of clinical symptoms and the quantity of hydrangea consumed determine the course of treatment.

In cats that are otherwise healthy but have recently consumed a toxin, your veterinarian may choose to induce vomiting in order to eliminate the poisoning source and stop additional toxin from entering the bloodstream.

In extreme circumstances, plant material may be physically removed from the stomach by gastric lavage, also known as stomach pumping.

If your cat is just experiencing upset stomach, your veterinarian will probably recommend antibiotics and antiemetic drugs to treat diarrhea and vomiting.

Fluids will be administered subcutaneously (under the skin) in mild cases of dehydration or intravenously (IV) in more severe cases to treat the dehydration.

In extreme cases, your cat might require hospitalization for supportive care, which might include oxygen therapy if they are having trouble breathing.

If your cat’s heart rate is elevated, you can use an EKG monitor to make sure their heart rhythm is normal and administer medication to help stabilize their heart rate.

Why Are Hydrangeas Poisonous to Cats?

Cyanogenic glycosides, which are found in hydrangeas, have the potential to be toxic to cats and other animals, including humans. The chemical released when the plant is chewed or consumed can result in a number of symptoms, including nausea, diarrhea, and lethargy.

When cyanogenic glycosides come into contact with specific digestive system enzymes, they have the ability to release cyanide. Though the degree of toxicity varies according to the particular hydrangea species and the quantity consumed, it’s crucial to remember that cats can be hazardously exposed to any amount of cyanide.

All 75+ varieties of hydrangeas contain toxins that, in large enough doses, can be toxic to cats. However, the Bigleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla) is the variety of hydrangea that is most toxic to cats. This plant contains an ingredient that, if consumed in large amounts, can make cats throw up, have diarrhea, and become lethargic. The toxin in Bigleaf hydrangea flowers is also more concentrated there than in the plant’s leaves or stems.

Though some varieties of hydrangeas might be more hazardous than others, any kind of plant can pose a risk to cats when consumed in significant amounts. See a veterinarian right away if you think your cat may have eaten any part of a hydrangea or another plant.

What Should I Do If My Cat Has Eaten a Hydrangea?

Your cat should see a veterinarian right away if you observe any of these signs or believe they have consumed any part of the hydrangea plant.

Whenever possible, it’s a good idea to bring a portion of the plant to the veterinarian so that they can make sure it is properly identified. This will help your veterinarian treat your cat’s symptoms.

If your cat doesn’t have any symptoms, you can call the Pet Poison Helpline (855-764-7661) for advice, but often with this type of toxicity, they will recommend a visit to the vet as well.

Time is of the essence if your cat has consumed a significant amount of hydrangea, as toxicity will worsen over time and the toxin will continue to be absorbed.

If you suspect a poisoning, do not induce vomiting at home unless your veterinarian specifically instructs you to do so.

The chances of causing vomiting are frequently higher than the possibility of your cat developing mild hydrangea toxicity because severe toxicity is uncommon.

To make sure there are no additional health issues, your veterinarian will conduct a physical examination and review previous blood and urine tests. To rule out other possible causes of your cat’s digestive distress, they might even advise an X-ray of your cat’s abdomen.


What happens if a cat eats hydrangea?

Symptoms of Hydrangea Poisoning in Cats Vomiting. Diarrhea (sometimes with blood) Decreased appetite. Lethargy.

Are hydrangeas toxic to pets?

Hydrangeas Are Toxic To Dogs The leaves, buds, flowers, and bark all contain the toxin, so if your dog munches any part of your hydrangeas, he could get sick. Hydrangeas also are toxic to other pets like cats and horses.

How toxic are hydrangeas?

Sadly, the entire plant, including the flower buds, is quite toxic to pets and children. All parts of Hydrangea contain traces of cyanide. Accidental ingestion could cause shortness of breath, dizziness, fainting, and a rapid pulse. Severe cases of poisoning could also lead to convulsions and death.

Are roses and hydrangeas safe for cats?

While some types of hydrangeas may be more toxic than others, any type of plant can be dangerous to cats if ingested in large quantities. If you suspect that your cat has ingested any part of a hydrangea or any other plant, seek veterinary attention immediately.