Diseases and MedicinesHealth

Indoor plants that are hazardous to health

Houseplants are available in the homes of many Russians, and even those who keep pets. Meanwhile, some of the flowers can be deadly for both dogs and cats, which are known to inadvertently try to plant a tooth.


Despite the many negative superstitions, dieffenbachia is one of the most favorite plants of home gardeners. Dieffenbachia is beautiful, unpretentious and very fast growing. However, this plant should not be kept in a room where children are located, as well as animals. The fact is that dieffenbachia is poisonous. Scientists say that the composition of the juice, which is contained in the leaves and stem of the flower, contains calcium oxalates, alkaloids and cyanide compounds. These substances cause burns, pain and even swelling. Interestingly, this plant was once called “dumb rods” and used to punish slaves. The slave was given a small dose of juice, and he, due to edema of the larynx, lost speech for several days. A large amount of dieffenbachia juice can even lead to respiratory arrest. It is clear that for a small animal it will be quite enough.


This plant has become popular among fans of indoor flowers relatively recently. Nightshade really looks very cute on the windowsill, but its greens and fruits are very poisonous. The affliction of nightshade is called solanine. Symptoms of solanine poisoning are abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, shortness of breath, convulsions, loss of orientation, rapid heartbeat, dilated pupils. This toxin inhibits the nervous system and can cause paralysis of the respiratory system. Moreover, for the death of solanine you need quite a bit. For example, a lethal dose for a dog will be only 0.6 g per 1 kg. weight of the animal.


Spurge is also one of the most popular plants among fans of indoor plants. A lot of domestic plants belong to the euphorbia family: they are white-euphorbia, and poinsettia, which is also called the “Bethlehem star,” and euphorbia, obese, resembling a cactus in its shape, and euphorbia triangular and many others. Euphorbia is so called because its leaves, stem and other parts contain white milky sap. This juice contains the substance euphorbin, the result of contact with which can be increased salivation, rapid, but weak pulse, nausea, dizziness, blood in the stool, respiratory disorders, convulsions, depression of consciousness. It is noteworthy that the poinsettia mentioned above is included by the United States Animal Welfare Society in the list of indoor plants most dangerous for pets.


An evergreen shrub with beautiful flowers is surely an ornament and pride of many homes. However, experts advise even to take care of oleander gloves. And if there are animals in the house, then it is better to refuse this plant. The shrub juice contains cardiac glycosides (oleandrin, cornerin and others). These substances cause vomiting, diarrhea, and cardiovascular disorders. Due to these properties of the plant, in some cases, the use of any of its parts can even lead to cardiac arrest. That is why oleander is included in the list of plants that are not recommended for preschool institutions. Animals, unlike children, are usually very careful in handling plants, but it happens that even super-prudent cats often fail in instincts.

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