Keeping plants around dogs can be tricky business. Some dogs like putting their mouths on anything and everything they see, and not all plants are exactly innocuous to the unwitting pets. Red-marginated dracaenas (Dracaena marginata) are definitely poisonous to canines and cats, so always keep the plants far away from them. Dracaena and dogs don't mix.
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Red-marginated dracaena characteristics
Red-marginated dracaenas are members of the Agavaceae family. The attractive plants have a multitude of uses, and are frequently seen indoors and also outdoors in containers. Red-marginated dracaenas are hardy from plant hardiness zones 10 to 12. The plants feature small white flowers and shiny, dark-green leaves that are trimmed with red edges. This is a very popular houseplant that can easily grow to 6 feet tall or more, if not pruned.
Toxic effects of dracaena & dogs
The specific hazardous component in red-marginated dracaenas is not confirmed. This is why it's so crucial to keep your pets away from all parts of the plants. Dogs who consume any segments of these plants might experience a handful of side effects including feebleness, loss of balance, depression, diarrhea, swollen faces, lack of appetite, excessive salivation, and vomiting.
If you caught your dog in the act of eating any part of these plants, get him urgent veterinary care, even if he isn't showing any symptoms. If you notice any of these typical symptoms, get him immediate vet care even if you didn't see him eating anything out of the ordinary.
Toxic effects of dracaena & cats
Red-marginated dracaenas are also dangerous to felines. Keep the these plants out of reach of all your household pets, regardless of species. Cats experience the same unpleasant toxicity symptoms as dogs, but with a few possible additional ones. For instance, cats who ingest red-marginated dracaenas might show signs such as the widening of the pupils, rapid heartbeat, drooling, and stomachache.
Other names for dracaena
Since red-marginated dracaenas are known by a handful of monikers, it's a smart and safe idea to make sure you're familiar with all of them. Knowing that "red-marginated dracaenas" are dangerous to canines often isn't enough. If your pet spends the weekend at a sitter's house, you want to make sure that you don't assume something is harmless because it has a different name.
Other common handles for these toxic plants include Madagascar dragon tree, red-edged dracaena, straight-marginated dracaena, corn plant, and money tree. If you're ever unsure regarding the safety of a specific plant, don't hesitate to contact your dog's veterinarian.
The list of toxic plants dangerous to dogs, both indoor and outdoor varieties, is long. However, there are some popular pet-safe plants that are generally non-toxic to dogs including the African violet, or cape marigold; the African daisy, or gerbera; and the spider plant, or spider ivy; chickens and hens; and Christmas cactus. Note, though, that any plant can be toxic if ingested in high enough qualities. Keeping your pets from chewing any house plant is always the best plan.