Is Dracaena Marginata Poisonous to Dogs?

By Naomi Millburn

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 pooches. Red-marginated dracaenas (Dracaena marginata) are definitely poisonous to canines, so always keep the plants far away from them.

About Red-Marginated Dracaenas

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. The U.S. Department of Agriculture indicates that red-marginated dracaenas are hardy from plant hardiness zones 10B to 11. The plants feature small white flowers and shiny, dark-green leaves that are trimmed with red edges.

Toxic Effects

The specific hazardous component in red-marginated dracaenas is not confirmed. This is why it's so crucial to keep your furry buddies 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 throwing up. A pair of tiny dogs who munched on the bark are believed to have passed away from its toxicity, according to the University of Florida Brevard County Extension, so never take this lightly.

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.

Cats, Too

Red-marginated dracaenas are also perilous to felines. Keep the things out of reach of all your furry household pets, regardless of species. Cats experience the same unpleasant toxicity symptoms as dogs, but with a few possible additional ones. Cats who ingest red-marginated dracaenas might show signs such as the widening of the pupils, rapid heartbeat and stomachache.

Names to Keep in Mind

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.