Toxic Poinsettias, Rigid Ribbons Not The Cat's Meow Over Holidays

Dec 22, 2020

According to ownership statistics published by the Washington Post, there are more pet cats than dogs in the U.S.  If you’re a feline fan, here are some warnings about holiday hazards over this “shut in” season.

Take care of your feline friends this pandemic holiday season. These house plants, lily and poinsettia, are toxic to cats.
Credit Tiffany Eckert

Meeeow! If you have a cat, you know they can NOT resist a string.

Dr. Sarah Yamada works at The Veterinary Hospital in Eugene and also does relief shifts for the Emergency Veterinary Hospital in Springfield. She’s seen it all with cats.

“Ribbon ingestion. You get some vomiting but the major concern there is linear foreign bodies- where the ribbon gets stuck in the intestine and kind of saws through,” she said. “And that can be very serious and require surgery.”

The Veterinary Hospital's Dr. Sarah Yamada goes into surgery with colleagues to save a pet.
Credit The Veterinary Hospital

Yamada also warns about toxic exposure to lilies. “And other houseplants that people get during the holidays-- like Poinsettias,” she said. “Poinsettias are toxic to cats.”

Dr. Sarah Yamada and her cats are planning a safe, injury free holiday.
Credit Sarah Yamada

Yamada said even pine needles can sicken a kitty. To be safe, she suggests to just keep all plants, ornaments and wrapping materials out of the cat’s grasp.

Meeeoww mic drop.