Dieffenbachia (dumb cane) plant

1)    Human prescription products- including pain medication, antidepressants, amphetamine -containing medication, heart medication, blood pressure medication. Now more recently any marijuana-based formulations found in oils, edible products or inhalants.

2)    Over-the-counter medications including acetominophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen, naproxen (Advil), overdosing on Aspirin, kaopectate and peptobismol, and nasal decongestants including pseudoephedrine. Watch also for OTC syrups that contain xylitol (a sugar substitute).

3)    Insecticides including some knock-off flea/tick insecticides available online or retail stores. Some contain a higher percentage of pyrethrin-based product which can be very toxic to cats. Application of a higher dose to your pet can also be toxic. Ensure proper dosage and application to prevent problems.

4)   Pet medications and chewables. If ingested in large amount at one sitting can cause major problems including liver and kidney issues.

5)    Household products including bleach, laundry detergent pods, toilet cleaner tablets, undiluted vinegar, anti-freeze (garages), carpet shampoo and certain essential oils.


6)    People foods including chocolate, xylitol, avocados, onions/garlic, grapes/raisins, macadamia nuts and alcohol.

7)    Plants including rhododendrons, azaleas, sago palm (seeds), flower bulbs (daffodils and tulips), Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane), black walnuts from black walnut tree, castor bean (seeds), mushrooms (Amanita, Galerina and Lepiota species), marijuana, wild cucumber, and last but not least, lilies (tiger, day, Asiatic hybrid, Easter, Japanese Show, rubrum, stargazer, red, Western, and wood lilies – all of which are highly toxic to cats!) Do not let cats drink the water where these bulbs were placed as well. When in doubt, avoid all parts of the plant!

8)    Rodenticides : First generation products that contain warfarin, pindone, coumafuryl, coumachlor, isovaleryl indanedione; Intermediate anticoagulants (chlorophacinone and in particular diphacinone): second generation products that contain brodifacoum, bromadiolone, difethiolone. 

9)    Lawn products/fertilizers

I wish I could say that we live in a perfect world and our pets are the most well-behaved creatures. Sadly this is not true. Dogs and cats have very keen sense of smell and can be drawn to many products including certain people foods, insecticides, and other household products. I have listed below the more common products that we see every now and then at the clinic.

If you suspect your pet has consumed or been exposed to any toxic product, it is important that you remain calm. Call your veterinarian or ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) at (888) 426-4435.