Are all lilies poisonous to cats?

All parts of the lily – including the stem, leaves, petals, stamens and pollen – are poisonous to cats.   Even minor exposures (cat chewing on a leaf or getting pollen on his or her haircoat or whiskers) can be fatal.

What are the signs of lily poisoning in cats?

Many cats vomit after chewing or eating parts of a lily.  However, if a cat has been exposed to a lily outdoors, the family may be unaware of the exposure.

Can my cat die from exposure to a lily?

Cats are exquisitely sensitive to lily poisoning.  While the exact toxin is still unidentified, cats who are not treated promptly develop acute renal failure and die, generally within 3-6 days afterwards.   Cats with acute renal failure typically have vomiting, depression, partial or complete loss of appetite and dehydration.  

My cat may have been exposed to a toxic lily. What should I do?

Cats who have been seen near lilies, as well as those who have definitely ingested any part of a lily, should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.  Cats who are treated within 18 hours of exposure to a toxic lily generally recover. However, in cases where treatment is delayed, the prognosis is generally poor and most cats are euthanized.

What can I expect will be done for my cat who has been exposed to a toxic lily?

Your cat’s veterinarian will provide certain medications to help your cat eliminate the plant.  In addition, your cat will receive intravenous fluids in the hospital for approximately 48 hours.  The veterinarian may refer your cat to a specialty or emergency hospital for continued care.  Bloodwork will be taken when your cat is admitted to the hospital and will be repeated in 24 and 48 hours.

Is treatment successful, if a cat is treated promptly?

Cats who receive the above care within 18 hours of exposure generally do very well. Cats who are treated later typically do not survive, even with aggressive therapy (such as dialysis).

Are there any effective at-home treatments for cats with lily poisoning?

Unfortunately, there is no home treatment that is successful in saving the lives of cats who are poisoned by lilies.

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