Quiz: Holiday myths debunked

Quiz: Holiday myths debunked

Poinsettias are highly toxic to dogs and cats.
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Dec 16, 2010
By dvm360.com staff

PoinsettiaYou chose myth: Correct!

Myth: Though traditionally thought of as quite toxic to pets, the relative toxicity of poinsettia plants (Euphorbia pulcherrima) has been quite exaggerated.

Threat to pets: The most problematic component of the plant are the irritants found in its milky white sap.

Signs: As the plant is chewed and the sap ingested, mild and self-limiting oral irritation, salivation, vomiting, and diarrhea may result. Contact of sap with the skin may also result in mild dermal irritation, redness, and itchiness.

Treatment: The majority of cases can be managed at home. Induction of vomiting should be considered in cases of massive ingestions. Occasionally, supportive care such as anti-emetics, gastroprotectants, and rehydration may be necessary. In cases of skin contact, bathe the pet with soap and water to remove the sap.

Prognosis: Excellent provided severe vomiting and diarrhea don’t result in dehydration.

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