Is Euphorbia Poisonous To Dogs

Amy Kat of Paradise Hills was shocked to find her maltipoo, Koopa, sick and her one-year-old great Dane-mix, Remi, hurt when she got home.

As Kat said, “I saw Remi had sap on his fur, and as I brushed it off, his skin rolled off with it.” “My infant, Koopa, was lying on the ground, surrounded by four mounds of puke. He was not responding.

Kat claimed that she was so terrified that she took both of her dogs to a Chula Vista emergency pet clinic. The veterinarian informed her that one of her garden pencil cactus succulents was to blame for the dogs’ illness.

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals states that the pencil cactus, also known as Euphorbia tirucalli, is poisonous to humans, dogs, and cats in all countries and can result in significant intestinal and skin damage (ASPCA).

The plants are referred to as “sticks of fire” by certain people. They might be the size of a tree or small enough to fit inside a container.

“Both humans and pets are toxic to the white, milky sap of this plant. When sap comes into touch with the skin, a painful rash appears there. According to Laura Eubanks, a succulent expert in San Diego, if the sap gets in the eyes, it can briefly render a person blind.

According to Kat, Remi was chemically burned on 30% of his body by the pencil cactus. Koopa, her second dog, was throwing up because he had consumed some of the herb.

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera, one of the most well-liked succulents, is regularly utilized for therapeutic and medicinal purposes. The plant’s extracts can be found in dietary supplements, cosmetics, and flavored waters, and its sap is traditionally used to heal sunburns.

However, pets may be poisoned by this succulent. Aloe has a reputation for causing nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea in animals, as well as making them lethargic.

Long, pointed tendrils are a distinguishing feature of aloe plants. Some types have foliage with white spots, while others bloom sporadically. Pets should not be allowed near any types.


Kalanchoes are prized for their profusion of flowers, which come in a variety of hues from soft pink to flamboyant orange. This tropical succulent is well-liked as a houseplant and goes by several names, including mother of millions, devil’s backbone, and mother-in-law plant.

This plant primarily causes vomiting and diarrhea by irritating the digestive system. Heart arrhythmias, however, can also happen.


Euphorbia is a vast and diverse genus of plants that encompasses anything from tiny, low-growing plants to gigantic giants.

Many succulents of the genus Euphorbia are harmful to both cats and dogs, including the pencil cactus and crown of thorns.

Ingestion of this succulent can cause a variety of poisoning symptoms, including gastrointestinal distress and eye and skin irritation.

It is advised to stay away from all euphorbia species, including the deadly poinsettia, if you have pets.


Similar to aloe vera, jade is a widespread, simple-to-grow houseplant that is common on windowsills. Jade plants resemble trees because to their thick, woody stalks and hefty, oval leaves.

There are various types of jade, and each one should be kept out of reach of animals. Your cat or dog may exhibit signs such as gastrointestinal distress and uncoordination if they consume jade.

Are animals poisonous to euphorbia?

Euphorbiaceae. There are roughly 2000 species, all of which have distinctive flower structures and milky sap (cyathium)

a typical indoor plant in non-tropical regions. Poinsettias are tall perennial shrubs that reach heights of 12 to 15 feet in the tropics.

accessible through commerce Dogs, cats, and people are not poisoned by poinsettias. In some persons, the other members of this huge plant family can cause severe skin and mucous membrane irritation, making them poisonous.

Comparatively speaking to other hazardous members of the Euphorbia family, poinsettias contain the least amount of complex diterpenoid euphorbol esters and steroidal saponins. These chemicals, which are significantly more abundant in other species of Euphorbia, are what cause irritation in the skin, eyes, digestive system, oral mucous membranes, and digestive tract. When the milky sap gets on their skin, in their mouth, or in their eyes, it might cause irritation in certain people. When animals are exposed to poisonous euphorbias, similar consequences can be anticipated.

Originating in Mexico, poinsettias have undergone extensive hybridization to emphasize the vividly colored bracts and leaves that have made them the most widely used plant for commercial Christmas distribution. The most common type features dark green alternating leaves and brilliant red bracts that encircle the tiny blooms (cyathium).

The size and form of members of the Euphorbia family range from huge trees to small, leafless plants with cactus-like characteristics. Some species are poisonous weeds that proliferate quickly (eg: E. esula)

Other typical Euphorbia species that are poisonous include:

Depending on whether they are thriving in a tropical or a temperate region, poinsettias are either perennials or annuals.

The lanceolate, alternating leaves. The upper leaves change into a variety of vivid colors, such as red, pink, yellow, white, or speckled.

The white latex sap in the plant’s leaves and stems is somewhat irritating to the mouth’s mucous membranes, and in some animals, ingesting the plant material can cause excessive salivation and vomiting. Compared to the parent species, the many varieties of hybrid poinsettias that are currently offered are considerably low in toxicity. A cat or dog is unlikely to exhibit any symptoms unless it consumes a sizable quantity of poinsettia plants. Animals are not seriously harmed by the contemporary poinsettias that are marketed commercially throughout the holiday season. This does not imply that a pet should be let to chew on plants if that is a habit.

The poinsettia plant has received a “Clean Bill of Health” from the Society of American Florists.

Poinsettias and other plants should, however, be kept out of the reach of young children and household animals that have a tendency to gnaw on or consume plants.

How dangerous is Euphorbia?

The milky secretion of the Euphorbia plant, sometimes known as latex, is extremely poisonous and irritating to the skin and eyes. This study provides an illustration of the range of ocular inflammation brought on by unintentional ingestion of Euphorbia plant latex. Three patients came in with recently developed accidental ocular exposure to milky sap of a Euphorbia species. In all cases, there was a significant burning sensation along with vision blur. Visual acuity decreased to counting fingers from 20/60. Clinical findings ranged from anterior uveitis to secondary increased intraocular pressure, mild to severe corneal edema, epithelial defects, and keratoconjunctivitis. With active supportive treatment, all symptoms and indicators disappeared after 10 to 14 days. When handling euphorbia plants, wear safety goggles. Asking the patient to bring a sample of the plant for identification is usually advisable.

Trees, succulents, and herbaceous plants all belong to the Euphorbiaceae genus.

[1] There are numerous kinds of Euphorbia that can be found growing in the wild or in gardens or homes as cultivated examples. The milky sap or latex is poisonous and can cause severe skin and eye problems. From moderate conjunctivitis to severe kerato-uveitis, ocular toxic response can vary [2]. There are a few case reports of people losing their sight permanently as a result of accidentally putting Euphorbia sap in their eyes. [24] Corneal involvement typically proceeds in a predictable order, with edema getting worse and epithelial sloughing on the second day. [3,5] Some species are thought to be more poisonous than others. [6] The inflammation usually goes away without leaving any aftereffects when it is promptly treated and carefully maintained. Here, we show three instances of ocular toxicity brought on by three distinct Euphorbia species: E. trigona (African milk tree), E. neriifolia (Indian spurge tree), and E. milii (Crown-of-thorns houseplant).

Euphorbia allergies in dogs?

Numerous branches belonging to the Euphorbiaceae plant family have a toxic reaction when cut and the sap leaks out, or in the case of pets, when the plant is bit into. The majority of the available information focuses on human poisoning caused by pencil cactus, however there is still a risk if you keep this plant in your garden where it could be accessed by an inquisitive animal.

When bitten, the pencil cactus will immediately hurt, which acts as a deterrent to massive ingestions of the plant. However, if exposed to the plant’s toxic sap, the cutaneous and, in particular, ocular damage that has been documented in humans can easily be attributed to the animal species. In an effort to keep animals away from their yards, many gardeners grow pencil cacti; while some creatures may be aware of the dangers of contact, others may suffer the repercussions.

The euphorbia tirucalli resembles a cactus but lacks the spiky needles that make a cactus a real cactus. Any portion of the plant can emit milky sap, which can cause symptoms like stomach pain after eating it or eye burning if it is an ocular exposure.

The plant species Euphorbiaceae includes the pencil cactus. This family has more than 1600 species across the globe. The pencil cactus, Euphorbia tirucalli, is poisonous to both people and dogs everywhere because it contains a milky material that can seriously harm the gastrointestinal system, the eyes, and the skin.

Are the thorns on Euphorbia poisonous?

The Crown of Thorns is a flowering plant species belonging to the spurge genus in the family Euphorbiaceae. It is also known by the popular names Christ thorn and Christ plant.

The connection to Christ is based on the biblical account of Jesus wearing a woven crown of thorns during the events leading up to his crucifixion. The crown was formed from the plant’s stalks.

On the other hand, the botanical name, Euphorbia milii, honors Baron Milius, the person who brought it to France at the beginning of the 19th century.

In Latin America and Brazil, it is known as Corona de Cristo and Coroa-de-Cristo, respectively.

It is a succulent that is native to Madagascar and is one of the few that has real leaves. because of its simple growth and bright, brilliant flowers that bloom virtually all year long, both inside and outside.

Although Christ thorn thrives in warm climates, it can be grown indoors in colder climates and is hardy in zones 9 to 11 in the United States.

Is Crown of Thorns A Poisonous or Toxic Plant?

Despite the fact that Euphorbia milii is typically regarded as a perfect houseplant. However, you must use caution if you are growing this species indoors, especially if you have kids or pets, as it contains deadly phorbol esters.

Additionally slightly poisonous, the produced sticky sap is known to irritate the skin and eyes.

What Parts Of Euphorbia Milii Are Toxic?

Ingesting any part of the Christ thorn can poison both people and animals.

Additionally, the plant’s damaged stems and leaves generate a sticky, milky fluid that includes corrosive compounds and irritants, so handling it requires extra caution.

What Are The Symptoms Of Poisoning?

The main symptoms of crown of thorns poisoning are throat and mouth irritation or blistering, excruciating stomach or abdominal discomfort, and vomiting.

Other signs that can affect both people and animals include emesis, increased salivation, weakness, and diarrhea.

The irritating sap produces dermatitis and edema when it comes in touch with the skin and eyes, respectively.

If sap accidentally gets into your eye, rinse it out right away with water and seek medical attention if it doesn’t improve within 15 minutes.

Horses who are exposed to Euphorbia milii may get severe blistering and an ankle hair loss.

How To Protect Yourself While Handling Crown of Thorns

It is advised to wear gloves and remove them right away after handling Euphorbia milii in order to avoid coming into contact with the sap.

Additionally, take care not to touch your body while working with the plant, especially your eyes.

Although the majority of animals are not drawn to this variety of Euphorbia, livestock animals do find it tolerable.

When they are starving and are not given access to their usual diet, pets and cattle animals may consume the leaves of the crown of thorns.

Which plants are harmful to dogs?

The following plants should never be made available to dogs under any circumstances since they are the most harmful to them: Castor oil or castor bean (Ricinus communis) Cyclamen (Cylamen spp.) Dumbcane (Dieffenbachia)

How should you handle Euphorbia plants?

To keep herbivores away, euphorbia has created a toxic sap that it will release if the plant is damaged in any way. On contact with your hands, the sap can lead to unpleasant irritation.

Horticulturist Alys Fowler states: “Euphorbia sap makes skin photosensitive, therefore handling it with bare skin in the sun can result in blisters.

If sap gets on your skin, wash it off completely with soap and water. The sap should be cleaned with soap or milk if it has congealed on the skin because it is no longer water soluble.

According to Colorado State University’s reference to hazardous plants, if the sap gets into your eyes, it can induce conjunctivitis and even lead to blindness.

Red or pink eye, another name for conjunctivitis, typically affects both eyes. According to the NHS, conjunctivitis symptoms include:

eyes that are red

a burning sensation, or gritty eyes

ocular discharge that adheres to the lashes


How can Euphorbia be eliminated?

Since Euphorbia tirucalli, often known as the pencil cactus, tolerates extreme neglect like other succulents and readily takes root from a little slice, it could be challenging to kill and remove. Pencil cactus thrives in USDA plant hardiness zones 10 through 11, but in colder regions, it withers away to the ground at the first sign of frost. The pencil cactus can reach a height of 30 feet when cultivated outside in the appropriate conditions. When removing pencil cactus, you should wear protective clothes to prevent skin irritation because the pencil-like branches contain a milky, deadly sap.

Use a pair of lopping shears or a pruning saw to make a clean cut through the main stem a few inches below the soil line. In order to reach the base, you might need to prune off a few of the lower branches. However, try to make as few cuts as you can to minimize the amount of sap that pours from the open wounds.

For one or two days, place the damaged plant on a hard surface apart from the soil to allow the sap to drain and the cut to heal and develop a callus. If the plant is a huge pencil cactus, cut it into multiple parts. Depending on the regulations in your neighborhood, dispose of the cactus with other yard garbage.

Apply a non-selective herbicide to the exposed trunk cut, such as one that contains around 25% glyphosate herbicide. Give the herbicide at least a week to reach the roots and completely kill the root system.

To ensure that the soil circle keeps as many of the roots as possible, dig a wide circle that is at least 12 to 18 inches away from the trunk. As you work to remove the roots from the earth, pull back on the shovel handle. Shake any extra soil off the root ball before removing it from the hole.

To get rid of any leftover roots from the pencil cactus, dig through the dirt. If the roots seem to go far beyond the hole where you removed the root ball, use a garden hoe or mattock to loosen the soil in a larger area. Throw away the root ball and its fragments.