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My cat might have chewed part of a lily. What do I do?

Lilies are extremely toxic to cats. Any part of the lily (stem, petal, pollen, leaf) can be harmful to your cat, and the exposure is not dose dependent. This means that even if only a small portion of the lily was ingested, your cat can experience the poisonous effect. Lilies cause acute renal (kidney) failure in cats and this damage can be irreversible. If you suspect that your cat ate a part of a lily, the safest thing to do is to bring your cat into the hospital. If you can remember to do so, bring the flower (or take a picture of it) into the hospital to show the doctor. Treatment includes decontamination (inducing vomiting, administering medications to bind to the toxin), baseline bloodwork, and hospitalization for IV fluid therapy for 48-72 hours. Some cats require dialysis, particularly if they have signs of kidney injury on their initial bloodwork. Prognosis for cats who eat lilies is good, particularly when the toxin ingestion is caught early.


Every year Metropolitan Veterinary Associates organizes a 5K run/walk (leashed participants are encouraged to join) with all proceeds benefiting local non-profit animal rescue organizations.  To learn more about the MVA5K click here.

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