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(21 Posts)
AnotherEmma Thu 01-Jan-15 05:19:31

We had a NYE party and some friends brought a lovely bunch of flowers including lilies. I know lilies are poisonous to cats so I set them aside (well out of the cats' reach) and explained to my friend that we couldn't keep them and they could take them home. They forgot to take them when they left... I had forgotten to throw them out before going to bed... Then woke up in a panic so went back down to throw them out!
Sorry if it's a pointless or boring story. But I really think bouquets containing lilies should be clearly labelled with a warning that they're poisonous to cats. You can't expect non-cat owners to know.

thecatneuterer Thu 01-Jan-15 05:32:40

I couldn't agree more. Last Christmas someone sent me some Interflora flowers - where the sender dictates the message and the florist writes it. The message said something about best wishes to me and all my cats. So the florist knew it was going to a house with cats, and they still sent a bouquet full of lilies. Florists need to be more aware and more proactive in avoiding sending bouquets with lilies to houses with cats. And flowers in supermarkets etc should be much more clearly labelled.

AnotherEmma Thu 01-Jan-15 10:59:43

I agree! It makes me quite angry when I think about it. So many people have pets that there should be regulation in place to ensure that anything poisonous to them comes with a warning label. Apparently not all cat owners know about it either which is worrying!

AnotherEmma Thu 01-Jan-15 11:04:56

PS I guess the Interflora florist didn't know, which is bad. Did you contact them about it?
I do think it's in the interests of florist to be clearer about it. The worst case scenario is that if you don't know lilies are poisonous, your cat(s) could die. But even the best case scenario, if you know they are, means having to refuse or throw away flowers given as a gift. Not a great customer experience either!

RubbishMantra Thu 01-Jan-15 19:52:08

Not pointless at all Emma.

People really need to be aware of this. I quite got into gardening this summer, and when I asked the garden centre staff which plants were poisonous to cats, they were clueless. They actually said people over-react about this kind of thing. shock

Fluffycloudland77 Thu 01-Jan-15 22:22:01

Sil gives me lillies every birthday & I put them in the bin.

We don't get on so you have to wonder.

RubbishMantra Fri 02-Jan-15 00:31:24

Give her some arsenic- laced chocolates on her birthday. wink

Fluffycloudland77 Fri 02-Jan-15 18:59:05

But that would mean buying her something on her birthday. I don't want to set a precedent.

I'm not troubled by morals wink

RubbishMantra Sat 03-Jan-15 01:17:49

But you'd only have to buy her something the one time......

Qwebec Wed 07-Jan-15 02:47:42

Has anyone met a cat that eats lilies?
Would the scent of the oriental lilies not put them off?
Genuienly interested as I've never heard of it and I'm a florist.
I've seen cats nibbling beargrass, fern and the like but nothing else.

thecatneuterer Wed 07-Jan-15 03:26:52

Qwebec. They don't need to eat them to be killed by them. It's the pollen that's the problem. If they brush against the pollen and then groom it off their fur, that's enough to kill them. Similarly if the lilies drop some pollen and they walk through it.

Lilies are really, really deadly to cats. Many other plants are only a problem if eaten. Arum lilies are in this category, and even then it will only cause illness and vomiting, not death. All other types of lilies are the deadly kind.

nooka Wed 07-Jan-15 06:23:51

I was given some beautiful lilies as part of a birthday bouquet and one of our cats ate little mouthfuls in them. I didn't know it was an issue at the time, and I don't think there were any side effects. I assume it was the same cat that eats all my tulips in the spring [grr]

RubbishMantra Wed 07-Jan-15 06:40:23

Mistletoe's extremely poisonous, also holly. <festive>

Anything grown from a bulb. (alium family)

But lillies are the worst, because of the sticky pollen dropping all over the place.

RubbishMantra Wed 07-Jan-15 06:42:50

Oh, and IME cats enjoy lovely flower smells, so likely to attract them, not repel.

Tealady1983 Wed 07-Jan-15 06:52:17

My beautiful boy would eat anything he was the regular fridge raider (he could open it himself) and we lost him on Christmas Day last year due to lily poisoning from flowers I had received for my 30th I had no idea. So yes they do eat them

LBDD Wed 07-Jan-15 06:56:34

As soon as the lilies open a little bit I pick off the bits with the pollen on them anyway as I hate the way they stain everything. Surely this is ok?

ShadowsShadowsEverywhere Wed 07-Jan-15 07:26:07

I didn't know this and have cats!!! Thank you for the heads up I honestly had no idea. Thankfully it's winter but in the summer I have flowers everywhere so could quite easily have unwittingly poisoned them shock

Tealady1983 Wed 07-Jan-15 09:48:57

LBDD as far as I know the entire flower stem petals the lots is toxic so if you have a muncher like I had I wouldn't have them in the house x

shaska Wed 07-Jan-15 11:04:13

Yes - as far as I know, if you're going to keep the lilies somewhere cats can't reach, or you absolutely trust them not to munch, or are prepared to risk it, then trimming off the stamens (the polleny bits) does help - though they're buggers for littering pollen everywhere, so likely some will end up on the petals/floor/you, in the process.

To be fair, I had cats and lilies for years as I didn't know, and it was ok - but it doesn't seem worth the risk now, as I can't imagine how awful I'd feel if it went wrong. Basically I'm preserving my own feelings, I don't think I could handle the guilt.

thecatneuterer Wed 07-Jan-15 13:31:14

Really it's not worth it. Just to have a flower to look at for a few days.

As Lonecat said on the other thread I think, the most common poisonings that come through our doors are lilies and antifreeze. And they are both really quite regular occurrences and generally fatal.

I'm just glad that the prevalence of lily beetle in the South of England means that not many people are successful at growing them in their gardens round here.

Qwebec Thu 08-Jan-15 02:05:48

wow! shock I'll be giving clients a heads up from now on! It's incredible that even the pollen can be so toxic and it's no more known.
thank you!

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