Why Does My Dog Eat Plants?

Here's when you need to worry 🚫🌱

Does your dog seem to love chomping on your house plants?

While it’s definitely an annoying habit some pups have, it also isn’t the safest thing for your dog to do.

This is because there are some plants and flowers that are poisonous for dogs when ingested.

So, why do dogs eat plants anyway?

The Dodo reached out to Dr. Stephanie Austin, a veterinarian at Bond Vet in New York City, to find out why dogs eat plants and when it’s a problem.

Why do dogs eat house plants?

Having a dog who loves eating house plants (or plants in general) isn’t the most uncommon thing in the world. In fact, many tend to have a knack for stealing a leaf or two.

“This could happen for one of several reasons, such as a natural tendency to graze (the same way a dog would eat grass outdoors), curiosity (dogs explore with their mouths) or accidentally swallowing parts of a plant while trying to play with it,” Dr. Austin told The Dodo.

Are house plants safe for dogs?

According to Dr. Austin, some plants are safe to be eaten in reasonable amounts, while others may be poisonous or present a risk of intestinal injury or obstruction.

“Even ‘dog-safe’ plants that are non-toxic may still cause symptoms like vomiting when eaten,” Dr. Austin said.

In general, it’s best to choose dog-safe plants for the home, but still keep them out of reach of your dog if possible.

Like this Majesty Palm Floor Plant from Plants.com for $119.99

Or this Chinese Money Plant from Plants.com for $69.99

When to seek medical attention

If your dog has eaten part of a plant and you’re not 100 percent sure it’s safe, it’s best to call a veterinary practice or call a pet poison helpline right away.

“It’s better to be safe than sorry,” Dr. Austin said. “Try to identify the plant if you can, or bring a piece of the plant or take a picture if you go to the vet’s office. If your pet is showing symptoms, it’s best to seek medical attention.”

But even if your pup seems fine, remember that sometimes symptoms show up hours later, and it’s almost always better to seek care before symptoms start.

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