What garden plants are toxic to dogs?

Most people assume that their pets won’t come to any harm whilst roaming around their garden at home. Whilst this is likely to be the case, you need to be aware of certain plants that can be toxic to your dog. Whilst some won’t cause much more than an upset stomach, others can be lethal. Read on to find out what garden plants are toxic to dogs. 

6 toxic garden plants for dogs

What garden plants are toxic to dogs?

If you have a dog, it’s important to be aware of the most toxic garden plants for dogs. This will help you to keep them safe and healthy now and in the future. Fortunately, most dogs are unlikely to eat plants that are poisonous to them or at least eat enough of them to cause them significant harm. However, since some can be deadly to dogs, it’s important to quickly identify these so you can avoid growing them. Keep reading to learn what garden plants are toxic to dogs. 


Azaleas are a popular garden plant in the UK. However, if ingested, they can cause a range of digestive symptoms, including drooling, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. An upset stomach isn’t the only risk to your pooch. If your dog eats azaleas in a large enough quantity, they can even be fatal. This is because they contain grayanotoxins, which disrupt the sodium channels affecting both the skeletal and cardiac muscles.


There’s nothing better than seeing daffodils appear in March. They are often the first sign that Spring is upon us. However, despite their beauty, there are toxic to dogs and can cause them to become very sick. Daffodils are poisonous if they eat either the bulbs or flowers, with an upset stomach the most common symptom. Dogs that have ingested daffodils may vomit and feel very sleepy. In more serious cases, they may also have fits.


Tulips have always been a popular flower due to their vibrant and cheerful appearance. However, because they contain a substance called glycosides, they can be harmful to animals if ingested. All parts of the plant are poisonous, however, it’s the bulb that is most dangerous. This is because the bulb contains the most alkaloids. 

Tulips can cause irritation to your dog’s gastrointestinal tract. This usually results in symptoms ranging from minor drooling to sickness and diarrhoea. However, in the worst cases, heart problems and breathing difficulties can occur. 

Buttercups Dogs Playing

Species of buttercup are commonly found in gardens throughout the UK. Although many people believe they’re flowers, gardeners understand that they are a perennial weed that’s difficult to control once it takes over a lawn. Buttercups are poisonous to dogs, containing a chemical known as ranunculin. When crushed or chewed, it turns into the toxin protoanemonin – a bitter-tasting oil that can cause irritation to the gastrointestinal tract. 

Fortunately, the bitter taste of buttercups means that dogs generally won’t eat enough of them to become very poorly. In most cases, symptoms are limited to mouth swelling, drooling, and vomiting and diarrhoea. If buttercups are consumed in large amounts, tremors and even seizures can occur. 


Begonias are a popular plant due to the fact they can provide continuous colour to a garden throughout the summer up until the first frost. They are easy to care for too, growing well in partial shade. However, it’s important to be aware when planting begonias that they can be toxic to dogs. They can cause digestive issues if ingested, including vomiting and diarrhoea. 

Even though the most toxic parts of the plant are located under the soil, it’s best to keep them out of reach of your dog. One option is to plant them in hanging baskets so that your pet can’t access them.


Bluebells grow happily in a shady garden, adding colour and charm each spring. Despite their appeal, it may not be a good idea to plant these flowers if you own a dog. Bluebells are toxic to our furry friends, causing a wide range of unpleasant symptoms if ingested. As well as causing digestive problems, they can also affect the heart. This is because bluebell plants and bulbs contain ‘scillarens’, which are chemicals that reduce heart rate.

Look out for toxic plants on dog walks 

Dog walks can be a time for your dog to run free and burn off excess energy. However, you need to be aware of the dangers posed to your dog whilst out exploring your local area. There may be toxic plants around that could cause your pet serious harm should they ingest them. For this reason, it’s important to keep a close eye on your dog at all times whilst walking them. 

What should I do if my dog has eaten a toxic plant?

Since dogs are naturally inquisitive, it’s possible that your pet could ingest a toxic plant at some point. If this happens, you may need to act quickly. Watch them carefully to see if they display any signs of poisoning, most notedly sleepiness or digestive issues such as vomiting. If they do, contact your vet as soon as possible. Don’t wait to see if they get better or worse before getting in touch.  

Before taking them to the vet, write down what you think your dog has consumed, how much of it they’ve swallowed, when they ate it, and what symptoms they’ve been having.  

Contact us 

For professional dog boarding in Rotherham or Maltby, contact Jaycliffe Pets. We’re one of the best-established dog kennels in the area, serving the local community for many years. We can provide you with expert advice on what garden plants are toxic to dogs. Call us on 01709 645 046 to discuss your pet’s boarding needs. You can also send us a message via the website if you prefer.