Cat owners are being warned about the danger of lilies after two kittens almost died after ingesting some of the flowers.
Natalie Briscoe who owns the kittens TC and Oakley had a bouquet in her house and she was concerned when she noticed yellow stain on their fur.
"I’d come upstairs and five minutes later the kittens followed me up and were covered in yellow pollen. They’re mostly white so it was very noticeable,”
“My first thought was where on earth had it come from and I tried to clean it off with baby wipes. It wouldn’t budge at all and it had stained all around their mouths. It looked like they’d been licking it.
“I had a feeling it was the flowers and sure enough on the table around them were leaves and pollen. I went on to the internet and typed in how to get pollen off a cat and the first or second thing that popped up was a story that had happened earlier in the year where a kitten had died after ingesting lily pollen.
“I don’t know anything about plants and I wouldn’t know what a lily would look like but I compared the photos and sure enough they were lilies. By this time I was in a panic.”
She took the cats to the Acorn Veterinary Surgery in Wirral who carried out emergency treatment to flush the toxins from their bodies and prevent irreversible kidney damage.
Many cat owners are unaware of the dangers of the plant, which is common in gardens and floral bouquets.
All parts of the lily including the stem, leaves, petals, stamens and pollen are poisonous to cats and even mild exposure to the plant such as a cat licking a leaf can be fatal.
Acorn Veterinary Nurse Martin Peters said: “Lilies are a common gift but even a single flower in a bunch can be very toxic. We are keen to warn more cat owners about the dangers and urge them to be aware of the types of plants which can cause their pet to be ill.
“For cat owners, being aware of this when receiving such gifts/plants is important because all of the plant, not just the flower is toxic. Exposure and ingestion can be fatal as the kidneys are damaged through death of the cells.”
A range of common household plants and shrubs are potentially fatal for cats when ingested. Where ingestion is not fatal, it is likely to cause severe enough damage to require intensive veterinary medication, supervision or a special diet.
Other plants which are poisonous to cats:
· Autumn crocus
· Sago palm