Mandatory animal toxicity warning labels on lilies
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It has recently been discovered that all parts of the lily flower and plant are poisonous to cats if eaten, and the effects are very serious and very fast. Only a very small amount needs to be eaten to cause devastating effects.
The poison acts mainly on the kidneys and is absorbed very rapidly. The first sign is usually severe vomiting but cats may also show loss of appetite, depression, salivation, twitching or collapse.
A high number of them will die due to irreversible kidney damage. Others will survive but have permanent kidney damage. Only a lucky few will survive without long-lasting effects.
The result of poisoning includes expensive and intrusive treatment, with bills (if uninsured) of up to $2000. That is based on 48 hours of treatment.
We know this firsthand because it just happened to our 12 year old cat Spunx. On 11/11/13 we had to let her go after being in the animal hospital for 3 days. Lilies had been my favorite flower and every so often we would get a few for the house. My birthday bouquet included a couple. She was a curious cat and must have got to them. It was painful seeing her suffer and she lost so much weight. No cat should have to go through that pain and no cat owner should have to feel the guilt and watch their loved one whither away like that.
Being that Lilies are sold at grocery stores, drug stores, gas stations, florists, and even online, it is critical that there is greater awareness. I propose mandatory labeling of all lily plants sold, providing clear and comprehensible information on the lethal effects of the plant on cats.
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