Are Tulips Poisonous to Dogs?

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Tulips make a colorful garden but they are toxic to dogs.

Nothing says spring quite like tulips blooming in your garden. While these pretty flowers add beautiful splashes of color to your landscaping, they can be hazardous to any dogs living in your home, especially if your pet treats your garden like a salad bar.


Perennials that bloom in the spring, tulips spring forth from planted bulbs. With few leaves, the bloom is the main visual focus of the tulip plant. They come in a wide variety of colors, including yellow, pink, red and violet. Tulips contain compounds called tulipan A and tulipan B. These compounds are found in every part of the plant and are poisonous to animals including cats, horses and dogs.


If your dog eats any part of a tulip, it could experience digestive problems like vomiting and diarrhea. If these problems are serious enough, they can lead to dehydration. Tulip ingestion can also cause hypersalivation, or excessive drooling. This is messy and can also contribute to fluid loss. Eating tulips can also cause depression. Because your dog does not feel well, it might lose interest in food and interacting with you or other members of your household.


If you dog eats part of a tulip plant, call your veterinarian. The first thing your veterinarian will probably recommend is watchful waiting. Keep an eye on your dog and make sure it can easily access the outdoors. Give it plenty of clean water to drink. Most cases of gastric upset pass in a day or two. If your dog's symptoms linger or if it loses interest in food and water, bring it to your veterinarian's office. She can help clear the toxic elements from your dog's system as well as provide supportive care like restoring fluids so your dog stays hydrated as it recovers.


The most poisonous part of the tulip is the bulb. If your dog likes to dig in your garden, fence off the area where you plant tulip bulbs so it cannot pull them out of the soil and eat them. If you bring tulips into your home, place them on tables or shelves that are high enough to keep them out of your pet's reach. If you do need to take your dog to the veterinarian, bring along a portion of the eaten tulip. It can help her decide how to best treat your dog.


Kay Wagers

Kay Wagers is a copywriter in Arizona and has worked for over five years for clients in a wide variety of industries. Wagers has contributed pieces to several fiction magazines and holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and in history from the University of Arizona.