How Long After Eating a Calla Lily Will a Dog Get Sick?

by Victoria Lee Blackstone
    The calla lily is an immediate irritant and toxin to your dog.

    The calla lily is an immediate irritant and toxin to your dog.

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    The calla lily (Zantedeschia aethiopica) is not a member of the Lilium family -- it technically is not a true lily. With their spade-shaped, cupped funnel single flowers, they are mildly to moderately toxic to dogs but, unlike other lily species, they do not result in acute kidney failure. Calla lilies contain crystals of calcium oxalate. When your dog bites into the plant, the crystals release and cause immediate mouth pain, as well as additional symptoms.

    Symptoms of Calla Lilly Ingestion

    When your dog bites into a calla lily, the calcium oxalate crystals enter the mouth, resulting in immediate burning and irritation. You may notice your dog pawing at his face to try to stop the pain. Other symptoms include excessive drooling, foaming at the mouth and vomiting. When you look at your dog’s mouth, you may see moderate to severe swelling in the oral cavity. Swelling may also occur in the airway, resulting in difficulty breathing and swallowing.

    Lily Toxicity

    If your dog ingests a true lily, such as the Easter Lily, the symptoms are much more severe. They include vomiting, loss of appetite, lethargy, kidney failure and possibly death.

    Photo Credits

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    About the Author

    Victoria Lee Blackstone is a horticulturist who propagates heirloom and native plants for her nursery. She has authored research-based scientific/technical papers, plant care sheets and magazine and newspaper articles. Blackstone studied botany and microbiology at Clemson University and is a former University of Georgia Extension Master Gardener Coordinator.

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