Peace Lily Toxic to Cats: A Hidden Danger in Your Home

The common name of Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum spp. ) is the houseplant that can be found in many homes because of its beautiful white bracts and ornate green leaves. However, as you can see in the picture, there is a hidden threat to our beloved cats on the surface of which the tool looks very innocent and even helpful. Cats are also at risk since the plant is toxic and if eaten can cause several health issues. This article looks at the characteristics of these toxicity signs to look out for, treatment procedures, and ways to avoid exposing cats to these fashionable plants to prevent further death of these beautiful animals.

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Understanding Peace Lily Toxicity

Despite being beautiful plants, members of the peace lilies family possess insoluble calcium oxalate crystals, which affect their toxicity level. These needle-like crystals are viewable in all plant tissues, the leaves stems, and flowers of the plant. It has been stated that when the cat chews or bites into this plant the crystals are let go and this causes extreme irritation and harm to the mouth, throat as well as intestines.

In this case, the mode of damage is mechanical irritation. The crystals are quite sharp which makes penetration of the finer tissues in the mouth of a cat very painful to endure. Although Peace lilies are not as toxic as those of lilies from the Lilium or Hemerocallis genera, which may result in acute kidney failure amongst other effects, they are still poisonous plants whose danger should never be overlooked.

Symptoms of Peace Lily Poisoning in Cats

Signs that indicate that your cat has ingested a peace lily plant involve symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and loss of appetite. Symptoms displayed by cats that have consumed parts of this plant include; As mentioned earlier, Peace lily toxicity in cats can cause minor or severe symptoms depending on the amount consumed.

Oral Irritation:

It can manifest in some basic symptoms such as oral irritation, which is one of the first and most obvious signs. The cats suffering from the condition may salivate excessively, obsessively groom their mouth area, and avoid eating and drinking due to discomfort.


Once it gets ingested or taken internally, the body reacts by trying to rid itself of the substance through vomiting. This can, in turn, exacerbate the dehydration levels and make the cat even more wimpy than it already is.

Difficulty Swallowing:

The size and sharpness of calcium oxalate crystals may lead to painful and hard swallowing, in which the cat may gag or choke.

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Loss of Appetite:

The nausea and burning sensation that occur when ingested can cause the patient to lose his/her appetite be weak, and even lose weight in extreme cases.


Lips may swell accompanied by the tongue and oral cavity, increasing difficulty in swallowing food and liquids.

Breathing Difficulties:

In worse cases, the relations may become oedematous and hyper-irritated, making it impossible to breathe via the upper respiratory tract. This is a pregnancy complication and the situation demands that the female dog be rushed to the vet.

Diagnosing Peace Lily Poisoning

A diagnosis of Peace lily poisoning often requires a combination of clinical history, physical examination, and the presence of symptoms. Having asked about any history of exposure to plants, veterinary surgeons will then assess the condition of the mouth and lips for signs of inflammation or swelling. Sometimes to that effect, further investigations like blood tests, x-rays, and other imaging might be run to ensure that other causes of the symptoms are not an issue.

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Treatment of Peace Lily Poisoning

Peace lily poisoning is mainly symptomatic; thus, treatment consists of addressing the symptoms associated with ingestion of this plant. In any situation involving an animal, professional help is often needed when the animal is alive, and the chances of success are significantly higher. Treatment options may include:


Sometimes if the ingestion is recent the vet may administer a medication that will cause vomiting to remove as much of the plant material from the stomach as possible. This is then succeeded by activated charcoal administration for managing toxins.

Pain Management:

Aim for Relief of pain since there will always be pain resulting from the calcium oxalate crystals. This may refer to the administration of pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs.

Fluid Therapy:

Intravenous fluids are frequently used to correct the body fluids deficit and provide other critical functions within the body. This also helps in cleaning the internal system of any residual toxins and keeping the body hydrated.

Gastroprotective Agents:

Proton pump inhibitors and other drugs that heal ulcers and prevent further irritation may be prescribed to optimize the treatment outcome.

Monitoring and Support:

Close follow-up and management are essential for long-course treatment and in cases where respiratory involvement is a problem. Supplemental oxygen and other treatments sometimes may be required.


Learn the Effects and Risks of Peace Lilies on Cats:

Nonetheless, it is much safer to avoid ingestion of Peace lily in the first instance to enhance the safety of cats.

Avoid Keeping Peace Lilies:

The best type of prevention is to not expose cats to Peace lilies at all by not having the plants in homes where cats live. Choose plant varieties that are safe for the animal and do not harm them.

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If you do have Peace lilies, ensure they are placed out of reach by cats by putting them in areas that the cats cannot access. The use of hanging planters or shelves that are high enough for the cat to avoid could help to keep curious cats at bay but this is not very effective.

Educate and Inform:

Educate all members of the household on the dangers posed by these plants and ensure they keep the Peace lilies out of the reach of pets.


It is advisable to replace Peace lilies with plants that the cat cannot access or are toxic to the pet animal. The safe alternatives contain spider plants, Boston ferns, and bamboo palms.

Cat Grass:

So, it would be beneficial to satisfy the natural curiosity of the cats and offer them cat grass or any other safe plants for them to chew, to avoid their interest shifting to the toxic plants.

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Regular Veterinary Visits:

It is always recommended to take your cat to the vet for a routine check-up that may help to identify any health complications that may be affecting it.


In as much as Peace lilies are good-looking and one can find them as ornamental indoor plants; then one cannot ignore the fact that they are toxic to cats. Knowledge of the signs of Peace lily toxicity, urgent visits to the veterinarian, and precautions can save our cats from the dangers of the plant. As much as it is practically impressive to have indoor plants around the house, it is also essential to ensure that the plants are safe for cats and other pets at home. As seen above, the Peace lily is among those plants that are toxic to pets; therefore, pet owners must remain attentive and informed as the first line of defense against such dangers.