Plants and Christmas trees that might be harmful for dogs including mistletoe, ivy, poinsettias, lilies and holly
With Christmas fast approaching many of us our now decorating our homes with plants and fresh greenery.
However while bringing the outside in can spruce up our houses, some of the most popular festive trees and plants can also risk being harmful to our pets.
From poisonous berries to skin irritating sap, we've rounded up nine plants and trees you'd be advised to keep away from your dog over the festive season.
And remember - if you're concerned about your pooch's health or you suspect they've eaten something they shouldn't have be sure to contact your vet for advice.
While holly berries can be a crucial food source for birds in the winter they can prove toxic for both humans and other animals such as dogs and cats. If either the red berries or spiked edges from a holly plant are eaten, problems can range from irritation in the mouth through to significant vomiting and diarrhoea depending on the quantity consumed.
2. Christmas trees
If your dog opted to chew on the branches of your Christmas tree most experts are agreed that there is a relatively low toxicity risk. However the pine needles may cause you a few other problems. While none of the sap or pine is poisonous to animals the sap might cause an upset tummy or some mouth irritation if they decided to take a nibble while pine needles can get stuck in paws if your dog was to spend a lot of time under or around the tree.
Retailer Pets at Home suggests households with a family pet that are keen on having a real tree choose something with a low-needle drop such as the Nordman Fir.
Though varied in types, the berries from mistletoe contain chemicals which can be harmful to both dogs and cats, but charity Blue Cross says UK owners can be less concerned as it is the American species of the plant rather than European varieties that are 'far more dangerous'. Eating European mistletoe berries, however, may still cause an upset stomach particularly if your pooch decided to eat a significant number.
4. Poinsettia plants
With their bright red and green festive foliage, poinsettia plants are a familiar addition to the Christmas decorations or table for many people.
Poinsettia, says the UK's Kennel Club does have a reputation for being highly toxic but stories of how poisonous it is are 'often exaggerated' says the organisation. But while the effects of coming into contact with the plant are most likely to be mild - ranging from excessive dribble to upset stomachs - it remains best to always keep these Christmas plants out of the reach of paws.
Ivy vines may cause an upset tummy, warns the Kennel Club, if a dog was to eat some. But it isn't just pooches mistakenly taking a nibble that can cause a problem - if there were to be prolonged contact with your pet's skin you may notice some skin irritation, ranging from mild to severe depending on how much of it they have come into contact with and for how long.
While the the whole amaryllis plant can contain toxic substances, higher quantities are contained in the bulb say pet insurance experts at money.co.uk, so owners with dogs who like to dig are warned to be extra careful.
If consumed the reaction may include severe stomach upsets and pain, loss of appetite and tiredness to its advisable to be cautious and seek medical help if you're concerned.
A lily can be dangerous for both dogs and cats if any part of it is eaten with advice from the Dogs Trust warning owners that, as with many things, the more eaten the more concerning it would be.
The first signs of spring are often associated with the appearance of snowdrops but these small white flowers can contain toxins in their stems and leaves. But it is the bulb that contains the highest and most concentrated amount of harmful substance - so like amaryllis - pets who like to dig should be watched far more closely.
All parts of a yew plant warn animal insurance experts at money.co.uk are poisonous including the leaves and the berries. If they were to be ingested they might cause sickness, weakness, breathing difficulties and in more serious cases, life threatening change in heart rate and blood pressure. If you think your dog may have come into contact with yew, do seek some professional medical advice.