When Your Dog Eats Poinsettia Leaves: What to Do

The holiday season offers us numerous pleasures, but one of the most satisfying ones is decorating the house. However, decorations can become a problem when we live with animals. Dogs enjoy playing with toys, therefore it can be simple for them to mistakenly identify baubles and ornaments for toys. Tinsel and streamers can also be extremely alluring for them to take down. The holidays don’t simply pose issues with our festive decor, though. A seasonal plant that is especially well-liked during the holiday season is the poinsettia. Dogs are also hazardous for it.

Dogs and Poinsettia

Image Credit:Anny Maria

When my dog eats a poinsettia leaf, what happens? That is what AnimalWised explains. To conduct our job, we consider how poinsettias and dogs interact.

What kind of plant is a poinsettia?

Due to its crimson foliage and contrast with its green stalk, the poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima) is a plant that is frequently linked to Christmas. Although it is frequently used as a Christmas potted plant, it is actually a tiny tree that may reach heights of over 13 feet.

The poinsettia plant is indigenous to Central America, and it was here that Christian religious communities originally connected it to the holiday season. These plants are grown in their millions each year, but not just for the holiday season. They are perennial plants, so they may be maintained all year long, despite the fact that many people only retain and care for them during the holidays.

But in the winter, the poinsettia’s leaves only show up for a short time. They are related to the holidays because of this as well. They do bloom for a longer period of time, however most of the bloom is made up of bracts. The leaves only show up for a brief period of time.

Maybe dogs and other animals are drawn to them because of their color and want to devour them. It is something that not only harms our decorative accents but could also endanger our pet animals.

Do dogs get poisoned by poinsettia leaves?

There is a lot of misunderstanding regarding the poinsettia due to its history. In the USA, an urban legend from 1919 falsely stated that a young kid died after eating poinsettia leaves. Due to this misinformation, it is now widely believed that poinsettia plants are poisonous to young children and animals.

Poinsettia leaf ingestion is extremely unlikely to be fatal to dogs. According to the ASPCA, the toxicity levels are “generally over-rated”[1]. Dogs, however, cannot consume the plant. They are not fatal, but they can still harm your health, so you should avoid them. An unfavorable reaction is even less likely if the dog simply ate one or fewer poinsettia leaves.

The poinsettia leaves can hurt our dog in two different ways. When chewing poinsettia leaves, ingesting them can cause the sap to ooze into their mouth. This could make you feel sick to your stomach or esophagus in addition to irritating your mouth and gums.

If the dog gets into touch with their eyes, it may have an impact on their skin. The dog might smell the leaves out of curiosity and end up with sap on their skin. Although it is doubtful that there would be a serious reaction and the symptoms should be modest, we still need to exercise caution. Even though all that happens is the eyes get bloodshot, it is better to be cautious than sorry.

Dogs and Poinsettia 2

Image Credit:coconic cambridge

What signs would indicate a dog is toxic to poinsettias?

Although not lethal, it’s possible that dogs will react negatively. The amount consumed or the amount of sap that has come into touch with the dog’s skin will determine this. Additionally, the symptoms could be worse if the sap comes into contact with delicate bodily parts.

They consist of:






Skin sensitivity


Blisters (when a large amount is consumed)


How to handle a dog that has eaten poinsettia leaves

Whether you have reason to believe or are certain that your dog ate poinsettia leaves, we must use caution. The dog may become intoxicated, but an allergic reaction may make things worse. They both frighten me, yet they have distinct effects on the dog. The dog may have anaphylactic shock in the event of a severe allergic reaction.

The first thing you must do is maintain your composure. If you become anxious, it won’t stop you from helping them and might even make them anxious as well. Check to see if the poinsettia is the real culprit for the issue. It is unlikely unless they are reacting violently. When fallen plant materials like leaves

If you are certain that the dog ate poinsettia leaves, take the following actions:

When it’s safe to do so, let the dog throw up. When it’s safe to do so, we should let them throw up the substance since ingesting it is what’s causing their symptoms. Only in an emergency should you force them to vomit because doing so could damage them worse. If you take them to a veterinarian, the doctor might use a clinical induction of vomiting.

You should thoroughly rinse the affected area with fresh water if your dog’s skin or eyes have come in contact with poinsettia plant sap. 

Dogs and Poinsettia 3

Image Credit:Shirlene Cooper

Never let your dog self-medicate and always give them water to drink to prevent dehydration. The best medications can only be chosen by a qualified veterinary specialist.

The veterinarian must assess the kidney function of the dog before beginning medication to rule out any concerns. You must provide the veterinarian with information about your pet’s medical history and the events leading up to the poisoning. The prognosis is better if you act quickly.

This essay serves only as information. AnimalWised lacks the legal right to diagnose a condition or recommend a course of therapy for animals. We encourage you to take your pet to the vet if they experience any pain or illness.