Flowers Care Flowers Facts

Are tulips safe for cats?

When it comes to human babies, we take all precautions to safeguard our homes. And we should be doing the same with our fur babies as well. While cat owners do their best to hide all the little dangers like cleaning supplies and rubber bands, what one may not realise is, tulips lying all around the house are perilous to our feline friend.

This article is all about helping you with an in-depth study to find out are tulips safe for cats?

About Tulips

Tulips, part of the Liliaceae family, are seasonal flowering plants appreciated for their lively flowers, which emerge from the beginning of spring until the end of the season. Appeared in the Netherlands in 1593, originated in central Asia this ornamental bulb plant enjoys immense adulation.


Causes of Tulip Poisoning in Cats

Like daffodils, the bulbs of tulips are toxic to cats. Tulip plants also contain a group of toxins ‘tulipalin’ which can be further split into tulipalin A and tulipalin B. This substance is an irritant composed for no other reason than to protect the plants from herbivores, that may come to eat the plant as food. Swollen in large quantities, tulipalin can be quite phytotoxic (damage to the liver). However, most cases of tulip poisoning cause intense irritation to the tissues that it comes into contact with it. This results in excessive drooling salivation, vomiting, and diarrhea, appetite loss. The allergenic properties of tulipalin also result in the ‘zonked’ state that many cats will enter into.


The symptoms of tulip poisoning manifest quickly and are noticeable. Cat owners should note as much information as they can regarding the progression of the symptoms, as this information can be very helpful when the veteran is making a diagnosis.

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea 
  • Salivation
  • Loss of coordination 
  • Lethargy 
  • Weakness
  • central nervous system depression
  • rapid heart rate
  • laboured breathing
  • excessive drooling

With any little first sign of any of these symptoms take your kitties for veterinary care to avoid serious consequences.

Diagnosis of Tulip Poisoning in Cats

When the cat is brought to the appointment, the vet performs a physical examination. This allows them to observe the symptoms. They ask some questions regarding the cat’s medical history, lifestyle even events surrounding the poisoning The vet might also choose to take a blood sample from the cat for laboratory testing, as to precisely identify the responsible toxins.

Treatment of Tulip Poisoning in Cats

The most potent method for treating poisoning is fluid therapy. This procedure puts liquids precisely into the kitty’s body using an intravenous drip, replacing all the drained water and rehydrating them. It also helps in urination, throwing away all the tulip chemicals out of the body. The vet may also choose to use some activated charcoal in order to ingest any tulipalin that could be ingrained in the stomach.

The best part is your fur babies will recover within weeks with proper medications.  Make sure your cat never gets around any tulip flower as it may cause serious consequences.

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