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Autumn Crocus

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Poisonous to: Cats, Dogs

Level of toxicity: Generally mild to severe

Common signs to watch for:

  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Inappetance
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Black-tarry stool
  • Organ damage
  • Respiratory failure
  • Seizures
  • Death

There are two types of Crocus plants: one that blooms in the spring (Crocus species) and the other in the autumn (Colchicum autumnale). Depending on geographic location, the spring plants are often more commonly found. Spring crocus plants are part of the Iridaceae family. These ingestions can cause general gastrointestinal upset including drooling, vomiting and diarrhea. These should not be mistaken for Autumn Crocus, part of the Liliaceae family, which contains a toxic alkaloid called colchicine. All parts of the Autumn Crocus are poisonous. The Autumn Crocus, also known as Meadow Saffron or Naked Lady, is highly toxic and can cause severe gastrointestinal signs (e.g., drooling, vomiting, gastrointestinal bleeding, bloody diarrhea, etc.), liver and kidney damage, respiratory failure, central nervous system signs (e.g., seizures), and even death. Signs may be seen immediately but can also be delayed for days.

If you are not sure which Crocus plant your dog or cat ingested, seek veterinary attention immediately or contact Pet Poison Helpline for treatment recommendations. Bring the plant/flower in also for appropriate identification if possible.

Poison type: Plants

Alternate names: Colchium, spring crocus, crocus