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Skunk Cabbage


Poisonous to: Cats, Dogs, Horses, Cows

Common signs to watch for:

  • Drooling
  • Inappetance
  • Pawing at the mouth
  • Vomiting
  • Swelling of the airway

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Skunk cabbage, which looks similar to rhubarb, contains insoluble calcium oxalate crystalls. Chewing or biting into these plant releases the crystals which penetrate tissue resulting in injury. When dogs or cats ingest insoluble calcium oxalate-containing plants, clinical signs may be seen immediately and include pawing at face (secondary to oral pain), drooling, foaming, and vomiting. Moderate to severe swelling of the lips, tongue, oral cavity, and upper airway may also be seen, making it difficult to breathe or swallow. Insoluble calcium oxalate-containing plants have a different mechanism of toxicity than soluble calcium oxalate-containing plants (e.g., star fruit, rhubarb, shamrock).

Poison type: Plants

Alternate names: Symplocarpus foetidus, insoluble calcium oxalate crystals