alita the maine coon near plants

Checklist: What to Do If Your Maine Coon Eats A Poisonous Plant

Maine Coons are a very curious breed of cat. Like most cat’s they can and will chew on anything. 

Many households have plants that could be poisonous and outdoors has a variety of plants that, if ingested, might make the average Maine Coon very ill.

They especially love greenery, but these plants may contain toxic substances that are harmful to your pet. 

Observe the following steps if you believe your Maine Coon has eaten a poisonous plant in order to avoid health issues.

Maine Coons who have consumed a poisonous plant need to be treated quickly. Maine Coons are quite robust health wise but depending upon the severity and the quantity of the toxin ingested, quick action may be needed. In general, locate and identify the plant, get an idea of the quantity of the plant, and keep the Maine Coon well fed and hydrated. 

The article talks about what you need to do if your Maine Coon eats a plant which can harm the cat’s health. The guide also helps prevent messes or problems altogether by mentioning some plants that are unsafe for your Maine Coon to eat at all.

a maine coon standing proud outside

The Checklist

A Maine Coon might not be aware that it is consuming something poisonous. Sometimes the taste of a plant or berry isn’t immediately obvious to the cat.

1. Realize Your Maine Coon is Sick

The important point to remember is that when a Maine Coon consumes a poisonous plant, it may be a few hours before symptoms appear.

A sudden change of appetite or a loss of interest in food could mean they are feeling unwell.

As a Maine Coon owner, it’s important to spend enough time with your pet to know their normal behaviors. If they seem different from what you normally see, this is usually a sign that something is wrong and requires attention.

You should also remove any of the plant items from being stuck in the fur to prevent further ingestion.

Additionally remove them to a room where they will receive peace and prevent further consumption of the plant.

2. Correctly Identify What Your Maine Coon Has Consumed

If you saw the Maine Coon consume the plant then that’s a good first step, as you can now identify the plant.

If you didn’t witness the Maine Coon eating the plant then you need to hunt around. Are any household plants looking chewed or where they normally are outside, are there any telltale signs of chewed leaves.

The other remaining possibility is that the Maine Coon has ingested an artificial item or some household chemicals. If either of these cases is likely, then a visit to the vet is a must.

You should make sure that your Maine Coon is in an environment with plenty of fresh, cool water to drink and clean up droppings from poison ingestion.

a maine coon hiding in the grass

3. Determine How Much Of The Poisonous Plant Has Been Consumed

There are 2 factors to poisonings in your Maine Coon. Firstly is the severity of the poison, followed by the quantity eaten.

The severity of poison can be mild, moderate or severe and the quantity eaten is often based on weight (as opposed to age). Mild poisonings may cause gastrointestinal upset with vomiting and diarrhea which usually resolves within 12 hours. Moderate to high poisoning will result in more symptoms such as extreme lethargy and convulsions.

With mild symptoms, and the Maine Coon looking in general good health, then keeping them well fed and hydrated will help.

With mild symptoms, and the Maine Coon looking in general good health, then keeping them well fed and hydrated will help.

If a very poisonous plant has been consumed, or a great quantity then more action may be needed.

If there is any change in the Maine Coon’s behavior, if they are not eating or drinking then a veterinarian should be contacted for immediate guidance.

4. Keep Your Maine Coon Well Fed And Hydrated

This is good advice anyway, but if they are more inactive than usual as they suffer through the poisoning, then making your Maine Coon consume a creamy treat and drink plenty of water is a good idea.

Creamy food is easily digestible and designed as a treat so should be easily taken by a Maine Coon. It also contains water, thus partially hydrating them.

Keeping your Maine Coon hydrated helps to flush the toxins out of their system.

You may not see any easily visible signs that they are getting better buy taking food is certainly a good step in the right direction. It helps keep their strength, which also helps in fighting the toxin.

5. If The Situation Doesn’t Improve Then Take Them To A Vet

Hopefully, you will have a good idea of what they may have consumed. A Maine Coon purrs like most cats if it’s in pain, so you may want to skip to this step if they are purring.

This is the ultimate step. In some cases where poison has been consumed and there’s a lot of vomiting or diarrhea, you will need to seek emergency veterinary care for them as they are likely suffering from toxic poisoning.

Don’t wait more than a few hours before If they won’t drink any water, look in pain, or you believe the poisoning is worsening.

A vet, as a certified professional, will be able to better diagnose the poisoning, and get your Maine Coon back to full strength again.

Vets have the necessary equipment, and medicine available to treat the problem far more effectively.

If the plant your Maine Coon has ingested is described as highly poisonous, then it might be better to go straight to this step.

Poisonous Plants To Maine Coons

It can be difficult to know which plants are dangerous for Maine Coons.

Even though there are many safe plants, it is difficult to identify the ones that will harm them.

Many poisonous plants are irritants, causing painful inflammation of sensitive tissues like the mouth or skin. They can also cause more serious damage or alter the function of a cat’s organ, such as the kidney and heart.

According to petmd The list of most harmful plants for cats is;

  • Amaryllis (Amaryllis spp.)
  • Autumn Crocus (Colchicum autumnale)
  • Azaleas and Rhododendrons (Rhododendron spp.)
  • Castor Bean (Ricinus communis)
  • Chrysanthemum, Daisy, Mum (Chrysanthemum spp.)
  • Cyclamen (Cyclamen spp.)
  • Daffodils, Narcissus (Narcissus spp.)
  • Dieffenbachia (Dieffenbachia spp.)
  • English Ivy (Hedera helix)
  • Hyacinth (Hyacintus orientalis)
  • Kalanchoe (Kalanchoe spp.)
  • Lily (Lilium sp.)
  • Lily of the Valley (Convallaria majalis)
  • Marijuana (Cannabis sativa)
  • Oleander (Nerium oleander)
  • Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum sp.)
  • Pothos, Devil’s Ivy (Epipremnum aureum)
  • Sago Palm (Cycas revoluta)
  • Spanish Thyme (Coleus ampoinicus)
  • Tulip (Tulipa spp.)
  • Yew (Taxus spp.)

As a general rule, if a plant is described as poisonous, then don’t assume it’s just the leaves. Assume the whole plant is poisonous.

Many houseplants are actually quite dangerous for a Maine Coon to consume. Maine Coons will roam freely around the house, even if you aren’t there so consider getting rid of anything that might be considered poisonous.

For a while, there was the craze of people making their own aloe vera remedy. It came from the aloe houseplant, which was grown organically. Aloe vera contains mild toxins for Maine Coons and can produce diarrhea and vomiting if ingested.

Ivy is another common houseplant, often used for decoration but has moderate toxicity to cats. It can produce mouth and stomach irritation, excessive drooling, foaming at the mouth, swelling of the mouth, tongue and lips, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Devils ivy is common for gardeners, but isn’t great for your Maine Coon.

Chrysanthemums are common in yards and houses. They have flower heads that when eaten by your Maine Coon can cause vomiting, diarrhoea and lack of appetite.

Ingestion of common houseplants can be hazardous to your cat’s health. The below is a list of specific plants which should not be kept in the home:

  • Aloe
  • Azalea
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Hyacinths
  • Lily
  • Marijuana
  • Mistletoe
  • Rhododendron
  • Sago Palm
  • Tulip

Even a few seeds of sago palm can cause vomiting, seizures, and liver failure


It’s important not to panic if you suspect a plant poisoning.

Maine Coons are highly versatile when it comes to dealing with pesticides and toxins. 

Yes, they will eat just about any plant for food, but they also need to consume a considerable amount of most dangerous plants for there to be any real effect on their systems.

However, that doesn’t mean you should make it easy for them. It’s still good advice to keep poisonous plants out of the household, and check where locally our Maine Coon may come into contact with them.

Maine Coons, while on the whole very resilient to harm that house and garden plants can cause, are still in danger of being hurt by these poisons. 

Take care when you see them sick, as they cannot do so themselves. 

Unlike rats, and rabbits a Maine Coon is capable of vomiting. Vomiting is nature’s way of ejecting the ingested poisons. It can be a good sign, but remember to keep your Maine Coon well fed and hydrated if you suspect a poisoning.

The best advice is prevention rather than cure. Become vigilant to what your Maine Coon may consume, albeit unknowingly, and remove plants if they can produce harm if ingested.

About the Author


My name is Ann and I have been looking after and breeding cats since 2013. I am currently the proud ownder of Alita, a female Maine Coon to whom I've dedicated this site. She has had 2 litters and is around 3 years old. We share adventures and stories together.

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