Dear Daisy Dog: My sister gave me a gorgeous houseplant called a sago palm. I have a 9-month-old dog who sometimes chews on outdoor plants. Might he have a problem if he chews on the sago palm?
Daisy Responds: Yes, so I urge you to give the plant to a friend who has no pets or children. Though I am smart enough not to chew anything but my dog toys and kibble, my home is free of sago palms and other toxic plants, as yours should be.
A sago palm, also called a cycad palm, resembles a pineapple with green spiked fronds growing from the top. These palms are popular indoor houseplants and, in warm climates, often are used as landscape plants.
All parts of the sago palm are poisonous to dogs, cats and humans. The seeds are so toxic that ingestion of a single seed has caused death in dogs. We dogs can even be poisoned if we chew but don’t swallow plant material.
Signs of toxicity include vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite and energy. Sago palm toxins damage the liver, stomach, intestines and nervous system, often causing death, so immediate veterinary treatment is crucial.