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Are cats allergic to Cherries or is it toxic to them?

Byzantine-style illustration of cherries with bright red color and green leaves

Cherry trees are popular ornamental plants known for their beautiful spring blossoms. However, while the fruit of the cherry tree may be a sweet treat for humans, cherry plants can be toxic to cats. All parts of the cherry plant, including the stems, leaves, seeds and blossoms contain cyanide compounds that are poisonous to felines.

Cherry trees are commonly found in gardens, parks and landscaping in many parts of the world.

Toxicity level

High

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Additional image of the plant

Symptoms your cat may have

If a cat ingests any part of a cherry tree or plant, they may begin to show symptoms of cyanide poisoning. Signs a cat has eaten something from a cherry tree and is experiencing toxicity include:

  • Bright red gums and tongue
  • Difficulty breathing or panting
  • Dilated pupils
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Weakness or lethargy
  • Tremors or seizures
  • Collapse

Potential diagnosis your Vet may give

If you suspect your cat has ingested any part of a cherry tree, seek immediate veterinary care. Your vet will likely follow these diagnostic steps:

  1. Perform a physical exam and take a history
  2. Run bloodwork to check for signs of cyanide in the blood
  3. Administer an antidote to cyanide poisoning
  4. Provide supportive care with IV fluids and oxygen therapy
  5. Monitor heart rate and breathing
An illustrative banner depicting an anthropomorphic cat in a vet's office, alongside a call-to-action message that reads: 'If you suspect your pet may have ingested a potentially toxic substance,' accompanied by a prominent button stating 'Find A Vet Near Me!
An illustrative banner depicting an anthropomorphic cat in a vet's office, alongside a call-to-action message that reads: 'If you suspect your pet may have ingested a potentially toxic substance,' accompanied by a prominent button stating 'Find A Vet Near Me!

FAQ

Q: Are cats allergic to Cherries?

A: While it is uncommon, some cats can be allergic to Cherries. Symptoms of an allergic reaction may include itching, sneezing, and skin irritation.

Q: Are Cherries toxic to cats?

A: Yes, Cherries are toxic to cats. The stems, leaves, and pits contain cyanogenic glycosides, which can release cyanide when chewed and ingested, leading to severe symptoms.

Q: What are the symptoms of Cherry poisoning in cats?

A: Symptoms of Cherry poisoning in cats include vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, red gums, and dilated pupils. Immediate veterinary care is crucial if ingestion is suspected.

Q: How can I prevent my cat from coming into contact with Cherries?

A: To prevent contact, ensure that Cherries are not present in your home or garden. Keep your cat indoors or monitor outdoor activities closely to avoid exposure to Cherry trees or fruits.

Q: What should I do if my cat ingests Cherries?

A: If your cat ingests Cherries, contact your veterinarian immediately. Do not induce vomiting unless instructed by a veterinary professional. Immediate medical attention is necessary.

Q: Are Cherry trees commonly found in gardens?

A: Yes, Cherry trees are commonly found in gardens and orchards. It is important to ensure this plant is kept out of reach of cats to prevent accidental ingestion.

History of Cherries

Cherry trees are believed to be native to regions around the Caspian Sea and have been cultivated for thousands of years. Both sweet and sour cherry varieties spread throughout Europe and Asia, and were brought to North America by early settlers in the 1600s.

In 1912, Japan gifted over 3000 cherry trees to the United States as a symbol of friendship. These trees were planted around the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C. and have become an iconic spring landmark. Each year, the National Cherry Blossom Festival celebrates the beauty of the blossoms and the relationship between the two countries.

Further reading and sources

Please note: The information shared in this post is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as veterinary medical advice.

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