Sago Palm: Beautiful But Deadly to Your Pets

While the Sago Palm is a beautiful, low-maintenance, heat tolerant addition to your yard, it is severely toxic to pets and humans.  Sago Palms contain cycasin, which is the primary toxic agent resulting in severe liver failure, and can quickly take the life of your beloved pet.  Unfortunately, these plants are not usually sold with warning labels so buyers often don’t know that they can be deadly if ingested.  There have even been reports of people using the seed pods as fetch toys for their dogs! 

Sadly, many dogs, cats, horses, and a multitude of other animals find Sago Palms delicious!  In fact, some veterinarians think that dogs are particularly drawn to these deadly treats.  All parts of the Sago Palm are considered poisonous, but the seeds are the most toxic and easy to ingest. 

If ingested, Sago Palms can cause the following effects within 15 minutes to several hours:

  • Lethargy
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Unusual accumulation of fluid in the abdomen
  • Loss of appetite
  • Jaundice
  • Black (bloody) stools
  • Seizures
  • Weakness
  • Tremors
  • Severe liver failure
  • Death

**If you suspect your pet has ingested, or even licked or chewed on any portion of a Sago Palm, call your veterinarian or the Pet Poison Hotline at 1-800-213-6680 immediately.  Aggressive treatment will be required to save your pet’s life, if it can be saved.

If you have a Sago Palm in your yard, make sure your pet cannot access the plant, or remove it completely.  Call us to suggest a better plant, or to design and install an improved landscape centered around your family and lifestyle.