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Cat Owners Should Avoid Displaying Easter Lilies

Medioimages/Photodisc/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- It’s that time of year when people adorn their homes with the flowers of the holiday season, such as Easter lilies.

But while these flowers might look great on your coffee table, they can be murder on your cats -– literally.

Health officials at the Federal Drug Administration warn cat owners to keep Easter lilies -- and in fact, all flowers in the lily family -- out of the reach of cats because the animals can become deathly ill if they happen to chew on the petals or leaves.

FDA veterinarian Melanie McLean says toxins in lilies cause kidney failure in cats, which may start as vomiting, followed by frequent urination and then failure to urinate. Death can result within four-to-seven days after ingesting the toxins.

At the first sign of illness, cat owners should bring their pet to the vet, who will treat it with intravenous liquids to keep the kidneys functioning.

While dogs aren’t as susceptible to getting sick from Easter lilies, a Lily of the Valley is dangerous as well to canines. Other plants pets should stay away from are aloe vera, Daphne, Kalanchoe, foxglove and yew bushes.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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