Additional Common Names: Alligator Pear
Scientific Name: Persea americana
Toxicity: Toxic to Horses
Toxic Principles: Toxic to horses, cattle, goats, and birds. Avocado leaves, fruit, seeds and bark may contain a toxic principle known as persin. The Guatemalan variety, a common one found in stores, appears to be the most problematic. Other varieties of avocado can have different degrees of toxic potential.
Clinical Signs: Birds, rabbits, and some large animals are especially sensitive to avocados, as they can have respiratory distress, congestion, fluid accumulation around the heart, and even death from consuming avocado. While avocado is toxic to some animals, in dogs and cats, we do not expect to see serious signs of illness. In some dogs and cats, mild stomach upset may occur if the animal eats a significant amount of avocado flesh or peel. Ingestion of the pit can lead to obstruction in the gastrointestinal tract, which is a serious situation requiring urgent veterinary care. Avocado is sometimes included in pet foods for nutritional benefit. We would generally not expect avocado meal or oil present in commercial pet foods to pose a hazard to dogs and cats.
If your pet ingested this plant, contact your local veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435.*
* A $65 consultation fee may apply.Browse Toxic Plant Gallery List »