South Yorkshire cat owner warns of plant poisoning after cat collapsed at Christmas

Tara Christmas with her cat Elsa.

Tara Christmas with her cat Elsa.

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A South Yorkshire cat owner called Tara Christmas has issued a warning for the festive season after her kitten developed poisoning from her poinsettia houseplant.

Six-month-old Elsa kept nibbling leaves from the decorative plant until she got sick and collapsed on Christmas Day last year.

Tara, 27, from Rotherham, had no idea poinsettias were poisonous to pets. She said: "I was given the plant as a gift and had put it on the table, but I noticed the leaves were being nibbled.

"I kept moving it but Elsa would always find a way to reach it. I had no idea that it was poisonous though, so when Elsa started being sick and collapsing I didn't know what was causing it."

She contacted the PDSA charity and tests at its Sheffield Pet Hospital revealed the cause of the kitten's poisoning. She was put on a drip before recovering.

"The poinsettia went straight in the bin, of course, and I check very carefully before bringing any flowers or plants into the house now," said Tara.

Senior Vet at Sheffield PDSA, Robert Haselgrove, said: "When I came in on Boxing Day morning and saw the name on our in-patient lists - Elsa Christmas - I thought someone was playing a joke at first.

"But thankfully she'd been brought to us in time and after receiving treatment Elsa was able to go home."

The PDSA charity is running a Christmas appeal and is asking supporters to text STAR to 70025 to give a one-off donation of £5* - with the asterisk indicating the texter will also be charged one standard rate message.

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