With #Christmas time comes #Mistletoe and American Holly. There are a few varieties like Japanese, Chinese and English holly but all of them contain toxic saponins. This holly is popular in eastern and south-central United States.
Holly is NOT fatal because the spiky leaves keep dogs from swallowing large quantities, but the spikes themselves can cause damage to the mouth and throat such as mouth pain and swelling. The toxic compounds inside the Holly is: Caffeic acid, caffeine, caffeoyl derivatives, chlorogenic acid, feruloylquinic acid, lilicine, ilexanthin, kaempferol, quercetin, quinic acid, rutin, tannins, theobromine.
Symptoms of ingestion of Holly are: Diarrhea, vomiting, head shaking, loss of appetite, pawing at mouth, spots of blood in mouth, and excessive drooling.
Keep this plant along with Mistletoe away from your pets this Christmas, and if you see your animal ingesting this plant call your vet, or the ASPCA pet poison helpline.