Are Roses Toxic For Dogs (6)
Pet Health Questions and Answers

Are Roses Toxic For Dogs?

A lot of common garden plants and flowers can be toxic to animals. Several of these can poison their body and lead to fatal diseases.

Roses are beautiful, traditional flowers that a lot of garden enthusiasts have within their gardens. Despite their appeal, dog owners need to take care of choosing which flowers to plant. 

Dogs are very prone to roaming through their gardens and consuming a variety of substances, dogs will even eat the dirt or potting soil sometime. One important step you should take is to ensure that the flowers within your yard are non-toxic and safe for them to be around.

If you love roses and are wondering if they are dangerous for your dog, here’s the good news. Roses will not be poisonous to your dog, but you should still deter your dog from chewing up plants. Roses can have sharp thorns that can seriously injure your pet.

We’ll cover more about whether roses are poisonous for dogs in this article. You’ll find out whether miniature roses are toxic for your dog, as well as how to stop your pet from eating your roses.

Table of Contents:

Are Roses Poisonous To Dogs?

Every component of the true rose variety is not poisonous to dogs. It shouldn’t be a huge problem if your dog eats a few leaves or petals. 

However, there are a few exceptions which we’ll cover in the following section. 

On a related note, roses are also not toxic to cats, so they are a good choice for pet owners to plant in their gardens.

A plant may have the term ‘rose’ in its name, but it may not be part of the true rose category. You can differentiate between flowers, as true roses will have the botanical term Rosa in their name. 

You should always take caution when selecting plants for your yard and make sure that they are a true rose species. There are a lot of flowers that look like roses but are poisonous to dogs. 

Are Miniature Roses Dog-Friendly?

Miniature roses are part of the true rose category, so they won’t be poisonous if your pup takes a bite of them.

Restaurants often use miniature rose petals to garnish salads and desserts. They have a pleasant smell that’s used to enhance dishes. Despite their gourmet uses, your pet may experience gastrointestinal issues if they eat miniature rose foliage. 

If your pet starts vomiting or exhibits signs of indigestion, contact your vet immediately for medication advice. 

Are Drift Roses Dog-Friendly?

Drift roses are shrub roses that are also part of the true rose category, so they shouldn’t be poisonous to dogs.

Drift roses do resist disease well, which decreases the chances of your pup being sick after eating them. 

Even though they aren’t toxic, drift roses do have very sharp thorns, so your pup will experience a lot of pain if they tread on them. If you have drift roses in your yard, it’s best to keep your dogs well away from them to avoid thorn damage. 

Are Roses Toxic For Dogs (4)

Do Roses Carry Any Danger?

Roses may not be poisonous to dogs, but they still carry potential hazards. Here are some reasons why you should be cautious about exposing your dog to these classic flowers.

Roses Are Not Healthy

Your dog should generally be fine after eating a few rose petals or leaves. However, consuming any non-edible plant can lead to a distressed stomach, particularly if your dog eats too much. 

Roses have a special smell and a gentle sweet flavor, which is why hungry dogs are often tempted to eat a lot of petals.

Your pup could also accidentally consume them if they are fond of grass, as rose petals often fall onto the ground. Always monitor your dog if they are outside, and deter them from eating rose petals. 

If your pup has consumed a lot of rose matter and is displaying troubling signs, contact your vet immediately. Roses may not be poisonous, but they are hardly considered a healthy addition to a dog’s diet. 

Look Out For Chemicals And Pesticides

It’s always advised to buy rose bush plants from established nurseries. The staff should be able to tell you if the plant has been treated with chemicals, pesticides, and fertilizers which may be toxic to dogs.

For instance, disulfoton is a compound that is frequently used in rose pesticides. Dogs can find the formula attractive, but it is extremely poisonous for them. 

If you have bought a plant and aren’t sure about what it has been treated with, keep your pup away from the plant for a few weeks, at minimum. Rinsing the plant may remove some of the chemicals, but this doesn’t ensure your dog is completely safe. 

Thorns Are Dangerous

If your pup likes to wander through flower beds, the sharp thorns within rose bushes pose a serious hazard.

Thorns can lead to remarkably deep cuts, which puts your dog’s fragile eye area at risk. Thorns can also find their way into paw pads, particularly if any rose cuttings aren’t cleared from the lawn.

If you do want to plant a rose bush in your yard, it’s a good idea to choose a category that doesn’t produce a lot of thorns. Two examples are Kathleen Harrop and the miniature Cinderella Rose. 

Monitoring your dog while they’re playing in the yard also lowers the chances of damage. You can also try sealing off access to your rose bush and giving your pooch other fun activities to engage with. A dog-friendly sand area and interactive treats can all help keep your pup out of trouble.  

Always clear away the rose cuttings after you’ve pruned your rose bush. Cuttings can dry out and lead to stiff thorns, which are even more painful to walk over. 

If you think your pup may have walked over a rose bush stem, make sure that they haven’t hurt their paw. There is a risk of the thorn getting stuck in their paw pad. If it stays there too long, you run the risk of an infection developing.

Signs Of Eye Damage From Thorns

If you notice your dog wandering into your rose bushes, always check to make sure they haven’t damaged their fragile eye area. 

Seemingly small scrapes can lead to corneal ulcers which can be severe if not treated. 

The signs of scratched eyes are:

  • Watery eyes
  • Redness or bloodshot eyes
  • Squinting
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Frequently rubbing eyes
  • Discharge or film around or on the eyes
  • Fast blinking
  • Closing the eyes

If you notice any of these symptoms on your pet, contact your vet immediately for advice. Never try to treat eye injuries yourself before contacting a professional, as this could lead to lasting damage. 

Can You Keep A Vase Of Roses With A Dog In The Home?

As long as your roses are part of the true rose family, they shouldn’t be toxic to dogs, so you can keep a vase of them in your home.

However, as roses can lead to digestion issues, make sure the vase is well out of your dog’s reach. There is a risk of your dog eating any petals which fall to the ground, but the petals aren’t as likely to cause gastrointestinal problems as prickles are. 

Prickles on roses aren’t as likely to fall, but they are more likely to fall within the vase if they do. You can also try to remove the prickles before you place them in your vase. Just make sure you dispose of the roses immediately once they start to die. 


How To Prevent Your Dog From Eating Your Roses

Here are some tips you can take to prevent your dog from eating your roses. These steps also work for cat owners that want to preserve their prized rose bushes.

The best thing you can do is to keep your roses in an area where your dog cannot access them. In the case of indoor roses, keep your vase in a higher place, like a cabinet or a high table, so your pet cannot knock it over.

You can also use dog training steps to tell them what is right and wrong. Several animals, particularly dogs, can pick up the tones within a human voice.

If you firmly scold your dog at a young age when they approach the plant, then praise them with a gentle voice when they listen, the dog is more likely to keep away from your roses later on. 

In the case of outdoor roses, you can prevent your dog from ruining your hard work by fencing off your bushes. Make sure that this fencing is built with the size of your dog in mind.

Chicken wire may be suitable for smaller dogs, but larger dogs will need more durable, stronger fencing. 

Other Plants That Are Toxic To Dogs 

Even though true roses may not be poisonous, you should always make sure that other plants within your yard are not toxic for your pup.

Here are some of the most toxic plants for dogs that you should be aware of. There are many more than the ones below, so always do your research before exposing your pup to your garden.

  • Gardenia: This is often mistaken for a rose. Dogs may start vomiting, display itchy spots, or get the runs after consuming these.
  • Azalea: A rhododendron class that can lead to gastrointestinal distress, even if your dog consumes a small amount. More seriously, your dog may develop breathing problems or experience a coma. 
  • Crocus: The spring crocus variety can lead to light stomach problems, but the autumn crocus is even more dangerous. Autumn crocus plants can lead to impaired organs, internal bleeding, and respiratory breakdown, based on how much matter was ingested.
  • Begonia: Some of these can look like roses. The underground stem is the most poisonous, but ingestion of other parts can lead to swelling, vomiting, and burning within the mouth. 

Final Thoughts

Roses aren’t poisonous to dogs, provided that they are part of the true rose family. Even though they aren’t toxic, try to discourage your pup from eating leaves and petals, as they can lead to stomach problems.

Roses also have sharp thorns which can seriously injure your dog. Thorns can cause eye scratches which can turn into severe corneal ulcers. Always dispose of cuttings after pruning bushes, to avoid your pet from stepping over them.

Some plants, like Gardenia and Begonias, look like roses but are very toxic to dogs. It’s a good idea to go over all of the plants in your yard and ensure that they are pet-friendly before letting your pup explore the area. 

Remember to monitor your dog at all times and block off access to these areas to ensure that they don’t hurt themselves on the thorns. If any accidents happen, contact your vet for advice at once