Calla lilies are a no-no

Uh-oh, what’s this?? Which dog threw up the Milk Bone treat?

And so began a frantic, all-hands effort to keep Luna the Cockapoo safe in the backyard.

George, the Old Man Bichon, was never one to take any interest in the shrubs. He was less interested in the grass after a rain, preferring to relieve himself indoors, which is very problematic here in Oregon to say the least.

Luna destroys another day lily.

Luna has taken a great liking to lying on several day lilies; at last count there are (were) nearly a dozen day lilies that have thrived for five or more years in our backyard. She thinks chewing the stalks of bear’s breeches is great fun as well. But when she started taking notice of the calla lilies we had planted earlier this spring, we started to distract her.

When she first came home, our daughter who has a personal fear that foxgloves (Digitalis purpurea) near the garden are poisonous to her, pointed out a Google search that indicated foxgloves are a toxic plant to dogs. Luna’s care became a tool to dispense with the foxgloves, also planted last year and which were thriving. I moved them.

But we’re also wanting Luna (and our daughter!) to be on her own; independence was a trait we thought we observed in Luna when we were researching Cockapoos (see my earlier blog, “Breeding the right ingredients.”)

Despite our best intentions and during a brief period unsupervised, we found calla lily blooms on the patio that had been Luna-tized. And then there was the half digested Milk Bone next to the calla lily. That and a slightly lethargic dog made us take notice. The vet, with whom we are now on a first name basis, was duly alerted. Many frantic hourly texts and calls later, Luna was very much alive and wanting to play ball.

Luna’s favorite dead lily bed.

Once again, out came the Google searches. Yes, calla lilies are harmful. A brief memorial was held for dead flowers; Luna the most beloved lingered nearby. The surviving calla lilies took new residence in the front yard. So did the azaleas. Now there are moon-sized craters where landscaping once thrived.

Further searches uncovered a longer list of toxic landscaping, care of the ASPCA (click here to read the list). Our daughter is on red alert.

Our backyard may never be the same…