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Are Japanese Junipers Dangerous for Dogs?

Japanese juniper (Juniperus procumbens or Juniperus chinensis var. procumbens), also referred to as Japanese garden juniper, is a quick, evergreen shrub mainly used as decorative ground-cover. The plant is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones four through 9, depending on the cultivar. Even though not considered hugely toxic to canines, Japanese junipers incorporate some mild toxins that are damaging to dogs if they nibble on the plants.
japanese Junipers and Dogs


Occasionally referred to as Ibuki juniper, Japanese juniper is a close relative of Chinese juniper (Juniperus chinensis). In fact, it is deemed a variety of Chinese juniper, according to a North Carolina State University website write-up. Chinese juniper, like Japanese juniper, is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture zones four through 9, depending on the cultivar. Native to Asia, Japanese juniper is a hearty plant that is used not only as decorative ground-cover but also in the artwork of bonsai gardening. Japanese junipers usually grow no higher than about 2 feet and up to 15 feet in width. The ornamental plants have bluish-green, feathery leaves and have a tendency to grow best in dry or well-drained soil in a site that receives total sun publicity.


Junipers (Juniperus spp.) are deemed mildly toxic to dogs, according to the Morris Veterinary Center Pet Specialty Care site. The plants, such as their stems and leaves, contain small amounts of mildly toxic chemical compounds called labdane acids, including isocupressic acid and agathic acid, according to a research published in the Fall 2011 issue of the ""International Journal of Poisonous Plant Study."" Junipers also incorporate terpenes, the chemical compounds that give the plants a pleasant aroma. These chemical substances can lead to mildly toxic reactions when eaten or even lead to get in touch with dermatitis in some instances when the leaves are touched, according to ""The Handbook of Solvents.""


If your dog decides to chew on Japanese junipers, count on your pup to encounter some gastrointestinal upset, diarrhea and vomiting, according to the University of California-Davis. Rarely, a dog could experience a rash if the pooch rolls around in the plant's needles. Typically, these symptoms are mild, and a swift trip to a veterinarian will make sure that the dog is Okay. Juniper berries, nonetheless, sometimes result in kidney failure if ingested in large quantities, according to a University of Georgia Cooperative Extension internet site post. The good news is, Japanese junipers rarely produce berries.


Although Japanese junipers are mildly toxic to dogs, getting rid of the plants from a yard usually isn't needed to get a dog's security except if the pooch features a pension for eating plants, irrespective of how they taste. The terpenes that juniper plants contain make them taste bitter and unpleasant to animals, which is why creatures for example deer usually stay away from them. As opposed to plants classified as highly toxic to dogs, junipers won't kill a dog, even when parts of the plants are ingested, however they can make the pup sick. If your dog has concerns with pica, a issue in which it eats non-food objects, steer clear of planting Japanese junipers in your yard, or enclose them in garden fencing to prevent your pooch from accessing them.