Pyracantha (Firethorn)



Pyracantha is a large thorny evergreen shrub from the Rosaceae family.  They are closely related to and resemble the Cotoneaster but unlike the cotoneaster Pyracantha have numerous thorns and serrated leaves. The plants can grow up to 20ft tall is not pruned. the flowers which are produced in late spring or early summer are either red, white, orange or yellow.  The flowers develop throughout the summer and mature into berries (pomes) in late autumn.
Pyracantha are considered a valuable  ornamental plant not only for their decorative often very dense flowers and berries often but for the their dense thorny structure which makes a impenetrable barrier. This barrier is great for use in conjunction with one’s home security and makes Pyracantha a great alternative to artificial fences and walls. They are also good shrubs for roosting and nesting birds in a wildlife garden as the summer flowers attract and abundance of bees which help to pollinate the flowers to produce the berries which the birds use as a food source.


Native to Southeastern Europe and Asia.

Conditions of Poisoning:
Ingestion, Skin contact

Toxic Principle:
Cyanogenic Glycosides,  Cyanide

Clinical Symptoms:
The sharp thorns can often leave a very sore and red area which usually disappears after 2 or 3 days. This is possibly due to the minute amounts of cyanide in the plant. When ingested the berries produce mild gastrointestinal upset, however if eaten over time the berries small amount of cyanide will build up in the intestinal track and can lead to more serious complications such as disrupt heart function, trigger circulatory failure and lead to death.


 Lone Star English Setter Club provides this information
as a partial reference of the potential poisons that could harm your dog.
We are not veterinarian’s and DO NOT provide medical help.

 If you think that your animal is ill or may have ingested a poisonous substance,
contact your local veterinarian or
the ASPCA’s 24-hour emergency poisoning hotline directly