Having pets in the home doesn't mean that plants are out of the question. Most pets don't really care about plants and won't pay any attention to them. Although if your pet is the exception to this (and there's always an exception!) then knowing which plants are toxic and which are not is very important. However even if a plant is considered nontoxic, pets could still experience problems if they eat it, they just won't be life-threatening. With that said, it's important to call your vet if you have any concerns about your pet eating one of your plants or showing signs of distress.
Another option to keep your pet safe is to keep plants out of reach. Many plants are happy in hangers and you can just trim back the leaves if they get too long. Closed cabinets, such as IKEA cabinets have become a very popular way to display plant collections and they keep pets out of harms way. You can even add grow lights and turn them into a full blown greenhouse! There are instagram pages dedicated to just this, so if it interests you it's worth looking into.
Ok, lets discuss first the top 10 most common house plants that are toxic to pets (and humans)
- Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane)
- Fiddle-Leaf Fig
- Hoya Hindu Rope (Carnosa Compacta)
- Peace Lily
- Philodendron (all)
- Satin Pothos
- Snake Plant
- Monstera - Adansonii, Deliciosa, (Swiss Cheese Plant)
- Syngonium (Arrowhead Plant)
- Umbrella Plant
Obviously this list is not exhaustive and there are many hundreds more plants that are toxic to our pets. It's a good idea to learn about each new plant that your bring home and be sure to keep it where it and your pets will be safest.
And now the top 10 most common houseplants that are nontoxic to pets. These plants can still cause stomach upset if eaten.
- Epiphyllum Anguliger (Fishbone Cactus/Zig Zag Cactus)
- Chinese Money Plant
- Tillandsia (Air Plants)
- Moth Orchid
- Nerve Plant
- Peperomia (all)
- Red Prayer Plant
- Spider Plant
- Stromanthe Tristar
- Polka Dot Plant
Being pet parent won't stop you from also being a plant parent or visa versa and the known health benefits of both make it worth it to put in some extra effort. You can find a more complete list of toxic plants on the SPCA's website.