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20 Pet Safe Plants That Are Non-Toxic To Animals

As pet owners, our furry companions are more than just animals; they’re beloved family members. We go to great lengths to ensure their safety, comfort, and well-being, which extends into every corner of our homes—including our choice of greenery. When selecting pet-friendly plants for your home, it’s a good idea to choose safe houseplants that won’t hurt your furry friends. 

Pet Safe Plants

20 Pet Safe Plants That Are Non-Toxic To Animals

The safety of our pets must always take precedence, making the selection of pet-safe plants a paramount concern for responsible pet parents. Non-toxic greenery allows us to enjoy the best of both worlds: beautifying our living spaces while ensuring they remain safe havens for our pets. Let’s explore a variety of non-toxic plants that add beauty and vibrancy to your home without compromising the safety of your pets.

dog safe plants

List of Dog-Safe Plants

Embarking on a journey through the realm of pet-safe plants introduces us to a diverse tapestry of greenery, each with its unique aesthetic appeal. Sometimes, the most popular houseplants are not the best choices for our furry friends. Choosing the right plant for a home that is shared with a pet is something to consider. It’s important to make a good choice when shopping for pet-friendly houseplants. 

Together, these 20 pet-safe plants (listed with their scientific name and their common names) offer a rich palette of textures, colors, and forms, allowing pet owners to create a safe and beautiful indoor oasis. When shopping for new plants, consider one of these options. They will each make a great addition to your home. 

Spider Plant

1. Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

The Spider Plant, with its graceful, arching leaves and playful spiderettes, offers a lively burst of green. 

  • Care Tips: Keep soil lightly moist; prefers well-drained soil.
  • Light: Thrives in bright, indirect light but can tolerate lower light conditions.

2. Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata)

The Boston Fern impresses with its lush, feathery fronds, creating a soft, verdant cascade. 

  • Care Tips: Maintain consistently moist soil and high humidity; mist regularly.
  • Light: Prefers bright, indirect light; avoid direct sunlight which can scorch leaves.
African Violet

3. African Violet (Saintpaulia)

The African Violet, with its rosette of dark green leaves and vibrant blooms, adds a splash of color to any space.

  • Care Tips: Keep soil moderately moist and use room-temperature water. Avoid getting water on leaves to prevent spotting.
  • Light: Enjoys bright, indirect light; too much direct sunlight can damage leaves.

4. Areca Palm (Dypsis lutescens)

The Areca Palm stands tall, its feathery fronds whispering of tropical breezes.

  • Care Tips: Water when the top inch of soil feels dry; prefers high humidity.
  • Light: Bright, indirect light; can tolerate some direct sunlight.
Bamboo Palm

5. Bamboo Palm (Chamaedorea seifrizii)

The Bamboo Palm’s elegant stalks and lush leaves evoke a serene, forest-like ambiance.

  • Care Tips: Keep soil consistently moist; well-draining soil is essential.
  • Light: Thrives in bright, indirect light but can adapt to lower light conditions.

6. Burro’s Tail (Sedum morganianum)

The Burro’s Tail, with its trailing stems densely packed with plump, blue-green leaves, is a succulent lover’s delight.

  • Care Tips: Allow soil to dry out between waterings; succulent care.
  • Light: Prefers bright, indirect light; some direct sunlight is beneficial.

7. Cast Iron Plant (Aspidistra elatior)

The Cast Iron Plant lives up to its name with broad, glossy leaves that exude strength and simplicity.

  • Care Tips: Water sparingly; soil should be allowed to dry out between waterings.
  • Light: Tolerates low light well; ideal for dimly lit rooms.

8. Calathea (Calathea spp.)

Calatheas, with their intricately patterned leaves, bring a touch of the exotic to the indoor garden.

  • Care Tips: Keep soil consistently moist but not waterlogged; appreciates high humidity.
  • Light: Prefers moderate to low indirect light; avoid direct sunlight.

9. Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesii)

  The Christmas Cactus, with its segmented stems and festive blooms, brings a hint of holiday cheer.

  • Care Tips: Allow the top layer of soil to dry out between waterings; reduce watering in the winter.
  • Light: Bright, indirect light; too much direct sun can cause leaf scorching.

10. Haworthia (Haworthia spp.)

The compact, rosette-forming Haworthia, with its spiky, translucent leaves, offers a sculptural element.

  • Care Tips: Allow soil to dry completely between waterings; well-draining soil is crucial.
  • Light: Prefers bright, indirect light; can tolerate some direct sunlight.

11. Money Tree (Pachira aquatica)

The Chinese Money Plant, with its braided trunk and vibrant, palmate leaves, symbolizes prosperity and good fortune. 

  • Care Tips: Keep soil moist but not waterlogged; prefers high humidity.
  • Light: Thrives in medium to bright indirect light; avoid direct sunlight.

12. Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans)

The Parlor Palm’s delicate, feathery fronds add a touch of elegance to any room.

  • Care Tips: Keep soil lightly moist; avoid overwatering.
  • Light: Prefers low to medium light; avoid direct sunlight.

13. Peperomia (Peperomia spp.)

Peperomias, with their wide variety of leaf shapes and textures, are a delight to collect.

  • Care Tips: Allow the top inch of soil to dry out between waterings; susceptible to root rot if overwatered.
  • Light: Bright, indirect light is best; can tolerate lower light levels.

14. Prayer Plant (Maranta leuconeura)

The Prayer Plant, known for its striking leaf patterns and the dramatic way its leaves fold up at night, adds movement and intrigue.

  • Care Tips: Keep soil consistently moist; appreciates high humidity.
  • Light: Prefers bright, indirect light; avoid direct sunlight.
Ponytail Palm

15. Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)

The Ponytail Palm, with its bulbous base and cascading, hair-like leaves, provides a whimsical focal point.

  • Care Tips: Allow soil to dry out between waterings; very drought tolerant.
  • Light: Prefers bright light; can tolerate direct sunlight.
Rattlesnake Plant

16. Rattlesnake Plant (Calathea lancifola)

The Rattlesnake Plant, with its elongated leaves marked by wavy patterns, mirrors the wild beauty of the tropics.

  • Care Tips: Keep soil consistently moist but not soggy; high humidity is preferred.
  • Light: Thrives in bright, indirect light; avoid direct sunlight.

17. Swedish Ivy (Plectranthus verticillatus)

Swedish Ivy, with its trailing vines and glossy, scalloped leaves, is perfect for hanging baskets.

  • Care Tips: Keep soil evenly moist; prefers well-draining soil.
  • Light: Bright, indirect light is ideal; can tolerate some direct sunlight.
Venus Flytrap

18. Venus Flytrap (Dionaea muscipula)

The Venus Flytrap offers a fascinating blend of botanical intrigue and predatory prowess with its jaw-like traps.

  • Care Tips: Use distilled water or rainwater; keep soil moist but not waterlogged.
  • Light: Prefers bright, indirect light; some direct sunlight is beneficial.

19. Wax Plant (Hoya carnosa)

The Wax Plant, with its thick, waxy leaves and star-shaped flowers, brings a touch of the exotic. 

  • Care Tips: Allow the top inch of soil to dry out between waterings; do not overwater.
  • Light: Bright, indirect light is ideal; can tolerate some direct sunlight.
Zebra Plant

20. Zebra Plant (Haworthiopsis attenuata)

The Zebra Plant stands out with its striking, striped leaves that add a bold, graphic element to the collection.

  • Care Tips: Allow soil to dry out slightly between waterings; succulent care.
  • Light: Prefers bright, indirect light; can tolerate some direct sunlight.

Each of these plants adds a unique touch to your home while ensuring the safety and well-being of your pets. When choosing plants, always consider the specific light and care requirements to ensure they thrive in your home environment.

Tips For Plant Parents For Better Care

watering schedule

For those embracing the joys of plant parenthood, ensuring the health and vitality of your green companions involves more than just regular watering. Here are some essential tips to elevate your plant care routine, creating a thriving indoor garden where both your plants and pets can flourish:

1. Understand Each Plant’s Needs – Different plants have unique requirements for light, water, humidity, and soil. Research each new plant’s specific needs to provide the best care possible.

2. Regular Watering Schedule – Overwatering is as harmful as under-watering. Learn the watering needs of each plant and adjust according to the season and the plant’s growth phase.

light for plants

3. Provide Adequate Light – Light is crucial for photosynthesis. Position plants in your home based on their light requirements, utilizing windowsills, shelves, or artificial grow lights for those needing more illumination.

4. Maintain Humidity Levels – Many houseplants thrive in higher humidity. Use a humidifier, regularly mist your plants, or create a pebble tray with water to increase ambient humidity, especially during dry winter.

5. Fertilize Properly – Plants need nutrients to grow. Use a suitable fertilizer for indoor plants, following the recommended frequency and dosage to avoid nutrient burn.

6. Repot When Necessary – Plants can become root-bound if they’re in the same pot for too long. Repotting into a slightly larger container with fresh soil every few years can promote healthier growth.

7. Prune Regularly – Pruning helps remove dead or yellowing leaves, encourages bushier growth, and keeps your plants looking their best. It can also help prevent disease spread.

8. Pest and Disease Management – Keep an eye out for signs of pests and diseases, such as discoloration, spots on leaves, or visible insects. Treat promptly with non-toxic, pet-safe options.

9. Choose Pet-Safe Plants – Always opt for plants that are safe for pets. Even non-toxic plants can cause mild digestive upset if ingested, so it’s best to keep plants out of reach if your pet is known to nibble.

10. Educate Yourself on Emergency Care – Know the symptoms of plant toxicity in pets and have contact information for your vet and the nearest pet emergency center handy, just in case.

safe environment

11. Create a Safe Environment – Use stable plant stands and secure heavy pots to prevent them from tipping over, which could injure your pet or damage your plant.

12. Involve Your Pets Safely – Introduce your pets to your plants under supervision to teach them what is not a toy. Some pet owners find that having designated ‘pet-safe’ greens for their pets to interact with keeps them away from other poisonous plants.

Integrating these pet-friendly home care tips into your routine ensures a healthy, vibrant indoor garden that coexists harmoniously with your pets. Remember, the key to successful plant parenthood is attentiveness and a willingness to learn from your experiences and your plants’ responses to your care.

Toxic Effects On Curious Pets

toxic effects on animals

When a pet ingests a toxic plant, it can exhibit a range of symptoms depending on the type of plant and the amount ingested. You could witness an upset stomach or trouble breathing. Pet owners must recognize these signs early to provide prompt and appropriate care. Here are some common symptoms that may indicate your pet has ingested a toxic plant:

1. Gastrointestinal Symptoms

  • Vomiting: One of the most immediate signs; may contain pieces of the plant.
  • Diarrhea: Can be watery or contain blood.
  • Drooling or Salivation: Excessive drooling can indicate oral irritation or nausea.
  • Loss of Appetite: A sudden disinterest in food.

2. Neurological Symptoms

  • Lethargy or Weakness: Generalized weakness or a noticeable decrease in energy levels.
  • Tremors or Seizures: Involuntary shaking or convulsions can indicate severe poisoning.
  • Ataxia: Loss of coordination, stumbling, or difficulty walking.

3. Oral Symptoms

  • Pawing at the Mouth: Indicative of oral pain or discomfort.
  • Swelling: Look for swelling around the mouth, throat, or lips, which can indicate an allergic reaction.
  • Ulceration: Sores or ulcers in the mouth or on the gums.

4. Respiratory Symptoms

  • Difficulty Breathing: Wheezing, rapid breathing, or any other signs of respiratory distress.
  • Coughing: Persistent coughing may occur if the plant has caused irritation to the throat or respiratory tract.

5. Cardiac Symptoms

  • Irregular Heartbeat: Noticeable changes in heart rhythm or rate.
  • Weak Pulse: A pulse that is weaker than normal.

6. Renal Symptoms

  • Increased Thirst and Urination: Indicative of kidney involvement.
  • Decreased or Absent Urination: Can indicate severe kidney damage.

7. Skin Irritation

  • Itching or Scratching: More common if the pet has had skin contact with an irritant plant.
  • Redness or Rash: Visible irritation on the skin.

8. Behavioral Changes

  • Agitation or Restlessness: Uncharacteristic behavior suggesting discomfort or pain.
  • Depression: A marked decrease in responsiveness or interest in surroundings.

Recognizing these symptoms early can be crucial for the timely treatment of pet poisoning. If you observe any of these signs and suspect your pet has ingested a toxic plant, it’s essential to seek veterinary care immediately to mitigate the effects and ensure the health and safety of your pet.

What To Do If Your Pet Ingests A Toxic Plant

pet emergency

If your beloved pet ingests a toxic plant, immediate and appropriate action is crucial to ensure their safety and well-being. The first step is to remain calm; your pet needs you to think clearly and act quickly. Quickly identify the plant your pet has ingested, as this information will be invaluable to the veterinarian in providing the right treatment. If possible, remove any remaining pieces of the plant from your pet’s mouth to prevent further ingestion. 

Next, dog owners should observe your pet for any signs of distress such as drooling, vomiting, lethargy, or abnormal behavior, and note these symptoms for the vet. It’s imperative to contact your veterinarian or the nearest pet emergency clinic immediately, providing them with details about the plant ingested and the symptoms observed. Additionally, the ASPCA Poison Control Center can be a vital resource in such emergencies, offering guidance and advice on how to proceed. 

Keep their contact information, as well as your vet’s, readily accessible to avoid delays in emergencies. Remember, in a pet health emergency, time is of the essence, and quick, informed decisions can make a significant difference in the outcome for your pet. Good luck! 

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