10 Toxic Indoor Plants for Pet Parents to Avoid
Updated: Sep 9, 2021
We all love to add greenery to our apartments, helping to create a stress-free ambiance. However, many people do not know that common houseplants can be toxic to cats and dogs. According to ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control, many plants can cause reactions to your pet if ingested, ranging from mild to moderate symptoms. We have compiled a list of 10 common indoor plants to help keep your furry friends healthy and safe and what to do if you suspect your pet has digested any plant. It's essential to remember that plants go by many names, so always check all terms when assessing if they are toxic for pets.
The go-to for sunburns, the Aloe vera plant is beloved by many due to its great medicinal uses. However, it is essential to know that this popular indoor plant contains toxic compounds known as anthraquinones and saponins. When consumed by our furry friends, it can cause diarrhea, vomiting, loss of appetite, and urine color changes. Toxicity ranges from mild to moderate for cats and dogs, so it's best to keep this plant away from pets!
A popular sizeable indoor plant is also commonly known as the Dragon Tree. This plant also contains saponins and causes drooling, vomiting, weakness when ingested by our furry friends. Remember to keep this plant away from cats and dogs as their leaves can be enticing to play with and chew on.
English Ivy is a plant you will want to keep away from cats specifically. The active compound in English Ivy, hederagenin, attacks the digestive and nervous systems. Ingestion causes vomiting, abdominal pain, and moderate swelling, causing difficulty in breathing. If you want to keep an ivy plant in your home, we suggest hanging them high up out of sight for pets.
The calming essential oil of Eucalyptus is famous for stress relief. But many do not know the essential oils from these plants are toxic for our pets, causing salivation, vomiting, diarrhea, and even depression when ingested. So, as much as we may love plants that help destress, we recommend keeping this plant out of sight from your pets!
We all love the Jade Plant, also known as the friendship plant. It is one of the easiest succulents to take care of due to its low maintenance. However, we want to watch out for the thick, shiny, smooth leaves when it comes to our pets. When consumed by our furry friends, it will cause depression, vomiting, loss of coordination, and slow heart rate.
Lilies come in many varieties and are highly toxic to our cats. These plants are known to cause kidney failure in cats, and it is best to avoid having any plant from the lily family in or around the home. These plants make trendy gifts during special occasions, so be mindful to keep them far from reach from pets.
Philodendron (Monstera deliciosa)
Philodendron, which includes the popular gigantic Monstera plant, contains insoluble calcium oxalate crystals, which cause a series of toxic reactions for our furry companions. If ingested, pets can have mouth, throat, and lip irritation. In addition, you will notice excessive drooling and pets having difficulty swallowing and diarrhea. Additional common names to watch out for are Hurricane Plant, Swiss Cheese Plant, Ceriman, Mexican Breadfruit, Split-leaf Philodendron, and Window Leaf Plant.
Pothos or “Devil’s Ivy”
The Pothos plant is a favorite since it requires low maintenance and tolerates common light conditions making it an ideal indoor plant for many plant lovers. However, all parts of the Pothos plants are considered toxic to cats, dogs, and even humans. This plant is a highly poisonous indoor plant for cats. It can cause burning irritation of the mouth, throat, and stomach and excessive drooling, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing in cats if ingested.
The ZZ plant is another plant that is easy to take care of and, with its air-purifying properties, is an attractive indoor plant. However, like Philodendron, the sap of this plant contains calcium oxalate crystals. When consumed by our pets, the sharp crystals create a burning sensation in the mouth and skin.
Due to making excellent starter plants for beginners, snake plants are an indoor favorite. These plants, however, can cause excessive salivation, pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea in cats and dogs when consumed. In addition, the chemical compound saponin is active in this plant which is why it's essential to keep this plant far from our furry friends.
Recommendations Cats and dogs are naturally curious and will want to sniff and eat everything they come across. Almost every plant can have a degree of toxicity if consumed. Many plants can have very mild toxicity, but it is best to stay cautious and keep these plants out of reach as much as possible. Consider plants that can hang from higher levels to avoid having your pets getting into trouble.
Take your cat or dog immediately to the vet if you suspect they have ingested a type of plant exhibiting signs of distress such as vomiting, diarrhea, or any unusual behavior. Symptoms will vary depending on the amount of plant consumed, age, and previous medical conditions.
As always, we’re happy to bring informative content your way to help keep our furry friends healthy and happy. Make sure to follow @BarkBuildings on Instagram for more tips!