Household plants are great for decoration, ambiance, improving air quality, and bringing your home to life. If you also have pets, there are some important things for you to consider when purchasing and placing houseplants. Because if Sparky of Miss Fluff gets ahold of a plant, they are certainly not bad pets, they’re just doing what they naturally do- being curious, and getting into things. So, it’s up to you as their owner to ensure their safety with household plants. Here’s the rundown on which houseplants are toxic or safe for cats and dogs and how to create a home that’s beautiful and safe.
Toxic Plants for Pets
Here’s a short list of the houseplants that are the most toxic to cats and dogs: golden dieffenbachia, amaryllis, philodendron, peace lily, anthurium, hyacinth, lablab, lupine, lobelia, rhubarb, dieffenbachia, Swiss cheese plant, Chinese evergreen, dracaena, pothos, ficus, anthurium, aloe, desert rose, kalanchoe, snake plant, euphorbia, asparagus fern, schefflera. If you have a question about a plant, best to ask before bringing it into your home.
To keep it simpler here are several plants that are safe for your pets and add beauty and purification to your home. Safe plants include Calathea, areca palm, cast iron plant, Christmas cactus, episcia, false aralia, orchid, bromeliad, peperomia, echeveria, haworthia, sempervivum, gynura, and plectranthus.
Best Houseplants for Pets
There are a few plants that stand out as excellent choices for pet safe houseplants. The Boston Fern is a great choice, and they don’t require direct sunlight. Not all ferns are safe for pets, so make sure you pick the Boston Fern specifically. Also, a great low light houseplant choice is the Spider Plant. Great at improving air quality and very low maintenance, this houseplant is a perfect choice for someone who wants something safe and easy to manage. One more popular option is Bamboo Palm, which is another easy houseplant for low maintenance plant owners.
There are many things to remember when dealing with toxic plants. Toxic plants have different amounts of toxins depending on their age and health, so while your pet might not have had a reaction before, it doesn’t mean they aren’t susceptible to the toxins, they might have just gotten lucky. Additionally, different parts of different plants hold the toxicity. For some, it’s in the petals, for others, in the roots, seeds, or stem. Finally, if you do choose to keep toxic plants in your house, it’s important to keep them out of reach of your pets. Remember that pets can jump and climb, so best to keep plants on very high shelves or even hanging.
What to Do if Your Pet Eats a Houseplant?
What happens with toxic houseplants? Some plants are dangerous to the touch and others are dangerous if ingested. If a plant is considered toxic to the touch, most likely it will at most cause irritation to your pet’s skin. If you are worried that your pet might have ingested a toxic plant, here are some symptoms to look out: vomiting or diarrhea, racing or irregular pulse, rapid breathing, cold paws, or extreme lethargy. Serious toxicity, like in lilies, or ingestion of large amounts of a toxic plant can lead to severe kidney damage, cardiovascular failure, seizures, or liver failure, so it’s very important to pay close attention to your dog’s symptoms and watch what houseplants you have.
What to do if you notice symptoms? First, make sure to get your pet away from whatever they might have gotten into. Check out your plants to see if it looks like they’ve been chewed on or eaten. Give us a call at AMC right away. It’s better to have your pet checked out than to put your pet in more danger by ignoring symptoms. At AMC, we know accidents happen, but keeping your pet healthy is what we do best.