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Top 15 Houseplants Poisonous To Cats

If you have houseplants, or thinking of getting some, you may be keen to understand which ones are dangerous or poisonous for your cat, so you can avoid them…

The following list is some houseplants that are known to be poisonous for cats, and therefore should be avoided:

01. Pothos

An ornamental Pothos plant.

An ornamental Pothos plant.

Pothos grow into beautiful cascading plants, which look lovely hanging from the ceiling. If they are not kept high up, your kitty might mistake the drapey leaves for a toy.

While you don’t have to worry too much if your cat bats at the leaves, you want to ensure they don’t eat any. The pothos plant contains calcium oxalate, which is very toxic to cats. This can cause them to vomit, drool, and swell up.

These plants are known to do well in low light making them an ideal choice for bathrooms or office spaces. Unfortunately, these locations make it easy for them to sneak away and have a nibble of the plant, so caution is a must when you have cats.

02. Sago Palm

A sago palm is a tropical tree that is small enough to grow in your home, making it a coveted option for one who wants to liven up their living space. Not only do they look beautiful, but they help to purify the air in your home.

That being said, a sago palm has cycasin, which is toxic to many household pets including cats. Sadly, the poison within this plant can even be fatal for your furry friend if they manage to eat some of it. It can cause liver damage, nausea, and vomiting.

One of the issues with this plant is the fact that it can be grown inside or even outside. So, even if you avoid using it indoors you have no control over your neighbor growing it next door. But, this is not possible to control, so your focus should be on indoors, which you can regulate or avoid completely.

03. Monstera Deliciosa

A Monstera Deliciosa is a beautiful addition to any home, given that it’s an easy way to add a tropical vibe to the home. You’ve probably seen these plants everywhere on social media.

However, the calcium oxalate in the monstera leaves is very bad for your cat. Cats who manage to bite into a Monstera leaf could potentially burn their mouths. They will drool excessively, and their mouths might even swell.

You may have seen these plants before due to their distinctive holes in the leaves. This is why they are often referred to as ‘The Swiss Cheese Plant’. As cute as that sounds this does not eliminate the risk they offer your kitty.

04. Dumb Cane

A dumb cane definitely doesn’t look dumb. The large leaves growing out of this household tree are truly eye-catching. Being that a dumb cane can grow quite large, your cat might be tempted to try and climb this tree and get a nibble of the big leaves.

There are a couple of toxic qualities to a dumb cane that should be kept away from your cat. These properties can be harmful to your cat’s oral health, causing its mouth to swell or burn. This might lead to your cat struggling to breathe, which is very dangerous.

These Dumb Cane plants, or Dieffenbachia as it is officially known, have a bad reputation mainly because there are many rumors of it being dangerous, not just to cats but children as well. Some of it may be slightly exaggerated but still worth avoiding if you have a cat.

05. Philodendron

While a philodendron is often called a love tree, it does not love your cat. You might be able to find different kinds of philodendrons, but none of them will be safe around your cat.

The philodendron leaves have calcium oxalate in them as well, which will wreak havoc on your cat’s stomach and intestines. It can also cause some damage to their mouths, such as swelling or burning.

Unfortunately, these plants are quite popular in homes because they are quite easy to look after. Especially for novice plant owners. One of the reasons for this is that they adapt to most environments and make it easy to accommodate them.

06. Jade Plants

A jade plant is a succulent which contains a vibrant color and is often referred to as a money plant. A jade plant could bring you some good luck, but only if it’s kept far away from your kitty.

Jade plants are very toxic to many animals, including cats. If your cat manages to ingest a little bit of a jade plant, it will show some worrisome symptoms such as low mood and lethargy, as well as decreased coordination and vomiting.

07. Elephant’s Ear

Elephant ears leaves.

Elephant ears leaves.

The elephant’s ear plant features large leaves that hang down like an elephant’s ear, and they look like a little tropical tree. However, the leaves are very toxic for your kitty, being that they contain calcium oxalates.

This chemical can be potentially fatal for your kitty, as it can cause liver failure and other unsavory symptoms.

These plants, also known as Colocasia, are popular for their tropical look, and this is mainly due to their large leaves, as mentioned earlier, resembling an elephant’s ear. For this reason, it’s important to check if your friend or family has one of these if you plan to visit them with your cat.

08. Lilies

Lilies are a favorite among many, given that they are such elegant flowers. There are many different types of lilies, but none of them should be in a home with a cat.

Lilies are very dangerous for cats to ingest, or even touch. Your cat will most likely show symptoms right away if they get any part of the lily in their mouth, including vomiting and lethargy. They must be taken to the vet as soon as you notice they came in contact with a Lilly.

These Lillies are part of the Lilium genus and are actually a part of a very specific line of perennial plants. The issue is there are many plants that are referred to as Lillies because they have it in their common name. However, not all of them are true lilies.

09. Yucca Plant

A yucca plant might be safe for humans to eat, but the same cannot be said for your kitty. A yucca plant has saponins in it, which is known to be very harmful to cats.

Consumption of any plant with saponins in them will cause your cat to appear drunk, as they have trouble staying coordinated. They might also get sick and have diarrhea.

These Yucca plants are loved for their overall look. In particular, creating an attractive focal point in any home. The beauty of these plants is that they can be grown in containers indoors meaning they can be enjoyed inside. But, for cat owners, this is a gift and a curse.

10. Peonies

Many who love flowers enjoy having peonies, given that they live a long time when they are well taken care of. However, they must be kept as far away from a cat as possible.

Peonies are poisonous for your cat if they are eaten, and will cause them to become ill and vomit. They might also experience depression and low mood, and they could also potentially have diarrhea.

Although these plants are happiest outdoors they are known to be relocated indoors, especially during the winter to avoid harsh weather conditions. Which, for concerned cat owners, this can be a problem.

11. Rubber Plant

A rubber plant is not a plant made from rubber; it’s often referred to as a focus. These popular plants are large and stunning, but they are not good for your cats to get their paws on.

While they might not have a very bad or dangerous reaction to a rubber plant, they will get some very uncomfortable symptoms such as vomiting, loss of coordination, and diarrhea.

The Rubber Plant, also known as ficus elastica, is loved for its exotic look. It is also because it is happy to flourish in full direct sun, as well as dimly lit shaded areas. It can make any simple room look elegant.

12. Snake Plants

A snake plant is a favorite amongst plant lovers for its simplistic, minimalist growing pattern. The leaves are fantastic at keeping the air quality of your home safe, but not your cat.

The snake plant has saponins within it, which can make your cat very ill. Eating part of a snake plant will cause your cat to become nauseous, and they might also get sick or have diarrhea.

The Snake Plant, also known as Sansevieria, is ideal for busy professionals because of its forgiving nature. Meaning, it can literally be forgotten for a few weeks and still look gorgeous. Meaning, you do not have to be at its side every day to get success.

While this is a benefit for most, it means that they can be a problem for cat owners as there is a good chance you may have one before getting a cat or know someone that may have one, that your cat may visit with you.

13. Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus leaves are a top choice for those who love greenery but aren’t a fan of large plants or flowers. The wedding industry has also led to eucalyptus’ enormous popularity. They might smell lovely, but they are not so lovely for your cat to get close to.

If your cat does manage to get some eucalyptus, it can be helped with some treatment from the vet. You’ll most likely notice your cat drooling, and not being as interested in their food as they usually are. They might also have some bouts of vomiting and diarrhea.

One of the reasons for the popularity of eucalyptus plants is the fact that they stay looking stunning all year round, and if you have the space outside, can grow quite tall. For plant lovers this is great, but as a concerned cat owner, maybe not so much.

14. Asparagus Fern

While some ferns are touted as being safe to have in a pet-friendly home, the asparagus fern is not one of them. This plant, which actually isn’t a fern other than in name, is toxic for your cat if they eat it. It can also harm your cat if they touch it, as the sap can burn their skin.

The chemicals in an asparagus fern will make your cat nauseous and will disrupt their stomachs. This most likely will not be fatal, but your cat should get treatment as soon as you know that they got their paws on some of this plant.

One of the known appeals of these Asparagus Fern plants is how they look flowing over the edge of a neat shelf and how they mix well with other plants. Some people even love to purposely mix them with plants with contrasting leaves to make them stick out more.

But, for cat owners that are feeling cautious, these benefits can soon become a problem to fix.

15. Aloe

Having an aloe plant in your home is a smart idea in order to remedy burns in a pinch. However, these little plants need to be kept away from your cat.

Not only could your cat hurt themselves because of the little pricks on the aloe leaves, but there are also toxins within the plant that could harm your cat. If your cat gets a nibble of an aloe plant, they will most likely throw it up. They might also act a little tired and weak or might have some diarrhea.

Aloe Plants are arguably one of the most well-known plants because of their great looks and other believed health benefits. Which is great for plant lovers, or even casual owners that just want to spruce up their dull-looking home.

But, for cat owners that are concerned about the effects they have on their kitty, not so much of a great thing.

Lindsey Browlingdon