Pet-Friendly Houseplants

Yes, you can have both foliage and furry friends in your home

Pet Friendly Houseplant List

Curious canines and uncooperative cats can make keeping an indoor garden exasperating, not to mention, unsafe. Every year, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) publishes a list of the top toxins most commonly reported that year — and plants are routinely in the top 10. Some of our favorite houseplants, including sago palm, aloe vera, and peace lilies are incredibly poisonous to cats and dogs.

However, it is possible to be both a pet parent and a plant parent simultaneously; you just need to choose wisely. What houseplants are safe for cats and dogs?

Pet-Friendly Houseplants


Common Name Botanical Name

Air plant

African Violet

Bird's Nest fern

Blue Echeveria

Boston fern

Burro's Tail

Cast Iron plant

Christmas cactus

Gerbera daisies

Hoya plant

Moth orchid

Parlor palm

Pancake plant

Ponytail palm

Prayer plant

Rattlesnake plant

Rubber plant

Spider plant

Zebra plant

Tillandsia spp.

Streptocarpus ionanthus

Asplenium nidus

Echeveria glauca

Nephrolepis exaltata ‘Bostoniensis’

Sedum morganianum

Aspidistra elatior

Schlumbergera bridgesii

Gerbera jamesonii

Hoya spp.

Phalaenopsis spp.

Chamaedorea elegans

Pilea peperomioides

Beaucarnea recurvata

Maranta leuconeura

Calathea lancifolia

Peperomia obtusifolia

Chlorophytum comosum

Haworthia fasciata

Related Article: 5 Easy Houseplants For Any Home

Tips for Keeping Pets Away From Houseplants

1. Put plants out of reach

This one is a no-brainer; the easiest way to protect both your plants and pets is to keep them separated. This might mean using a tall planter, a hanging basket, or simply keeping your sunroom door closed

2. Foil, with foil

Cats love to dig and scratch, especially in loose, gritty surface like soil. Try covering the surface of the soil around your plant with tin foil to deter. Don't want your houseplants to look like leftovers? Use stones or a specialty mat like the Cat Scat Mat instead.

3. Repel with smell

Soak cottonballs in a 2:1 mixture of water to either vinegar or rubbing alcohol, and place them lightly on the soil surface. Do not pour either vinegar or rubbing alcohol directly on the plant (a sure death sentence). If either of the above ingredients are too strong for your nose, try placing lemon or orange peels in the pot surrounding your plant — most pets find citrus incredibly unappealing.

Be advised that the consumption of any plant material may cause gastrointestinal illness for dogs and cats. If you believe that your animal is ill or may have ingested a poisonous substance, contact either your local veterinarian or the APCC 24-hour emergency poison hotline at 1-888-426-4435.

Related Article: How to Keep Dogs and Cats Out of the Garden

Last updated: 01/30/2024