When you have pets, you want to be sure that you’re growing pet friendly houseplants. So I put together this list of indoor plants safe for cats and dogs that you can keep without worrying that you unknowingly have poisonous plants in your home.
Growing Houseplants That Are Safe For Pets
As pet owners we take great care in making sure our pets are healthy and safe, but sometimes danger can come from unexpected places.
When I first started growing plants indoors, it never crossed my mind that some of them could have been poisonous.
The thought of having toxic indoor plants in the house without even realizing it is very scary. That’s why I wanted to put together a list of common pet friendly houseplants that you can have inside without worry.
I love growing plants indoors, and I have a large collection of houseplants. I also have two cats, including one very curious little lady who loves them as much as I do (maybe more!).
So, it’s a huge relief feeling confident that the one I have in my house won’t harm my cats. Although, that doesn’t protect my houseplants from the danger of having cats.
Related Post: How To Keep Cats Out Of Houseplants
What Houseplants Are Safe For Pets To Eat?
I get a lot of questions from readers about which types of plants are safe to grow around pets. I’ve even had a few people as me “What houseplants are safe for my cat to eat?”
Weeellll….. let me just start by saying I wouldn’t recommend that you allow your cat (or dog) to eat any of your houseplants.
Even non-toxic indoor plants can give your pet an upset stomach and cause vomiting if they eat too much of it.
Rest assured, there are plenty of pet friendly houseplants that won’t harm your furry friend if they do decide to take a bite.
But, if you do want to grow something that’s safe (and yummy!) for your pet to eat, I recommend cat grass.
15 Pet Friendly Houseplants
When I first started doing research on this topic, I was happy to discover that there are hundreds of indoor plants that are non-toxic.
But, in addition to making a list of pet friendly houseplants, I also wanted to choose ones that are common, and would be easy for you to find at your local garden center or big box store. So here are my top picks…
1. Spider plant – Not only are they easy to care for, but spider plants also grow well in low-light conditions, and they one of the best non-toxic houseplants you can have. Plus they’re really pretty, and even come in a few different varieties.
I love my spider plants… although my cats seem to love them too, good thing they’re non-toxic! I grow mine in a spot that’s out of reach of my cats (to protect the plants, not the cats). Read more all about how to grow them here.
2. Ponytail Palm – Ponytail palms make excellent houseplants, and they are safe for cats and dogs. They’re also one of the most common indoor palm plants, and are very easy to grow.
These beauties are drought tolerant, and can grow to become large floor specimens. Not all types of palms are pet safe plants though, so be sure to research the specific variety you have.
3. Bamboo – I remember coming home one day to discover that my cat had been snacking on my bamboo plant.
Thank goodness I already knew that bamboo is a non-toxic plant, or I would have freaked out! They are not only one of the best pet friendly houseplants, but they are fun to collect too.
4. African violet – If you’re looking for houseplants that have ever-blooming, pet friendly flowers, then African violets are the perfect choice.
Keep them in a warm location where they get plenty of light, and these darling little cuties will happily bloom for you all year round.
5. Boston fern – I guess if we learned anything from Garfield the cat, it’s that Boston ferns are non-toxic.
Well, I’m not sure exactly which type of fern was featured in the popular cartoon, but you can be sure that the Boston fern is safe for both cats and dogs.
6. Burros tail succulent (Sedum morganianum) – My plant-obsessed cat has never tried to eat any of my succulents. But she does love to play with the little pieces that break off my burros tail (who knew they would make such fun cat toys?!).
So, I definitely had to make sure this little guy was safe for her, just incase she accidentally swallows a piece. EEK! Thankfully burros tail succulents are indeed safe!
But when it comes to ensuring that other succulents are pet friendly houseplants, it can be hit or miss. So make sure to search for each specific variety of succulent plant you have.
7. Cast iron plant – The cast iron plant definitely lives up to the name; it’s one of toughest houseplants out there. Not only are they beautiful, but they will thrive in just about any room of the house.
My cats have gnawed on the leaves of my cast iron plant before, which is not cool! But at least I can breath easy knowing it won’t harm them.
8. Bromeliads – If you’re looking for some colorful, pet safe indoor plants that grow well without much light, then bromeliads are for you!
They have brightly colored flowers (which is especially nice in the winter!), and you can find them just about anywhere these days. Learn how to grow bromeliads here.
9. Christmas cactus – Is there anything better than an indoor plant that blooms in the dead of winter? Christmas cacti are awesome, and will flower right around the holidays!
Oh, and if you head to the garden center right after Christmas, you might even get lucky and find one on sale!
10. Haworthia succulents – When I put my haworthia succulents outside a few summers ago, the rabbits ate them down to nubs (grrrr!).
So, since I didn’t see any dead rabbits after that (only fatter ones), I was pretty sure they were safe for pets too. I’m so glad they officially made the pet safe houseplants list!
Don’t worry, my haworthias have recovered, but you can still see the damage done by those pesky rabbits on one on the right side of this photo!
11. Peperomia – One of the first plants that I ever owned was a peperomia. I was so relieved to find out that it’s pet safe because I love it so much.
There are tons of different varieties, and they come in all sorts of colors and sizes. Many of them have trailing stems that look great in hanging baskets, or spilling over the edge of a high shelf.
12. Phalaenopsis orchids – Not only are phalaenopsis orchids cat and dog safe indoor plants, they are popular edible flowers too.
If you’ve ever been to Hawaii, you might remember seeing orchid flowers garnishing food plates and tropical drinks all the time.
Using phalaenopsis flowers to garnish and decorate food is becoming the mainstream (and it’s one of my favorite trends!). Learn how to care for orchids here.
13. Prayer plant – I was so happy to find out that prayer plants are non-toxic to pets because this is another one of my favorites.
This cute little specimen closes it leaves at night (like prayer hands), and it’s super fun to grow. They’re also pretty easy, and will even get tiny flowers if you’re really nice to them.
14. Swedish ivy – Even though my cats have never shown any interest in snacking on my Swedish ivy, I still wanted to make sure it was safe to leave this one within reach.
These cool looking houseplants with thick, lush leaves are commonly sold as annuals in the summer, but are great for inside too.
15. Lipstick plant – Lipstick plants are fun, unique, and beautiful. Not only are they pet friendly houseplants, but lipstick plants are easy to care for too.
When treated right, they will flower during the winter, which is fantastic for those of us who live in cold climates!
Houseplants and pets don’t always get along (especially when you have a mischievous kitten on the loose). But some can be downright dangerous for you cats and dogs. So it’s best to add these pet friendly indoor plants to your home.
If you want to find out if yours are safe, the ASPCA plant list is a wonderful resource that you can easily search through.
If you’d like to learn more about caring for indoor plants, especially during the long, dark winter months, then buy my Winter Houseplant Care eBook! It’s got everything you need to know in order to keep your indoor plants thriving all year long! Download your copy today.
Recommended Houseplant Books
- The Complete Houseplant Survival Manual
- The House Plant Expert
- The Indestructible Houseplant
- The Unexpected Houseplant
More Indoor Plant Lists
- 17 Of The Best Office Plants For Your Workspace
- 20 Low Light Indoor Plants To Grow
- 15 Easy Indoor Plants That Anyone Can Grow
- 19 Indoor Plants That Clean The Air In Your House
- 17 Beautiful Purple Houseplants
Share your favorite pet friendly houseplants in the comments below.