The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals lists 394 plants as toxic to dogs and 405 as toxic to cats. If you have family pets who eat first and ask permission later (if at all) bring only greenery known to be non-toxic into your home.

Pet-Friendly Plants and Flowers

The ASPCA offers 561 dog-friendly options. Among them are:

Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans) —This native plant of Mexico and Guatemala doesn’t mind low light conditions or crowded roots, making it a perfect potted plant for most rooms in a home. Its leaves do drop from the bottom over time, but you need not worry since they are safe as an accidental snack, according to the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Extension.

Gerbera Daisy (Gerbera jamesonii) —Fall in love with the brightly colored flowering plant and let friends and family know to choose it if ever ordering flowers for you. It likes partial to full sun best.

Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesii) —This houseplant flowers in the winter, producing different colors depending on the variety. Give it full sunlight in the fall and winter, and light shade the rest of the year. Red proves popular as an alternative to the poinsettia, which the ASPCA says can cause mouth and stomach irritation to dogs if eaten.

Golden Bamboo (Phyllostachys aurea) —The tall, treelike grass makes an excellent indoor plant in addition to its common use as a landscaping screen. Place it in a spot that gets plenty of sun or only light shade. Do not confuse the Golden and Lucky Bamboo, the latter of which is toxic to dogs and cats, according to the Pet Poison Helpline.

The ASPCA offers 551 cat-friendly options. Among them are:

Blue Echeveria (Echeveria derenbergii) —If you regularly forget to water plants, this succulent offers low maintenance and non-toxicity. Give it bright light, though, or its blue leaves will turn an unhappy green.

Dallas Fern (Nephrolepis biserrata) — Cats like the fluffiness of ferns. To keep them out of claw’s reach, for aesthetic purposes not toxicity, place on a high shelf or above a cabinet in a bathroom. The low light and moist conditions suit the fern well.

Majesty Palm (Ravenea rivularis) —A native of Madagascar, this plant does best in bright but indirect light, making it perfect for a living room corner near a window or on the patio. Pull it inside, though, if temps will dip below 35 degrees F.

Cat Grass — Get the commercially available mix of oat, rye, barley and wheat grasses for your cats to chew on. Not only does it deter damage to other plants in the home, it also allows cats to self-medicate an upset stomach. PetMD reports that grass also contains folic acid, an essential vitamin that helps produce hemoglobin, which moves oxygen in the blood.

All of the above plants are safe for both cats and dogs. The information is presented separately to allow those of you with only dogs or only cats to go directly to the non-toxic plants best suited for your species of pet. To check the toxicity of a plant not on this list, visit the ASPCA website. The organization also offers a 24-hour emergency poison hotline (888) 426-4435.

Filed under: Dog Care

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