Pet Friendly Plants for Cats & Dogs Colorful Varieties Edition

There are many lists on the internet claiming that certain plants are safe for cats and dogs that are simply incorrect. A quick search on the ASPCA website reveals this unfortunate trend in seconds and can also be useful if you’re questioning a potential selection of your own. If on the other hand you’ve got nothing in mind, but are interested in acquiring some new greenery, this list of lovely foliage may help you to find the perfect pet-friendly plant for your home.

Pet friendly plants

Keep in Mind: While the plants listed here should be safer for your dog or cat to be around, it’s still not advisable to allow your pets to munch on any of them as it could lead to trouble (upset stomach, vomiting, etc). It’s always a good idea to monitor how your pets interact with any plant and if you notice any bothersome tendencies to perhaps rethink your plant-placement. Small cages, like those for birds, (which can also be highly decorative!) are one attractive way to prevent pets from unwanted munching. Another option might be to choose a location which will be difficult or impossible for your pets to access. Considering alternatives like these can help if your four-legged housemate gets a little too curious about your greenery and may prevent the upset tummies that tend to follow the gobbling of unauthorized flora.

The following species are deemed safer for cats and dogs according to numerous sources including the ASPCA. This simply means that the plants are listed as non-toxic to cats and dogs but this does not guarantee that your pet will not have a negative reaction to the plant, especially if accidentally ingested. If you suspect that your pet has consumed anything potentially harmful please immediately contact your veterinarian, or emergency services, for assistance.

African Violet (Saintpaulia spp)

African Violet
(Saintpaulia spp)
These beautiful flowers can be a great addition to any home, but watch out, they’re fussy about care! Once you understand how they like to be treated, however, you’re not looking at a terrible time investment. For those with sensitive noses it should also be noted that these flowers do not have a scent which might prove very useful in preventing curious pets from investigating.

Barberton Daisy (Gerbera jamesonii)

Barberton Daisy
(Gerbera jamesonii)
Offered in a wide range of colors, this plant can make a cheery centerpiece or regular inhabitant of the home. Depending on your climate you can grow it as an annual or perennial and they survive well either potted indoors, or outside in the garden. Saved seeds can supply a new batch of flowers and with some mild looking after they’re not too hard to grow.

Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesii)

Christmas Cactus
(Schlumbergera bridgesii)
Fairly easy to start and care for, these little beauties can help add some color during cold winter months and they make for some pretty spectacular pet-safe holiday décor too! Unlike their more famous relations they prefer humidity over dry climates, and they need some serious total dark time, but overall they won’t take up your holiday hours with a lot of fussier plant demands. Another option and close relation is the Easter Cactus which is similar in care and nature and is also non-toxic to cats and dogs.

Petunia (Petunia species)

(Petunia species)
These extremely popular flowers come in a number of size and color varieties and are fairly tolerant of relaxed tending, especially if treated as an annual. Perennials will need to kept clear of the cold, but in doing so can be preserved to bloom again and again. They’re a touch finicky about water – not too much, not too little – with an average of once a week tending required for an ideal environment.

Phalaenopsis (Moth) Orchid (Phalaenopsis sp.)

Phalaenopsis (Moth) Orchid
(Phalaenopsis sp.)
A very interesting plant, the Moth Orchid can be difficult to grow and maintain for a variety of reasons such as air roots, necessary repotting, temperature, and more. If you’re willing to take a little time to learn about how they need to be cared for the results can be truly rewarding as not only are these beauties safer for fuzzy housemates, but they also act as a leading, natural air purifier! Most orchid varieties are safe for dogs and cats, although additions such as hybrid mixes or dyes can make that questionable. We’ve chosen to highlight the Moth Orchid here specifically because it’s one of the hardier varieties and due to its popularity it’s also a bit easier to find.

Roses (Rosa Species)

(Rosa Species)
Surprise!! Roses make the cut!
Over the years these famous flowers have developed a reputation for being very difficult to maintain and for good reason: they’re finicky about climate and moisture and susceptible to fungal issues. New breeds however, such as the Knockout, are easier to tend to though reputed not to have the same fullness or scent as their ancestors. All varieties are listed as non-toxic to dogs and cats, though even if your furries are just inspecting don’t forget to help them watch out for those very sharp thorns!

Zinnias (Zinnia species)

(Zinnia species)
Talk about colors! These plants come in almost any one you can think of. They also range in height from inches to feet and offer several flower shapes to choose from. Zinnias are very popular because they are easy to grow and maintain (a good thing as they’re also one-shot annuals) and flower fairly rapidly adding quick life and color to any home or garden.

Annual (China) Aster (Callistephus chinensis)

Annual (China) Aster
(Callistephus chinensis)
Another one that comes in some very nice colors and perhaps even better, it’s easy to care for! These lovely plants prefer cooler weather and can brighten up the house or garden when the warm dwelling species have called it quits for the year.

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