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Best Plants That Are Safe For Cats To Eat

September 16, 2022 6 min read

Plants safe for cats to eat

Two of the most precious things for a homeowner are undoubtedly plants and pets. However, if the latter decides to give a friendly nibble on the lush plant, chaos is bound to ensue, most often in the form of diarrhea, vomiting, and allergies. Most furry felines tend to stick their noses and heads in everyone’s business, and it is only a matter of time until curiosity gets the better of even the most well-behaved felines. They munch on a leaf or two for an impromptu mid-day snack. After all, they have a track record of nibbling on anything they can get their paws on—cushion covers, scrunchies, your fingers, etc. While several plants and flowers are unsafe for them, it is a relief to learn that the world has plants that are safe for cats to eat.

Plants That Are Safe For Cats

Pet parents who are also fond of plants do not need to choose one over the other. These plants are cat-friendly and can spruce up your interiors with their beauty. You can turn your room into a Pinterest-worthy nook with some green decor and fairy lights, and rest assured that your four-legged friend will remain safe and healthy even after eating a few leaves off the plant.

Let’s look at some of the best plants that are safe for your cat to eat.

Spider Plants

These plants flourish indoors and make a home from any pot you put them in. They do not need direct sunlight and come in numerous varieties that are safe for cats to eat. The leaves of these plants resemble spider legs, bursting through the grounds and arching outwards in beautiful symmetry. They are bound to enhance your cat’s curiosity, but in this case, it won’t kill them!

Grass

grass pets

The long, slender blades must appeal to cats as they chew on the grass with a satisfying crunch. However, not every type of grass is safe for them. It’s best to go for cat grass or lemongrass. Even though the blades of the latter are not as long and thin as cat grass, you will find your pet rubbing their faces, nibbling, and chewing on them often.

African Violets

While these require better care than the hardy Spider Plant, African Violets can enliven a space with their vibrant flowers. Even though they are safe for cats, they often thrive in smaller pots which can be easily knocked over when your curious feline decides to run amok. If you wish to avoid a mess, plant them in bigger and heavier pots and keep them out of your cat’s reach.

True Palms

The lush, big True Palms are an ideal addition to your backyard or garden and can flourish beautifully in warm climates. You can find them in several varieties, including Areca, Ponytail, and Parlor. However, steer clear of palms with Cycad or Sago in their names since they are not true palms and may be unsafe for cats.

Succulents

Wait, don’t place an order for every succulent online just yet! You need to pick cat-friendly succulents carefully. While Burro’s Tail and Haworthia are safe for cats to eat, Jade, Kalanchoe, and Aloe Vera should be avoided.

Bamboo

bamboo cats

Pandas are not the only animals that love chomping on bamboo shoots, leaves, and stems. Cats love to explore and nibble on this plant, too. While this plant is non-toxic for them, make sure to keep it out of reach if you find them making a regular snack out of it.

Swedish Ivy

If the Ivy is preceded with the word English, avoid it at all costs, as they are toxic for cats and, if ingested, may lead to several health concerns, including abdominal pain, drooling, vomiting, and diarrhea. Similarly, Pothos—commonly known as Devil’s Ivy—is also unsafe for your furry friend. If bitten, these leaves send forth an array of minuscule calcium oxalate crystals that resemble needles. They affect the throat and mouth and cause breathing problems. On the other hand, Swedish Ivy is cat-friendly and easy to care for.

Red Prayer Plant

The vibrant stripes on the leaves of this plant make it an eye-catcher, especially if it is placed against a neutral background. With a decent amount of sunlight, damp soil, and mist on its leaves, it can flourish and become an occasional snack for your cat.

Boston Fern

Boston Fern falls under the category of true fern and is completely safe for cats. On the other hand, Fern Palm is highly toxic to pets as they are Cycads and not true ferns.

Bromeliads

These plants bear vibrant flowers and are easy to grow. You can keep them indoors or on your patio, as they are safe for cats to eat. You can also place it on your feline’s litter box and watch them play with it.

Pilea Peperomioides

With its cute coin-shaped leaves, this plant may be a quick snack for your cat. You may keep it on a windowsill and water it once a week. Alternatively, you may keep it next to your little friend’s boxy scratcher and watch them play with it after a good scratching session!

Cast-Iron Plant

If you are not one with green fingers, this flowering plant is ideal for you. It thrives on shade, can tolerate drought, and is safe for cats. It grows even in neglectful conditions and flourishes both indoors and outdoors.

Money Plant

One of the most common indoor plants, it is non-toxic and adds to the aesthetic vibe of your room. It grows with little care and is perfect for busy pet parents.

Silver Vine

These plants are not only safe for cats but are also healthy for them. They often act as stress busters for your pet and make them happy. You might even get a chance to give them a belly rub and cuddle them without receiving bloody scratches! If silver vine doesn’t work on your cat, you may get alternatives such as cat thyme and catnip.

Fruits, Vegetables, and Herbs

If you love growing fruit or vegetable-bearing plants or herbs but are wary of their effects on your pet, consider those that are safe for cats to chew. However, it is vital to ensure they are not covered with pesticides. Among the fruits, veggies, and herbs that your cat can have fun with are strawberries, cucumber, parsley, corn, blueberries, butternut squash, zucchini, sweet potatoes, acorn squash, rosemary, thyme, sage, and cilantro.

plants safe for cats

 

In addition to these plants, your cat is safe around some bright and colorful flowers. So, if you wish to add a splash of color to your indoor spaces, go for the ones listed below without worrying about the repercussions of your cat taking a big bite out of a floral arrangement!

  • Orchid
  • Daisy
  • Rose (without thorns, of course)
  • Marigold
  • Zinnia
  • Jasmine
  • Hibiscus
  • Sunflower
  • Petunia

Non-toxic plants do not cause poisoning or other adverse reactions in cats. However, it is normal for an occasional spit out. If your cat vomits after eating these plants, remember not to freak out. If you suspect your cat is exhibiting signs of poisoning, feel free to reach out to your vet.

Plants That Are Unsafe For Cats

While we are on this topic, pet parents should also learn about the plants they need to keep away their feline friends from, as they are toxic and harmful to cats. Take a look below.

Lilies

A popular component in floral arrangements, these flowers attract cats easily but are highly toxic for them and can lead to poisoning, organ failure, and even death. From their leaves to pollen to flowers to the water they grow in, every part of the plant is poisonous to them.

Rhododendrons and Azaleas

They are harbingers of diarrhea, heart problems, vomiting, depression, coma, and, in the worst cases, death.

Autumn Crocus

These plants bloom in the fall and can cause indigestion, mouth irritation, bloody vomiting, multiple organ failure, and bone marrow suppression.

Daffodils

They may cause indigestion, abnormal heat patterns, low blood pressure, convulsions, and tremors.

Onions

They may lead to indigestion and, in more severe cases, destroy red blood cells and cause life-threatening anemia.

How To Set Up Plants So That They Are Safe For Cats?

Cats are excellent climbers and jumpers, their curious noses diving everywhere. Always try keeping your plants out of reach from your pet. While it is suggested that you keep toxic plants away from the house, ensure a particular area is catproof if you do not want your cat anywhere near it. You may also invest in artificial plants if you’re going to play it safe and prevent your kitty from digging up the soil or knocking over a pot.

As it is nearly impossible to curate a list of all the safe plants for cats, pet parents must also conduct research before bringing a plant home. Several plant names sound similar, so verifying that a plant is safe on ASPCA is essential. 



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