The love for our fur babies and plant babies knows no bounds, but when it comes to their health and safety, it's important to know the perimeters of plant toxicity to protect both our pets and our plants.
We spoke to experts to find out which indoor plants are safe for cats and dogs — and which ones aren't — so you can safely and responsibly bring home your next green addition.
Spider plants, (Chlorophytum comosum), also known as the airplane plant, spider ivy, and ribbon plant, is a popular houseplant that's both pet-safe and great for hanging up high so animals aren't as tempted by it. Spider plants are great for new plant parents because they are low maintenance, propagate easily, and are non-toxic to both cats and dogs.
Cast Iron Plants.This glossy plant (Aspidistra elatior) with a deep emerald shade is native to Japan and has a reputation for being nearly indestructible. This is the perfect option for those who spend more time with their furry pals than their green thumb.
Prayer plants (Calathea insignis) are ideal for the plant parent who likes a little color and unique patterns in their greenery. These popular houseplants are safe for both cats and dogs and fun to watch at night when their leaves move upward.
Boston Ferns. Like spider plants, Boston ferns (Nephrolepis exalta bostoniensis) make great hanging plants and thus perfect for keeping out of a pet's reach, although many cats may still get within reach — luckily, the two can safely co-exist.
Chinese Money Plants. With its unique appearance, this houseplant (Pilea peperomioides) — also known as the UFO plant or pancake plant — is a great addition to any home with pets. The self-propagator is easy to care for and adorable to look at (just like your fur babies).
The Rubber plant (Peperomia obtusifolia) — not to be confused with the rubber tree, which is toxic to pets — has glossy oversized leaves that look almost succulent-like. They're easy to grow indoors, especially in spots with bright natural light.
There are a handful of beloved houseplants that are known to be toxic to pets, including devil's ivy (Pothos), snake plants (Sansevieria trifasciata), Swiss cheese plants (Monstera deliciosa), and fiddle leaf figs (Ficus lyrata). While pothos are vining plants and can be placed high up or in a hanging planter to keep out of a pet's reach, it's always safer for your pet's health not to have these around.
Note that it is important to consider the scientific or botanical name of any plant you intend to use, as many plants have a number of colloquial names, which can lead to confusion.