How to keep pets away from plants
There are a few simple ways to protect your cats and dogs from plants that are considered toxic or dangerous to them. If your pets persist, you can check out some of our pet-safe indoor plant suggestions, too.
Know What Plants Are Toxic to Pets
The first step in protecting your beloved four-legged friends from dangerous plants is knowing which of them are considered toxic. Before making a purchase, make sure to do your research to find pet-safe indoor plants.
If you already have both pets and plants in your home, it is still a good idea to read up on each species you already have. It is better to be safe than sorry.
Some plants that are considered toxic for animals include:
These are just a few plants to avoid if you have curious furry friends. To be sure about a plant, search for it specifically.
Keep Toxic Plants Out of Reach
If you have indoor plants considered toxic to animals, the first thing to do is move them out of reach.
For dogs specifically, this can mean placing the toxic houseplant up on a high shelf that your dog cannot reach. In the case of cats, you may need to move the toxic houseplant to a room your cat does not go into or avoids.
Larger toxic plants, like those grown outdoors, can be blocked off with the use of fencing. Unfortunately, this may not solve the problem if your animals like to jump over fences.
If your four-legged friend still finds a way to your toxic houseplants, try using a form of repellent. There are many kinds available, and most store-bought repellents can be found in a spray.
There are also a few home remedies you can try. For example, blood meal is commonly used as an animal deterrent. This should be used with caution, because it can act as a fertilizer for your greenery. Before you use blood meal as a repellent, do some research on the effects it can have on your houseplants.
It is also possible to use citrus peels as a natural deterrent. Cats and dogs are not thought to enjoy the smell of citrus peels like grapefruit, orange, lemon, or lime. Even better, the citrus scent is reactivated every time you water your houseplant. The peels also act as a fertilizer for your plant!
Cover Toxic Houseplants or Place Them in a Decorative Holder
A more unconventional solution to keeping your toxic houseplants out of reach is to enclose them. By covering your houseplant with or placing it inside a decorative holder, you will essentially be protecting it and your pet!
Try placing a glass case over your houseplant, or try placing your plant in a glass container, similar to a fishbowl. Either option is protective and decorative! This will keep a safety barrier between your leafy friend and your curious pets. This method is also a great way to hone in on your creative side!
Look for Signs of Ingestion
Think your cat or dog may have ingested a toxic plant? Here’s what to look for and what to do.
Dog poisoning symptoms include loss of appetite, throwing up, lethargy, and coughing or drooling. Skin contact can cause rashes or blisters, which can lead to licking and an irritation of the lips, tongue, and throat.
In cats, look for redness, swelling, or itchiness in the mouth or on the skin, and watch for more serious conditions like difficulty breathing or swallowing, drooling, vomiting, excessive drinking and urinating, and diarrhea. You should also listen for an irregular heartbeat.
If you recognize any of these symptoms in your animals, call a vet or the ASPCA poison control center.
Remove Toxic Plants from Your House
Sometimes (unfortunately), there’s no way around it. Persistently curious pets might refuse to take the hint. If this is the case, and none of the other methods are working for you, the final step is to remove the dangerous plants from your house.
Sometimes there’s no way around this sad solution. On the upside, however, not all houseplants are considered toxic to animals. There are plenty of harmless indoor plants you can invest in.
Some pet-friendly plants to have around your furry friends include:
There are several ways to protect your plants from your pets or your pets from your plants. Sadly, if those don’t work, you’ll have to remove the toxic plants from your home. The bright side? There are plenty of pet-friendly indoor plants that are safe to have around your furry friends!