Pet Safe Plants: How to Keep Your Indoor Jungle Dog-Friendly
Ready for plant parenthood but not sure where to start? We chat with Kait at Fat Plant Farm about how to keep your indoor jungle dog-friendly.
Pet Safe Plants: A Cleaner, Greener, and Safer Home
Haven’t you heard? Plants are the new pets, and dogs are the new kids.
Plants help make houses feel like homes. They’re good for the planet, for us, and—provided we pick the right plants—our dogs, too.
If you’re ready to start your journey into plant parenthood, we’ve packed this post full of dog friendly plant options and tips to help keep everyone in your house—leaves or no leaves, fur or no fur—safe.
Are house plants poisonous to dogs?
Even if a plant is listed as pet safe plants, consumption of any plant material may cause vomiting or gut upset in dogs and cats. If you suspect your dog has been snacking on your houseplants and digging through the compost, contact your family vet or a 24-hour emergency poison hotline.
The ASPCA is an incredible resource for pet parents new to plant. Their toxic and non-toxic plant guide includes an alphabetized list of plants to pick or avoid depending on the critters in your home.
Some of our personal pet safe plants favourites include:
- Spider plant
- Christmas cactus
- Donkey’s tail
- Blue echeveria
- Gerbera daisy
- African violet
- Boston fern
- Phalaenopsis orchid
- Cast iron plant
- American rubber plant
- Parlor palm
A Q&A with pet safe plant expert, Kait Waugh of Fat Plant Farm
Kait Waugh knows plants better than anyone. After graduating with a degree in Plant Sciences, she took her love for plants to a new level with the launch of Fat Plant Farm in 2016. Based in Regina, Saskatchewan, Kait’s brick-and-mortar shop is every beautiful shade of green imaginable.
We caught up with Kait and her shop dog, Jet, to talk about how to keep your indoor jungle dog-friendly.
We love that you have a pet-friendly plant section on your website. What made you decide to add this?
Having a pet friendly plant section was important to us because we’ve found that plant and pet parenthood often overlap. Many of our customers (and our Fat Plant Farm team members) have both dogs and plants at home. Dedicating a space on our website to pet safe plants allows us to give our customers convenience and peace of mind.
What should a pet parent do before bringing home a new plant?
If you’re not sure whether your pet(s) are curious about houseplants, it’s best to choose a non-toxic plant. Next, select a plant that is suitable to your home’s lighting conditions. It’s really difficult to take care of a succulent or a cactus when there isn’t a single sunny window in your home. This is what we chat most about with plant parents when they visit our shop. Choosing the right pet safe plants for the right space helps determine whether you have a rewarding plant experience or a frustrating one.
Is there an “easy” dog friendly plant for pet parents starting out?
Yes! A Haworthia, aka Zebra Plant, is a drought-tolerant, slow-growing succulent type plant. What makes this plant universally easier to care for is that despite being a succulent, it tolerates bright, indirect light. Most homes offer this type of lighting, provided there’s a spot for your plant close to a window.
What pet safe plants would you pick for a pet parent with a green thumb?
A few options for invested pet safe plants for parents are ferns, String of Hearts and the Peperomia plant family. Ferns require more attention and do not like to dry out; they’re great for plant parents that like to check in with their plants every couple of days. String of Hearts is a cool trailing type succulent that appreciates hanging out near a sunny window. The Peperomia plant family has so many different varieties of pet-friendly plants that are all compact in size. Their thicker leaves classify them as semi-succulent. My personal favourite is the Peperomia Hope.
Tell us about Jet. What’s it like having a dog in your plant shop?
A few years ago my family and I decided to start fostering puppies with CC Rez Q’s, so the Fat Plant Farm shop has been home to a few furry guys. Jet was our 8th foster dog, the one that never ended up leaving the shop! He has such a friendly, easygoing temperament and took on the shop dog life effortlessly. Since Jet is surrounded by plants both in the shop and at home, we made sure to teach him that plants aren’t toys from a young age. (He’s more interested in destroying cardboard, anyway!) Now, we feel totally comfortable having Jet around plants, even those that aren’t considered pet safe plants.
Pet Safe Plants Herbs
Herbs may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about pet safe plants, but if you’re someone who loves to spend time in the kitchen and keep a fresh herb garden, they can’t be ignored.
We can all agree that herbs are packed full of flavour, but are they safe for your dog?
Safe for dogs:
Not safe for dogs:
- Green onion
If some of the herbs on the “not safe” list are in your garden, don’t worry—just be sure to keep them out of your dog’s reach. If you have an indoor herb garden keep them on a window sill that gets at least 4-5 hours of direct sunlight every day. For those of you with an outdoor herb garden, make sure to keep out of reach or safely fenced.
If you found this pet safe plants post helpful, subscribe to Waggle (e)Mail. We love sharing fun, easy, and effective ways to promote a healthy body, healthy mind, and healthy pet-parent bond with our pack members.
Dr. C. Beck
Registered Veterinarian, Founder & CEO