15 Houseplants That Won't Poison Pets

Public Domain. Stephanie Ho

Many houseplants are toxic for curious cats and dogs. These ones are all pet-friendly.

Houseplants do a house good. Not only do they look lovely, but the degree to which they promote health and wellness for a home's inhabitants is really quite remarkable. From increasing oxygen levels and helping deter illness to cleaning the air and promoting healing, they are silent workhouses giving their keepers a boost. (See more here: 5 health benefits of houseplants.)

Unfortunately, however, many houseplants can be toxic to pets – from mild irritation of the mouth to much grimmer (fatal) outcomes. The ASPCA has an epic database of plants that can be searched by pet and/or by the plant's toxic or non-toxic classification. It's a great tool to use when shopping for plants.

Since it can be a challenge to comb through all the toxic plants to find the pet-friendly gems, here are some to start with – favorites from the database that are all listed as non-toxic to cat and dogs.

1. African violet (Saintpaulia spp.)

African violet

Sonja McAllister/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

2. Areca Palm (Dypsis lutescens)

Areca palm in a pot

© Yongxi

3. Christmas cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesii)

Christmas cactus

Sean Benham/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

4. Creeping Charlie / Swedish ivy (Plectranthus australis)

Swedish ivy

W.carter/CC BY 2.0

5. Haworthia (Haworthia species)


stephen boisvert/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

6. Parlor palm (Chamaedorea elegans)

parlor palm

Pluume321/CC BY 2.0

7. Polka dot plant (Hypoestes phyllostachya)

polka dot plant

IP Singh/CC BY 2.0

8. Purple passion plant (Gynura aurantica)

purple velvet plant

NC Cooperative Extension Horticulture/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

9. Rubber Plant (Peperomia obtusifolia)

Rubber plant used as a houseplant

© Krittin Teerawittayaart

10. Spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

spider plant

© Isabel Sala Casteras

11. Staghorn fern (Platycerium bifurcatum)

Staghorn fern

Mokkie/CC BY 2.0

12. Tropical bromeliad (other cultivars)


Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 2.0

13. Venus Fly Trap (Dionaea muscipula)

venus flytrap

© Suwat wongkham

14. Watermelon peperomia (Peperomia argyreia)

watermelon peperomia

Mokkie/CC BY 2.0

15. Wax plant (Hoya carnosa 'krinkle kurl')

hoya carnosa

© David J. Stang

And of course, it's always a good idea to double check with your plant seller and/or veterinarian to be sure that your purchases will be kind to your pets. Visit the ASPCA for more images and info.