Houseplants That Are Dangerous For Your Dog

A dog sits on a chair surrounded by houseplants that will not harm him if he eats one. Learn about what houseplants are dangerous for your furry friend.

If you look on Instagram under any of the hashtags pertaining to homes and home decor, you’re bound to come across that wonderful boho-chic look that turns your home into a mini greenhouse with loads of plants. Terrariums are trendy. Either way, many of us may love the aesthetic of plants in our houses or apartments, so we go a little crazy on that front. Of course, if we have pets, we also have to be conscious that we’re purchasing plants that won’t be harmful to them. So, as pet owners, before we go out and go crazy buying all the plants, it’s essential to get familiar with the ones that may be toxic to our pets. 


The Lily family of plants is very expansive. But some plants are downright lethal to our dogs and cats. The Mauna Loa, which also goes by the name Peace Lily, is toxic to dogs and cats, while the Stargazer and Easter Lilies are toxic only to cats as it affects their appetite and kidneys and can be fatal. Meanwhile, the Peace Lily is harmful to both cats and dogs and can present symptoms of vomiting. They can also experience trouble swallowing due to irritation on the lip and tongue.

Are Lilies Poisonous to Dogs?

Not all Lily varieties are, but it’s a good idea to steer clear of them both indoors and outdoors.

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats a Lily?

Call your veterinarian right away to see how quickly they can see your pup and treat it. If you cannot see them in person, they will recommend at-home treatments.

Aloe Vera

You would think that Aloe Vera wouldn’t make a list since it’s such a great plant for us humans when we have burns. However, it’s that specific gel substance – the one we humans find so soothing on our skin – that is very harmful to our dogs. If they ingest it, their digestive systems can be harmed.

Are Aloe Vera Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

The level of toxicity is mild to moderate.

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats an Aloe Vera?

Call your vet immediately for their advice on how to proceed. Treatment options will be dependent on how much was ingested.

Ivy (Hedera Helix)

We’ve all heard of Poison Ivy and make efforts to avoid it. However, even regular Ivy can be toxic to our dogs. If they ingest standard Ivy, they can develop rash and breathing problems. And things can get even worse as Ivy has been known to lead to coma or paralysis.

Are Ivy Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, if ingested, it can lead to breathing problems.

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats an Ivy Plant?

Go to your veterinarian or animal hospital right away.

Jade Plant (Crassula Ovata)

The Jade plant has many names like Jade Tree, Dwarf Rubber Plant, Chinese or Japanese Rubber Plant, Friendship Tree, and Baby Jade. Regardless of what you may know, it’s essential to know that it should be kept away from dogs and cats. No one knows for sure what toxins are in this plant, but what is known is that any dog or cat that ingests Jade can end up developing the following symptoms: vomiting, incoordination (ataxia), a slow heart rate (bradycardia), and depression.

Are Jade Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, Jade plants are poisonous to dogs.

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats a Jade Plant?

Reach out to your veterinarian immediately if your dog eats a jade plant.

Asparagus Fern

This plant is harmful to both dogs and cats. The plant also goes by other names such as Emerald Fern, Emerald Feather, Sprengeri Fern, Lace Fern, and Plumosa Fern. This specific fern contains a toxin called Sapogenin, and if the berries are eaten, your pet can experience diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and skin inflammation.

Are Asparagus Fern Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, asparagus ferns are poisonous to dogs.

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats an Asparagus Fern?

Rinse the mouth with clean water, and clean any skin that has come into contact with the plant. Call your vet, too. Your dog might appreciate an ice cube to help with swelling and pain in the mouth (depending on what your vet says).

Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia)

Dieffenbachia, also known as Dumb Cane, Tropic Snow, Exotica, is poisonous to cats and dogs. This dangerous plant can make it challenging to swallow, increase salivation, vomiting, and burning/swelling of the mouth and tongue if ingested. In some cases, dogs have experienced trouble breathing and, sadly, even death.

Are Dumb Cane Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, Dumb Cane plants are poisonous to your pets.

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats a Dumb Cane?

Contact your animal care center.

Elephant Ear (Caladium)

This easily recognizable plant is also known as Via Sori, Taro, Cape, Malanga, or Ape. If your dog eats one of these, the side effects are similar to the Dumb Cane. Difficulty swallowing, vomiting, and increased saliva.

Are Elephant Ear Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes. Elephant Ear plants are poisonous.

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats an Elephant Ear?

Call your veterinarian immediately or take your dog to the animal hospital.

ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas)

The Zamioculcas plant is an eye-catching shape and beautiful for any home but should be kept in a room that your furry friend does not have access to. If consumed, your dog will experience vomiting or diarrhea.

Are ZZ Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes they are poisonous to humans and dogs.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a ZZ Plant?

Check the mouth and remove any remaining plant, help them drink water, watch out for more severe symptoms.

Sowbread (Cyclamen)

The Sowbread has pretty blooms that will brighten your home. However, this flowering plant is toxic for both dogs and cats. The side effects of swallowing this flower are diarrhea, vomiting, increased salivation/drooling, seizures, and abnormal heartbeat. There have been severe cases where pets have died from eating Cyclamen.

Are Sowbread Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, they are highly poisonous to pets.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a Sowbread Plant?

Take to your veterinarian immediately for an IV to prevent dehydration.

Corn Plant

The Corn Plant contains steroidal saponin compounds, which are dangerous for dogs and cats. When this plant is digested, the main symptom is vomiting, sometimes accompanied by blood. Try putting a Money Tree plant in your home as an alternative.

Are Corn Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, corn plants are poisonous for dogs.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a Corn Plant?

Remove any plant that might be left in the mouth to avoid choking. Do not induce vomiting unless your veterinarian has recommended it, and they might ask you to come in.

Desert Rose

The Desert Rose is known for its timeworn trunk and bright, gorgeous blooming flowers. This flowering plant contains a toxin called glycoside, which, if swallowed, can cause symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, depression, irregular heartbeat, and sometimes death. An alternative plant to own would be the African Violet.

Are Desert Rose Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, Desert Roses are poisonous.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a Desert Rose Plant?

If you believe your dog ate or even licked the plant, go to the veterinarian’s office immediately.

Bird of Paradise

Your dog might find this delicate house plant appealing. However, if your furry friend decides to take a bite, you can plan for your pup to experience nausea, vomiting, and drowsiness.

Are Bird of Paradise Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, your Bird of Paradise plant is dangerous to your dog.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a Bird of Paradise Plant?

You should take your dog to the veterinarian or animal hospital right away.

Chinese Evergreen

The Chinese Evergreen plant is easy to grow if you have a room with little light. However, the greenery on this houseplant is not easy on your pup. Like the Peace lily, the Chinese Evergreen also contains calcium oxalate crystals that can cause swelling, vomiting, oral irritation, difficulty swallowing, and breathing.

Are Chinese Evergreen Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, if digested or coming into contact with fluids from the plant.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a Chinese Evergreen Plant?

Call your veterinarian and ask to be seen immediately.

A man and his pup sit on the sofa in their new home. There are dangerous houseplants that can harm your pup if you do not take preventative measures.


This low-maintenance plant is popular, but if your dog eats the leaf, the mouth can get irritated and cause severe swelling and burning of the tongue and mouth. It’s scarce, but sometimes oral irritation can lead to breathing difficulties and sometimes death.

Are Philodendron Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, Philodendrons are poisonous to your pup.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a Philodendron Plant?

You can begin with flushing out your dog’s mouth with water then calling your vet for further recommendations.


This hard-to-kill houseplant will give your pup the same side effects as the Philodendron. Tiny, sharp calcium oxalate crystals, which are contained in the leaves, can irritate the mouth, such as severe swelling and burning. Rarely, the irritations can lead to breathing problems and death.

Are Pothos Plants Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, although they are very popular plants, they are poisonous to dogs.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a Pothos Plant?

Contact your veterinarian.

Sago Palm

The Sago Palm will give your home an exotic feel. However, every inch of the palm is poisonous to cats and dogs. This toxic houseplant has made the top terrible toxin list for Pet Poison’s Helpline. If ingested, your pet could experience vomiting, diarrhea, and sometimes seizures, lethargy, and liver failure.

Are Sago Palms Poisonous to Dogs?

Yes, and keep in mind the seed is most toxic.

What Happens If My Dog Eats a Sago Palm?

Contact your vet or pet poison control immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions About Toxic Houseplants

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats a Poisonous Plant?

If you believe your furry friend has ingested a poisonous plant, you should call your veterinarian immediately to give their expert advice on how to proceed.

What Plants Are Not Toxic for Dogs?

Many houseplants are safe for your pets, and most toxic plants have a safe alternative that is attractive and adds color to your home. Spider plants, money trees, African violets, prayer plants, and inch plants are just a few of the recommended varieties for plant lovers to add to their homes.

How Do I Keep Dogs Out of Houseplants?

The most effective way to keep your plants safe from your dog is to train them that your plants are not a toy and exercise often to combat boredom. Make sure to keep plenty of toys they are allowed to play with. Some other tips to keep them away are spreading coffee grounds on the top of the soil, and the smell keeps them away and is an excellent fertilizer. Positive reinforcement is a perfect tool for all areas of training your pup.

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