Playful paws and investigative noses mixed with the sweet smell of flower petals and juicy plants can sometimes be a recipe for disaster. While we want to display our favorite blooms and freshen up our spaces with verdant plants, we also want to keep our beloved pets safe from poisonous botanicals. What proves to be a threat to humans isn’t always harmful to animals, and vice versa. So, how can you be sure that your home garden or floral arrangements are non-toxic to your furry friends? Here at George’s Flowers, the best florist in Roanoke, we are committed to the environment, both plants and animals alike, and are happily sharing a tiny list of the best pet-friendly plants and flowers.
Safe Plants & Flowers for Pets
Spider plants offer long green, grassy leaves that a subtle yellow strip that proves to be entertaining to some cats and puppies. This hanging plant is also appropriately known as spider ivy, ribbon plant, or cat’s whiskers. Spider plants are fantastic options for homes because they are low maintenance and thrive best in bright indirect light. Although non-toxic to cats, be sure your feline friends don’t sneak too many nibbles from their leaves as it can upset their stomach or act as a hallucinogenic, similar to catnip.
Boston ferns grow fun, shaggy fonds that can entice playful animals and even temp them to chew. Fear not! This fern is non-toxic to cats and dogs, so they can bat the leaves or take a curious nibble without needing to see the vet. However, we don’t recommend you treat your Boston fern as a pet toy. These natural humidifiers are also brilliant hanging plants that require an abundance of bright indirect sunlight and water.
Sunflowers have proven to be a classic favorite from summer through the fall months, and nobody has to wonder why. Their large faces bring warmth and comfort that inspires happiness, positivity, and sunny days. Whether arranged in a vase that sits on your windowsill or planted outside in a flowerbed, sunflowers love to soak up the sun’s rays and appreciate fresh water daily. As they symbolize peace, these blooms will also bring you peace of mind when it comes to your furry pals, as they are a safe choice to have around pets.
Snapdragons grace us with their alluring presence from early spring through late fall and are safe to have around our fur babies. Their charming, tall, and pastel-colored petals are ideal for adding texture and height to any floral arrangement but can also be a sweet and lovely bloom to display on its own in a bud vase. Snapdragons thrive in full sunlight and are frost tolerant when planted in rich soil.
Orchids are the perfect blooming plant for any occasion and prove to be a fantastic gift for celebrating birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, Mother’s Day, a new life chapter, or “just because.” Better yet, orchids are pet-approved! As you admire their flowers for weeks, you can also soak in their powerful symbolism of love, elegance, good fortune, abundance, luxury, affection, and wealth.
Signs of Poisoning in Pets
Sometimes our pets can be a little too curious, nosey, or test the limits of our patience. Suppose you find your dog or cat has accidentally been exposed to a plant that is harmful or toxic to their system. In that case, they may display signs of poisoning, including lethargy, dehydration, vomiting, drooling, loss of appetite, or bleeding gums. Do not hesitate to call your trusted veterinarian, poison control, or take your pet to the nearest animal hospital as soon as you recognize these signs. For a comprehensive list of plants and flowers that are harmful and toxic to pets, please visit the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center website.
How to Protect your Pets from Toxic Plants & Flowers
While you begin to curate a safe collection of plants and flowers for your pet-friendly home, be mindful of where you display your pots and arrangements. Tops of tall dressers, high shelves, screened-in porches, or hanging pots are some of the best places for plants and flowers to live in your home. Here, your botanicals can grow without disruption, and your pets can safely play. For more pet-friendly flower and plant recommendations or to purchase your favorites, visit us at George’s Flowers.