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Plants That Are Toxic & Poisonous to Dogs: 15 Bad Plants + Safe Alternatives | Pupford

June 16th, 2023

Filed under Health + Wellness

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Have you ever wondered to yourself what plants are toxic & poisonous to dogs?

Whether you’re looking to bring a new dog into your family soon (yay!) or already have a four-legged family member (also yay!), there are always things pet parents can do to better prepare their home for their dog.

We get asked about that a lot, so we wanted to talk about one that can easily get overlooked.

Believe it or not, one of those things has nothing to do with the house at all, but rather the plants you have inside it or in your yard.

While it doesn’t happen often, it’s possible for a new puppy to find one of your houseplants during unsupervised exploring and think of it as something new and fun to chew on. The same thing could happen to an older dog who has access to a new area, is experiencing separation anxiety, or is introduced to a new plant.

Just in case that happens, you’ll want to make sure you don’t have any poisonous plants around that could cause your dog harm.

We’ve put together this guide to help dog parents make their homes and yards safer by knowing which plants are toxic for dogs (and some alternatives).

Related Reading: THC (Cannabis/Weed) & Dogs


In case you want a quick reference, feel free to print this list of toxic plants! You can also download the PDF here.

PLANTS That Are Toxic For Dogs Infographic | Pupford

15 Common Plants That Are Toxic to Dogs

aloe vera plants a plant that is toxic for dogs | Pupford

First, if you’re consulting this article because you think your dog consumed a toxic plant, stop reading and call your veterinarian immediately.

Let’s start by giving you a rundown of what plants are toxic to dogs.

Here are 15 plants commonly found in houses and yards that are poisonous to your dog (with a breakdown below) ⤵️

  1. Aloe Vera
  2. Bird of Paradise
  3. Cycas Revoluta (Sago Palm)
  4. Dieffenbachia
  5. Devil's Ivy
  6. Elephant Ear
  7. Ivy
  8. Jade
  9. Lilies
  10. Philodendron
  11. Sowbread
  12. Zamioculas Zamiifolia
  13. Chinese Evergreen
  14. Desert Rose
  15. Asparagus Fern

Now let's look at each plant more in-depth below. ⬇️

Aloe Vera - Toxic

aloe vera plant | Pupford

The juice and gel are safe for dogs (the gel makes a good topical treatment for skin irritations) but other parts of the aloe vera plant can cause diarrhea and vomiting.

Bird of Paradise - Toxic

bird of paradise | Pupford

This unique exotic plant gets its name from its resemblance to a tropical bird.

However, it can cause nausea, throwing up, and lethargy in your dog.

Cycas Revoluta (Sago Palm) - Toxic

cycas revoluta | Pupford

Also known as “Sago Palm,” this plant is popular for its exotic look. However, every part of this plant is dangerous for dogs!

It contains cycasin, which can cause vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and liver failure.

Dieffenbachia (also known as “Dumb Cane”) - Toxic

dieffenbachia or dumb cane | Pupford

This plant contains sharp oxalate crystals which will cause irritation, swelling, and burning of your dog's mouth.

Sometimes this is intense enough to make breathing difficult.

Devil’s Ivy aka Pothos - Toxic

devils ivy plant | Pupford

Similar to the Dumb Cane above, Devi’s Ivy contains oxalate crystals.

Elephant Ear - Toxic

elephant ear plant | Pupford

This plant is a favorite for its colorful leaves, but it contains calcium oxalate crystals that are toxic for dogs.

Ivy - Toxic

ivy plant covering brick wall | Pupford

Many varieties of ivy contain toxins that cause abdominal pain, vomiting, and excessive drooling.

If you’d like to have ivy in your house or yard, make sure to research the variety to make sure it’s safe.

Jade - Toxic

jade plants | Pupford

While Jade is great for humans because it lives long under a lot of circumstances, it’s not so great for dogs.

It can cause vomiting, slow heart, rate, and even depression.

Lilies - Toxic

lily plants |P

While the Lily family is quite large, many varieties are poisonous to dogs so it’s best to steer clear of them.

The Peace Lily is especially toxic for dogs.

Philodendron - Toxic

philodendron plant | Pupford

This is a common houseplant because it’s very low maintenance, but it also contains calcium oxalate crystals which are shown to irritate your dog’s mouth and cause swelling and burning of the tongue.

If severe enough, this can stop your dog from breathing.

Sowbread - Toxic

sowbread plant |P

This beautiful flower will brighten up your room, but it will also make your dog sick.

It can lead to excessive drooling, diarrhea, vomiting, and abnormal heartbeat.

Zamioculas Zamiifolia - Toxic

zamioculas zamiifolia | Pupford

Also known as the “ZZ Plant,” people love this plant for indoors since it thrives in low light.

However, it contains calcium oxalate crystals so it is dangerous to dogs.

Chinese Evergreen - Toxic

chinese evergreen |P

This is another green plant that doesn’t require much light.

But as a relative of the Peace Lily, this plant contains oxalate crystals and is dangerous for your dog.

Desert Rose - Toxic

desert rose plant | Pupford

These beautiful blooms contain a toxin called cardiac glycoside which, if consumed by your dog, can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, depression, irregular heartbeat, and death.

Asparagus Fern - Toxic

asparagus fern | Pupford

Although completely different in appearance, this plant is a relative of the Lily family and carries the same toxin.

In addition to causing vomiting and diarrhea if ingested, this plant can cause skin irritation if your dog is exposed to it.

NOTE: Keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list by any means, so you should always research your plants before bringing them into the house with dogs. For a full list of plants and their toxicity to different animals, see the ASPCA's list here.

Safe Alternatives to Toxic/Poisonous Plants for Dogs

spider plant is safe for dogs | Pupford

While this might seem like a lot of no-nos (especially if you read the full list), it doesn’t mean you can’t have plants in your home or yard at all if you have a dog.

There are plenty of safe alternatives to toxic plants for your puppy or dog -- here are some ⤵️

Haworthia - Safe

If you love the spiny look of the aloe vera plant, this alternative (also known as the Zebra Plant) is for you.

Swedish Ivy - Safe

This is one of the few safe varieties of ivies.

Christmas Cactus - Safe

If you like the round, plumb leaves of the jade plant, the Christmas Cactus is a good alternative that’s easy to care for.

Prayer Plant - Safe

This is a go-to for the variegated leaf look without the toxins.

Areca Plant - Safe

if you’re looking for a tropical vibe, the Areca is for you. It’s perfectly safe for dogs, yet sprouts palms up to six or seven feet!

The Parlor palm is a good option too.

Spider Plant - Safe

The Spider plant looks great in a hanging basket indoors or outdoors.

It’s easy to care for and contains no harmful toxins.

Money Tree - Safe

If you’re looking to spruce up an indoor space with a small tree, the Money Tree is a safe option that requires very little care.

Plus, it’s rumored to bring good luck!

Boston Fern - Safe

While you want to avoid many ferns, the Boston fern is completely safe for dogs.

African Violet - Safe

Get a beautiful pop of color in a poison-free way.

Moth or Phalaenopsis Orchids - Safe

If you’re looking for something a little more exotic but still safe, these beautiful flowers are a great choice.

Again, this is not an exhaustive list, so be sure to do your research when planting or moving into a new house with plants in the yard. When in doubt, call your vet -- as the cliche goes, you’re better safe than sorry.

Prepping Your Home For a Dog

brown dog sleeping on a couch | Pupford

If you’re going to be bringing a new dog into the house soon, make sure you take the time to prepare.

In terms of your house and yard plants, here are some simple steps you can take ⤵️

Identify All Plants

If you have any plants around your home and aren’t sure what they are, you can use one of these apps for identifying plants to help you!

Remove Any Plants That Are Toxic

Once you’ve identified your plants and researched whether or not they’re toxic, remove all the ones that are.

If the plant is planted in the ground, be sure to completely remove all roots so it doesn’t grow back.

Determine Your Dog’s Area

When you first bring a puppy home, you’ll want to restrict him or her to a small part of the house anyway, to promote training efforts and prevent destructive behavior.

Make sure that area is completely clear of any and all plants.

Even if the plants in your house are safe, it’s still a good idea to keep them out of your puppy’s site and smell whenever possible.

At the very least, it will save you from having to clean up a lot of messes -- but it could also help you save your pet’s life.

Once your dog is older, you can give your dog access to areas with plants. But in the beginning, be sure to monitor your dog and redirect any unwanted chewing on plants.

If you’re preparing your house for a new dog, here are 21 more puppy proofing tips you could use!

Recap of Plants That Are Toxic & Bad for Dogs

dog being pet by their human | Pupford

Making sure your home is free of toxic plants is an important part of being a pup parent!

Here is a list of 15 plants that are toxic for dogs one more time 👇

  1. Aloe Vera
  2. Bird of Paradise
  3. Cycas Revoluta (Sago Palm)
  4. Dieffenbachia
  5. Devil's Ivy
  6. Elephant Ear
  7. Ivy
  8. Jade
  9. Lilies
  10. Philodendron
  11. Sowbread
  12. Zamioculas Zamiifolia
  13. Chinese Evergreen
  14. Desert Rose
  15. Asparagus Fern

Do you have any other plants in your home that are safe for dogs?

Tell us in the comments below so we can update this article with the most common ones!


Of course, it's not just plants that can be dangerous for our pups! Check out 10 things that are toxic to dogs here!

Food can be a huge culprit of dog deaths and accidents, check out 20 foods dogs can and cannot eat here!

Someone common dog items seem fine but can actually be problematic. Learn about 7 dog items you should get rid of right now!


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