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Living With Pets And Plants


Adding plants is a great way to spruce up your home, but if you share your home with a dog or cat, you’ll want to choose your indoor flora carefully. The leaves, seeds, berries and bulbs of some common plants can be poisonous to pets.


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Many flowers, such as hyacinth, oleander and hydrangea, can cause stomach irritation when ingested by your cat or dog. Wisteria, lily of the valley, morning glory and narcissus are other common plants that have poisonous parts such as seeds, pods, roots, bulbs or flowers.

Vegetable and fruit gardens should also be managed carefully. The leaves of rhubarb, shoots of potatoes and seeds of apples can be poisonous to dogs and cats. Try planting beets, honeydew melon or zucchini squash, none of which pose a threat to pets.

Tuberous plants make an attractive fresh-cut arrangement indoors. While some members of the tuberous family are poisonous, such as iris and lilies, others are safe when handled intelligently. For example, as long as the bulbs are discarded, tulips, daffodils and buttercups are an attractive, safe way to bring nature inside.

In the spring, consider planting impatiens, sunflowers or petunias, since they are safe and will add color and beauty to your outdoor space. Avoid azaleas, primroses or geraniums, which are poisonous to dogs and cats.

During winter, many people decorate with seasonal plants, but be careful: cats and dogs should stay away from holly and mistletoe—both of which contain poisonous berries—and English ivy and poinsettia plants, whose leaves, flowers and stems are toxic.




Living With Pets And Plants:  Created on November 3rd, 2011.  Last Modified on January 21st, 2014


About IEHA


The International Executive Housekeepers Association (IEHA) is a 3,200-plus member organization for housekeeping management. Executive housekeepers are managers that direct housekeeping programs in commercial, industrial or institutional facilities, including upscale hotels, hospitals, schools, and other public places. The non-profit was founded in 1930 in New York City, and is now located in Westerville, Ohio, a suburb of the state’s capitol.