Dogs in particular who spend a lot of time in closed rooms or indoor cats can quickly get bored and then like to nibble on the plants or play with the leaves.
Animals that are outdoors or have a lot of free roaming are usually not interested in the plants in the garden and the surrounding area, as they are offered much more variety.
Even birds that fly freely like to peck at a plant every now and then.
You may be familiar with a few garden plants that are poisonous to pets, such as azaleas, tulips, oleander and amaryllis, but some succulents can be just as dangerous.
Make sure you have a pet first aid kit at home. Always handy, should something unexpected happen to your pet.
Aloe Vera – Healing or Toxic?
Pets are not recommended to nibble or peck at an aloe vera.
Oral ingestion of an ingredient in aloe vera and leaf skin, alonin and sapinin, can lead to cramps, paralysis and severe irritation of the mouth, throat and digestive tract.
Diarrhea in particular often occurs in many pets after eating. It is therefore toxic.
However, when used externally, its ingredients are also beneficial for pets.
The purified aloe vera juice offered in the drugstore, for example, can also be fed without problems and is said to have positive effects on the health of the animals. So it also has a healing effect.
The Alternative to Aloe Vera: Haworthia
Instead of Aloe vera, you can use safer succulents, such as the haworthia also known as zebra plant. It looks just as soft and spiky, but without the risks.
Are There Any Other Succulents That Are Not Recommended for Pets?
Of course you have to look to what extent your pet is interested in plants, otherwise, all of them are of course possible. Safe is safe though.
Other slightly to severely poisonous succulents are:
- Madagascar palm (Pachypodium) – Milky sap is highly toxic, thorns pose a risk of injury
- Pencil cactus (Euphorbia tirucalli) – The cactus gives off a white colored sap that can cause skin irritation in both humans and dogs. Eating it can irritate the lining of your mouth, esophagus, and stomach and lead to nausea and vomiting.
- Crown of Thorns (Euphorbia milii), has many thorns and an unpleasant taste. It is therefore usually not eaten by dogs. It shares the same white sap as the Pencil Cactus that can cause rashes.
- Some kalanchoes contain cardiac glycosides, which are very toxic to cats, especially if consumed. The same goes for rodents and rabbits. In contrast, the plant is less toxic to dogs.
- Adenium, the desert rose, is a dog poison plant and is therefore one of the most poisonous plants. The consequences are vomiting, diarrhea, depression and an irregular heartbeat or sometimes even the death of your dog.
- Sansevieria, the bow hemp is slightly toxic for humans and their four-legged companions.
- Crassula ovata, also called the jade plant, is a popular succulent because it is almost impossible to destroy and can live for up to 100 years. But it is also poisonous to dogs and, in addition to vomiting and a low heart rate, can also cause a more difficult symptom to diagnose: depression.
- Silver dollar, eating the plant can cause vomiting and nausea. It can also cause tremors, although this side effect is relatively rare.
- String of pearls (Senecio rowleyanus) – can cause lethargy, upset stomach, drooling, vomiting, and diarrhea when eaten. Also called string of beads, it is a creeping succulent vine.
Symptoms to Look Out for
If your dog or cat has any of the following symptoms, take your pet to the vet immediately.
- Inability to eat or drink
Which Succulents Are Safe for Dogs, Cats and Other Pets?
There is hardly a genus of plants that can be generally recommended as harmless because it is non-toxic. However, you are usually on the safe side with:
- Porcelain flowers / hoyas
- Flaming katy (Kalanchoe blossfeldiana)
- Christmas cacti
- For other indoor plants, palms, ferns, and green lilies are considered harmless.
Keep Your Pet Safe and Happy
If you keep succulents, make sure they are out of reach of your pets.
You can avoid potential dangers to your dog by keeping poisonous succulents in a hard-to-reach place. If your dog manages to eat a succulent, call one of the animal poison control numbers to see if treatment is needed.
We hope the above guide has helped you in understanding which succulents are toxic to pets and which are not. If you’re looking to buy succulents, be sure to check out Succulent Alley where they list the best place to buy succulents online.