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Are Bromeliads Toxic to Cats? What You Need to Know!

cat sniffing Aechmea bromeliads plant

No. Bromeliads plants are non-toxic to cats. All the different houseplants in the bromeliad family are harmless to cats and even dogs. Cat owners can breathe a sigh of relief since their furry friends sometimes graze on houseplants or grass. However, despite the plant being non-toxic to cats and other pets, you must be careful to prevent your kittens from spending too much time around the plants.

Kittens usually tend to chew bromeliad leaves, and though not poisonous, it can make them sick since the kitten could be allergic to the plant. Or else, they can choke on the leaves, which may lead to a severe condition such as suffocation.

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How to Protect Your Bromeliads from Your Cats

You need to protect your bromeliads from your cats for the best interest of your plant and its growth. Besides your kitten chewing the plants and getting sick, other challenges may come from growing and breeding.

Your bromeliad pot might be at risk with your pet around since cats like to hop around, thus knocking things over. In addition, the pet digging through the pot may, in the process, uproot the roots of the bromeliad, causing the plant to die.

Here are some tips that can help you protect your bromeliad plants from your pets:
  • Make use of a spray bottle on your cat whenever it gets near the bromeliad. Consistently doing this will prevent your cat from getting close to the plant.
  • Repellant sprays can also be very helpful. Just spray your bromeliad plant, and your cat will be nowhere near your pot. However, avoid using vinegar since this can harm your plant.
  • You can put pebble stones in your bromeliad pot but let there be enough space for soil to be watered. That will prevent your cats from digging through your soil.
  • Consider placing your plants out of the reach of your cat.
woman spraying Bromeliad Guzmania plant
Image Credit: Milenova Elena, Shutterstock

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Houseplants That Are Safe and Non-Toxic for Cats

Like humans, cats seem to enjoy the sights and scents of flora. Cats’ love for nature may often include chewing plants or using them as an occasional alternative to the litter box. Luckily, there are several common houseplants, succulents, or greenery that cats can live with peacefully.

They include:

Spider Plants

Spider Plant on a wooden table
Image Credit: Bozhena Melnyk, Shutterstock

These plants thrive easily indoors, adapt well to the vases you put them in and survive with little sunlight. They come in various varieties, all of which are non-poisonous to cats and need little care to keep them alive.

Their spider-like leaves, sprouting from a central root in the ground, attract some feline friends to explore, eat or chew them. However, if that is a problem, try hanging them out of reach of your kitty.


African Violets

African Violets
Image Credit: AnitaBozic, Pixabay

These plants are more demanding in terms of sunlight and water than spider plants, but they come in a range of attractive flower colors. Although African violets are considered non-poisonous to cats, they are usually grown in tiny pots that curious felines can easily knock over. To help avoid a mess, find a larger, heavier pot and increase the bottom weight to prevent your kitty from spreading soil into your carpet unhelpfully.


True Palms

potted parlor palm
Image Credit: Wheatfieldstock, Shutterstock

Most of these big flowerhead plants, including Parlor, Areca, and Ponytail varieties, are perfect for outdoors with warm climates. If you opt to keep palms inside your house around cats, you must first ensure the variety can thrive indoors.

Second, make sure they don’t have Cycad or Sago in the name. If they have, those are not actual palms. Sago palms are a species of Cycad, and they are very toxic to cats and dogs.


Succulents

succulent plant
Image Credit: leoleobobeo, Pixabay

Be keen when choosing your succulent variety to bring to a home with a kitty. Varieties such as aloe vera, jade, and kalanchoe are poisonous to cats. However, Haworthia and burro’s tail are non-toxic varieties.


Swedish Ivy

Swedish Ivy plant
Image Credit: vjgalaxy, Pixabay

Just like succulents, be careful when choosing your ivy varieties. English ivy, which is the most common variety, is toxic to cats and, if eaten, can lead to vomiting, drooling, diarrhea, or abdominal pain.

Devil’s ivy, also known as pothos, is also poisonous to both cats and dogs. When ingested, the leaves produce a burst of tiny calcium oxalate crystals with needle-like shapes. These irritate the mouth and the throat and can lead to breathing difficulties.

However, Swedish ivy is non-toxic, and it is easy to care for with suitable soil and little bright light.

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Houseplants That Are Toxic to Cats

Although bromeliads are not toxic to your cats, you may be propagating houseplants alongside bromeliads, which might harm your cat or dog. Here are some houseplants pet owners need to keep away from cats.

Lilies

Tiger lily plants
Image Credit: AndreaGibhardt, Pixabay

These attractive blooms commonly found in bouquets or growing in the garden can be extremely harmful to cats. They are such a common threat to cat owners.

Here are some lilies that have been identified to be particularly toxic:
  • Asiatic lily, such as hybrids
  • Easter lily
  • Daylily
  • Rubrum lily
  • Japanese show lily
  • Wood lily
  • Stargazer lily
  • Tiger lily

Although vets are unsure which toxin in lilies leads to poisoning in cats, exposure to this plant’s flower, leaves, pollen, or water from the pot may lead to acute kidney failure. Exposure to only two or three leaves or flowers calls for an immediate visit to the vet since delaying treatment for more than 18 hours may lead to permanent kidney failure.

sick cat
Image Credit: one photo, Shutterstock

However, some lilies may be less poisonous but are still harmful and can cause irritation to the mouth, tongue, or throat.

These lilies include:
  • Peruvian lilies
  • Calla lilies
  • Peace lilies

If your kitty has eaten a lily, but you are not sure what type, it is recommended to take a picture of the flower and get in touch with your vet for identification and possible treatment for poisoning.

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Final Thoughts

It is always advisable to study the nature of the houseplant you want to grow, as these will help you weigh the pros and cons of propagating the plant. In studying the plant, you will understand if it is toxic to your feline friends and whether it contains allergens that may affect you or your children.


Featured Image Credit: Alexmalexra, Shutterstock

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