Are Pothos Plants Toxic to Cats? Find Out!

Are Pothos Plants Toxic to Cats

Last Updated on December 27, 2023 by Fumipets

Are Pothos Plants Toxic to Cats? Find Out!


Pothos plants, with their lush, trailing vines and easy-care reputation, are a popular choice among houseplant enthusiasts. However, for cat owners, the question of their pets’ safety around these plants is a crucial concern.

Pothos, also known as Devil’s Ivy, are indeed toxic to cats. They contain insoluble calcium oxalates, which can cause oral irritation, difficulty swallowing, and other gastrointestinal symptoms if ingested.

While these plants make for beautiful and low-maintenance additions to home decor, their potential harm to curious felines cannot be overlooked. In this introduction, we’ll delve into the specifics of what makes Pothos plants toxic to cats, the symptoms of poisoning, and how to keep your furry friends safe while enjoying the beauty of these popular houseplants.

Are Pothos Plants Toxic to Cats?

Because they are vibrant and green, pothos plants are frequently kept in homes to add color and life. They also aid in air purification, which is beneficial for everyone who lives there. Due to their minimal maintenance requirements and modest growth, these plants seldom require replanting in fresh, larger containers. These plants won’t work in every household, though.

Unfortunately, cats should not be near pothos plants. It’s important to ensure there are no Pothos plants in your home if you have even one pet cat. Let’s talk about what a pothos plant is specifically and why it is poisonous to cats.

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What Exactly Is a Pothos Plant?

Epipremnum aureum is the scientific name for the Pothos plant. Its capacity to tolerate hard conditions and tolerance to drought are the main reasons it is a frequent houseplant. The ability of this plant to develop without any natural sunlight is what makes it special. This plant may be kept in the center of a room or even in a garage where it won’t receive any sunshine.

The smooth leaves of a Pothos plant contain a waxy covering that can give them a fake appearance. The thick, sturdy leaves often resist the effects of the weather, remaining full and green. Not frequently do leaves turn brown or start to fall off the plant. The Jade and the Golden varieties of Pothos plants are among the available varieties. The leaves are entirely green, with little variances.

Why Are Pothos Plants Toxic to Cats?

Unfortunately, cats of all types, sizes, ages, and forms are toxic to pothos plants. Cats are poisoned by calcium oxalate crystals, which are present in both the stems and leaves of the plant. It is known that this material interferes with a cat’s ability to adequately digest food by affecting the soft tissues of the cat.

The chemical calcium oxalate crystals that this type of plant contains might induce tongue sensitivity that may influence your pet cat’s appetite and dietary intake even if it is not dangerous to a cat’s internal organs. In addition to respiratory issues, calcium oxalate can make you feel generally worn out. A cat that has been exposed to the poisons of a Pothos plant may die if the issue is not treated by a licensed veterinarian.

Signs and Symptoms of Pothos Plant Toxin Exposure

You should call your veterinarian right away if you notice your cat eating a Pathos plant since they might have hazardous side effects. Sometimes we can’t see when our cats are eating our plants, so we have to rely on the warning signs and symptoms of poisoning to catch the issue early.

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The signs and symptoms of Pothos plant toxicity include:

  • Mouth irritation
  • Mouth pawing
  • Lack of appetite
  • Lack of interest in drinking water
  • Excessive drooling
  • Whining or crying while eating, drinking, and swallowing

It is critical to arrange a checkup with the veterinarian as soon as possible if any of these symptoms appear. Your veterinarian might advise getting emergency care for your cat or bringing it in straight immediately for treatment. Alternatively, they could provide you with home cures to utilize up until their offices reopen.


Never keep pothos plants in a house with cats as pets. If they must be there, keep them out of the way with hanging pots and other items. Always keep an eye out for the warning signs and symptoms of Pathos plant poisoning. Fortunately, you may decorate your house with a wide variety of different cat-safe plants.

FAQs on Pothos Plants and Cat Safety


Why are Pothos plants toxic to cats?

Pothos plants contain insoluble calcium oxalates, which are sharp, microscopic crystals. When a cat chews or bites into the plant, these crystals can penetrate the tissues in the mouth and throat, leading to irritation and inflammation.


What symptoms should I look out for if my cat ingests Pothos?

Symptoms of Pothos ingestion in cats include drooling, pawing at the mouth, oral pain, decreased appetite, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing. If you notice these signs, it’s important to contact a veterinarian immediately.


How do I keep my Pothos plant away from my cat?

Keep Pothos plants in high, unreachable places. Hanging planters can be effective. You can also use cat deterrent sprays on the plant or create barriers to prevent access.


What should I do if my cat ingests part of a Pothos plant?

If your cat ingests Pothos, remove any plant material from their mouth and rinse their mouth gently with water. Then, consult a veterinarian as soon as possible for further advice and treatment.

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Are there any non-toxic alternatives to Pothos for cat owners?

Yes, there are many cat-safe houseplants you can choose instead of Pothos. Some non-toxic options include spider plants, Boston ferns, and certain types of palms, like parlor palms or areca palms.



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