Houseplants help keep a home beautiful but can be dangerous for Yorkies.

You’re so happy to have your Yorkie home. They check out the house, their bed and food of course! But then they sniff your house plants – and takes a nibble! Oh, no! Is that plant toxic?

You want to make your Yorkies’ surroundings safe but you like plants and the  indoor greenery they provide too. So what’s harmless and what’s not?

Although any indoor plant may make your pup sick if they eat too much of it, there are some popular houseplants that cause more serious issues with even a small bite.

Poisonous houseplants for Yorkies

Several common houseplants that are toxic to dogs include:

  • Aloe Vera – This plant is used so often to treat irritated skin, it’s hard to believe it’s toxic. But the gel contained in its succulent leaves is only safe when used topically. If eaten, it causes diarrhea, vomiting, depression, and anorexia.
  • Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane) – If eaten, calcium oxalate crystals found in all parts of the plant burn the mouth and tongue, causing swelling and breathing difficulties.
  • Philodendron – Philodendron leaves and stems contain the same calcium oxalate crystals that cause swelling and burning of the mouth and throat as well as digestive problems and sometimes seizures.
  • Sago palm – Not a true palm, the sago is toxic from top to bottom, including roots, seeds, and leaves. Symptoms are vomiting, diarrhea, and possibly liver damage.
  • Dracaena (corn plant) – Although harmless to humans, the corn plant contains saponins that can cause problems for pets. Symptoms are vomiting and diarrhea, appetite loss, weakness, and excessive drooling.
  • Asparagus fern – The fluffy fronds of the asparagus fern cause abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea when eaten – and may also irritate your pup’s skin when touched.
  • Rubber plant – The sap inside the Ficus rubber plant irritates the mouth and gastrointestinal tract, causing drooling and loss of appetite. The sap also irritates the skin.

Pet-Friendly plants for Your Yorkies

So what plants are definitely non-toxic? Some that are common, easy to find in most plant stores and pet-friendly are:

  • Spider plant or airplane plant (Chlorophytum)
  • African violets (Saintpaulia)
  • Swedish ivy (Plectranthus)
  • Christmas cactus, Thanksgiving cactus or crab-claw cactus (Zygocactus)
  • Radiator plant or peperomia (Peperomia)
  • Prayer plant or arrowroot (Maranta)
  • Boston fern or sword fern (Nephrolepis)

To protect your pet while keeping your plants, place planters on tabletops, window sills, or high shelves. Large containers that stand on the floor should be tall enough to be out of reach of a pup’s climb or jump. Or keep plants in rooms inaccessible to your pet.

Avoid putting the pots on tablecloths or cloth runners that your pup can pull, potentially bringing the plants crashing to the floor within reach of curious mouths.

Some dogs hate the smell of cloves or cayenne pepper, so sprinkling some on the soil or plant may help. And always have your veterinarian’s contact information handy, just in case. Another good resource for plant information is

For more tips on keeping your Yorkie happy and healthy, contact us today.

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