10+ perennial plants and flowers that are not safe for dogs

As warm weather starts to come around for all of us in early spring, it’s important to know what plants are safe and not safe for our pups. When warm temperatures start hitting our homes, of course, we take our dogs and ourselves out for longer walks, trips to dog parks, and exploring fun hiking trails. As pet parents, we all know that puppies and even our older dogs tend to eat grass or sniff around plants outside. As for puppies, they will chew about anything. To make sure your furry friends stay safe, below you will find information on 10 perennial plants and flowers that are not safe for your dogs. 

In addition to 10+ perennial plants and flowers that are not safe for dogs, you will also find the following information in this blog:

  • Why do dogs eat plants and flowers?
  • 5 backyard plants and flowers that are safe for dogs
  • 5 non-toxic, indoor plants that are safe for dogs 
  • Other Common Outdoor plants for dogs to avoid

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If you suspect your dog has eaten poisonous plants, please reach out to your veterinarian immediately. You can also call a pet poison helpline. One to reach out to is the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center Phone Number: (888) 426-4435 if you suspect they ingested something toxic or poisonous to them.
dog sniffing flower

10 Perennial Plants and Flowers that are NOT safe for dogs

1 – Aloe Vera

This is a summer favorite for families to have around to help with those sunburns from the summer sun. For your dog, it’s toxic though. Aloe Vera can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and tremors in your dog if they get a hold of this plant. It’s a good idea to grab a bottle of aloe vera from the store and keep it in your medicine cabinet for those nasty burns vs planting aloe vera in your home, yard, or garden. 

2 – Chrysanthemum

I personally love these plants, sometimes also referred to as mums. They are a great front porch decoration and very popular in the fall time. Just be sure your dog stays away from them. If your dog decides to eat your mums, they will have a very upset stomach and could lose their coordination. Definitely don’t want a wobbly dog with an upset stomach!

3 – Dahlia

I personally love this flower too, it’s so beautiful in a bouquet or in a nice centerpiece for your table or kitchen island. Just don’t let your furry friend get a hold of its petals. If your dog eats the petals from the Dahlia they may experience mild tummy issues. Your dog also may experience dermatitis which means they will be incredibly itchy!

4 – Daisy

Whenever asked what my favorite flower is, I always say Daisy. I think it’s more because it has a pretty name than anything else. Gerbera daisies and blue-eyed African Daisies are pet-safe options. The Painted Daisy and Tiger Tail are very toxic to your dog and should be avoided. Of course, for most dog owners, telling the difference between flower species can be tough. Best to just avoid having your dog eat any Daisy.

5 – Iris

These beautiful gems can be found in fields and all over really. There are over 300 accepted species of this plant and Iris is the common name we think of for all 300+ species. They come in many different colors but be careful that your dog does not get one of these beauties in their tummies. Iris plants are toxic to dogs and can cause them to become lethargic, have a loss of coordination, excessive drooling, and vomiting.

Toxic flowers and plants for dogs

6 – Lily of the Valley

Kind of a cool name but definitely not a cool thing for your dog to eat. This bell-shaped wildflower flower is white with green leaves which make it a simple beauty and is often found in mountainous areas.  If you head out on a hike with your pet, be sure they don’t snack on one of these white flowers. Symptoms after a dog digest this plant could include vomiting, heart arrhythmias, liver failure, skin irritation, seizures, coma, and, ultimately, death. It’s a good idea to stay clear of Lillies. 

7 – MonksHood

I will be honest, I never heard of this plant before but when I did some research on it, I have seen it many times out in the fields driving on the highway. Another name for this plant is wolfsbane which is also a pretty cool name if you ask me. This plant is not only poisonous for dogs, but for humans too. And it’s extremely poisonous to both 2 legged and 4 legged friends. Eating it can cause weakness, heart arrhythmias, paralysis, tremors, and seizures.

8 – Peony

A beautiful flower in many wedding bouquets. It’s popular among the southerners and it’s known to symbolize good luck as well. Although very pretty, it won’t be pretty if your dog is vomiting after eating one of these. 

9 – Lavender

This purple beauty may have lots of benefits to humans such as its atomic smell, and is known to also reduce stress and chronic pain. Unfortunately, lavender is toxic to your furry friends. Your dog may experience vomiting, tender abdomen, difficulty breathing, reduced appetite, and fever if they get a hold of the lavender. 

10 – Forget-me-nots

This flower represents true love and respect. It’s also a favorite of mine that I sadly forget about too often but it has one of my favorite colors, light blue. This is a tricky one because not all species of forget-me-nots are toxic to dogs. But, best to be safe and not have your dog eat anything that looks like one either way. Your dog may experience weakness, vomiting, and diarrhea. 

11 – Carnations

Classic flowers for little kids to give as they are inexpensive flowers. Although they are still toxic to dogs, they are not as toxic as some of the previously mentioned perennials. If your pup decides to snatch your kiddo’s beautiful carnation he brought home for you, they will likely have a mild upset stomach. 

More toxic plants and flowers for dogs

Why do dogs eat plants and flowers? 

I found that Wes would eat a lot of plants, flowers, and grass as a puppy. It was more of him just getting into stuff than anything else. So if you have a puppy and they are always eating the beautiful flowers you just planted, it might be a behavior issue to address.

There are other reasons that you may find your four-legged friend eating plants that include:

  • Your Dog enjoys the taste: What can I say, some plants and flowers just taste good for our furry friends so it’s a treat for them.
  • Your Dog has a nutritional deficiency: There are thousands of different dog foods to choose from and unfortunately, not all are great for your dog or provide them with a complete nutritional meal. Be sure to always check the ingredients and look for fillers so you know your pup is getting all the nutrients they need. You can also have them take a multivitamin to be sure
  • Your dog is nauseous: It’s common for most pet owners to see their dogs chewing grass if they have an upset stomach. So if you see them nibbling on a flower, it might signal the same thing. Be sure to reach out to your vet if your dog is vomiting excessively. 
  • Your dog is curious or bored: Be sure to provide your puppy and energetic dogs with plenty of toys. Try these engaging ones to help if you have a dog who has a little more energy than you know what to do with. Dogs who have behavior problems or eat things they shouldn’t, like plants, might just be doing it out of boredom. 

5 backyard, non-toxic plants and flowers that are safe for dogs

Of course, we want fun and beautiful plants in our backyard so let’s take a look at some outdoor plants that are dog-safe. 

1- Basil

This fragrant herb is a great option for your own garden. It’s rich in antioxidants and can help humans with digestion and inflammation. Check out this fun basil plant for your home here.

2 – Honeysuckle

This plant is quick to grow and a great way to cover walls and fences. It also smells pretty good too! Plant your own honeysuckle.

3 – Marigolds

These flowers are easy to care for and are bright and colorful. An added benefit is that they are natural pest-repelling flowers, making them a great addition to any backyard garden. Plant your own Marigolds with this mix.

4 – Sunflowers

These happy plants will make a great addition to your backyard. They are also the perfect backdrop for photos! These are great sunflower seeds to plant in your backyard!

5 – Blueberries

A great fruit tree that provides a tasty and healthy snack for you and your furry friend. A bushel of blueberries for your home here.

safe flowers and plants for dogs

5 non-toxic, indoor plants that are safe for dogs

There are more than just these five house plants that are safe for your dog. But, I chose the ones that have fun names. 

1 – Polka-Dot Plant

It’s cute, little, and loves bright light. And it has fun, spotty pink or white leaves, hence its name polka-dot. You can have your very own pink polk a dog plant here.

2 – Boston Fern

A great choice for a room without a lot of sunlight. Boston Ferns love a shady spot but be sure to constantly mist them, it’s their favorite. Check out these two hanging boston ferns for your home.

3 – Prayer Plant

Watch out for the growth on this one, they can get pretty big. Be sure to place it where it will get lots of humidity and of course, it’s air purifying. Check out this local business that sells on amazon for a fun prayer plant for your home.

4 – Lipstick Plant

This is probably my favorite name for a plant. This is a hanging plant that loves humidity. A great place for it to hang out is in your bathroom. It’s also a great air-purifying plant for your home. Lipstick plant for your home office here.

5 – Banana Plant

A great air-purifying plant that also enjoys quite a bit of light. You can grab one here for your home.  

safe indoor plants for dogs

Other Common Outdoor plants to avoid 

Just to be safe – please be mindful of these common outdoor plants when walking with your dog.

  • American Holly, English Holly Japanese Holly, and Christmas Holly
  • English Ivy
  • Japanese Yew and English Yew
  • Fruit Trees such as crabapple and cherry
plants that all dogs should avoid


As dog owners, plants and flowers are going to be in many places in your dog’s life so be sure to know what is harmful to them. If you have a fenced yard with many plants and flowers, be sure to double-check what is back there if you leave your dog unattended. Especially a puppy. In my experience, best to never leave a puppy unattended as they tend to get into almost anything and everything! 

Be sure to stick to planting dog-friendly flowers when you are growing your garden and green thumb. When in doubt, if you don’t know if what your dog ate is a pet-friendly plant or flower, be sure to reach out to your vet or the poison control hotline for dogs. Be sure to take a picture of the flower or plant so you can send it to the vet or poison hotline to identify what it is.  As always, if your dog has difficulty breathing, severe vomiting, or any other symptom that is abnormal for them reach out to your nearest ER vet to ensure your dog is safe

Wes always liked to chew and eat the pansies that were planted around all our neighbor’s mailboxes on walks. Good thing these are safe flowers. Not a great thing for neighbors who wanted to keep the pansies though! 

Comment below on a favorite plant or flower of yours and your dogs!


  1. Informative post! Fantastic info for us non-owners who sometimes care for others’ furry friends.

  2. I did not know about these plants and flowers. I am saving this for future reference when I add plants/flowers to my garden. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Wow! I had no idea all of those flowers were toxic to dogs and I definitely have a few planted in my yard. I’ll have to be extra mindful when I let the dog hang out in the yard. She sometimes eats grass, so it wouldn’t be unusual for her to chew on a plant. And thanks for providing a list of safe options, too!

  4. What great information! I have 2 dogs at home and am just now getting into my obsession with plants around the house and in our backyard. I’ll definitely be cautious of excluding these toxic plants in and around my home now.

  5. Thank you for sharing such useful and helpful tips for dogs. Being a dog owner myself I will certainly review what’s around my house and on our walks to keep my dog safe.

  6. This is so helpful!! I hope and pray every day that our puppy doesn’t get into anything he shouldn’t in our backyard, but this is a great resource for when we want to do some decorating or landscaping in the future!

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