Are Air Plants Toxic to Cats: Here Are the Facts

Are air plants toxic to cats? You’re likely to ask this question if you want to grow air plants, yet you love cats. This article is specifically for you since it answers the question, are air plants toxic to cats? It also provides helpful insights into cat keeping while growing air plants. Therefore, read further for a comprehensive answer to the question, “are air plants toxic to cats?”

Cats are among the pets that most cherish, and you will find them in many homes. At the same time, air plants have become trendy for their ability to survive on air without a rooting system. While not everyone loves cats, those who love them do so for a range of rational reasons. For example, cats provide company to their owners, and this helps in preventing loneliness and boredom. Likewise, some people keep cats as a perfect solution to the problem of rodents.

Apart from keeping pets, some people like having houseplants. Houseplants come in a large variety, and what type one picks depends on personal preferences. For example, air plants are popular because of their low maintenance and care needs. They don’t require soil to grow and can thrive anywhere as long they can get nutrients and water.

But do people consider the fit between keeping a cat and growing houseplants like air plants? Very few do. Pets will interact with these plants daily, which can cause potential concerns. Besides worrying that your cat could destroy your air plants, consider the possibility of tillandsiacyanea being toxic to cats.

If the question ‘are air plants toxic to plants’ has never featured in your mind, it may be time to face it. Whether you own a cat or not, addressing this question can be helpful to you or someone else in the future. Also, you can learn about other houseplants like snow queen and marble queen pothos here.

Are Air Plants Toxic To Cats?- The Basics

Before you decide to have some air plants or tillandsias in your house, one crucial issue is whether you keep or have pets. These can be dogs, cats, or any other pet animal. If you keep reptiles, you should ask, “are air plants toxic to reptiles?” If you keep rabbits, you should ask, “are air plants toxic to rabbits?” If you keep birds, you should ask, “are air plants toxic to birds?” And if you own dogs, the question should be, “are air plants toxic to dogs?”

If you keep cats, which is the focus of this article, the issue of air plants and cat safety should be a top priority. You don’t want your cats to suffer any harm from these air plants. Most air plant varieties are safe for cats. And this should be a relief to most cat lovers. It means you can still keep your cats and enjoy the aesthetic appeal of tillandsias.

If air plants were toxic to cats, you would expect them to cause some harm to your favorite pet. Any poisonous plant would harm the cat, but the type and intensity would vary. Common symptoms to look out for when your cat consumes a toxic plant include vomiting, drooling, stomach pain, diarrhea, and weakness. In severe cases, it could cause death.

We tend to establish strong relationships with our favorite pets. The thought of your cat dying from eating some poisonous houseplant can be nerve-wracking for cat lovers. While you can replace the cat with another one, this cannot return your unique relationship with the dead cat.

Are Air Plants Toxic To Cats?- Tillandsias And Cats

Now that you have the answer to the question, ‘are air plants toxic to cats’ do you know the special relationship between these plants and cats? Cats are generally playful and play with almost anything, including air plants. Part of their playing includes nibbling. While this may not cause severe damage to your air plants, it requires careful interventions.

Please don’t look for non-toxic air plants for cats because we know they are not toxic. Whenever the question ‘are air plants toxic for cats?’ pops up, don’t panic. But explore potential air plant dangers for cats. Toxicity is only among the potential risks.

Consider a situation where your cat nibbles on your air plants. And while you are busy doing other things to take notice, the leaves chock the cat. No one would love seeing their cat choked since it would be uncomfortable and possibly painful. So, air plants and pet toxicity should not make you blind to other potential dangers.

While there are no genetic or spiritual connections between air plants and cats, the reality is that cats will always find and use them as some toy. They will play with them even when you are not around. Therefore, its reasonable to ask, “are air plants toxic to cats?” However, cats are somehow rational to know that nibbling on the leaves of these plants can cause choking and hence avoid them.

Are Air Plants Toxic to Cats?- Keeping Air Plants Safe For Cats

If you love your cat, you should do everything possible to ensure that your air plants do not harm them. To prevent any unexpected outcomes when your cat ingests the leaves of tillandsias or other plants that may be toxic, you can start by checking out air plant species safe for cats. But to save you all the effort, none of the over 400 species of these houseplants are toxic to cats.

Besides asking, “are air plants toxic to cats,” you may also search for non-toxic air plants for cats. And this is not bad, but you already know by now that it will only be futile since none of the air plant species are toxic to cats or other pets. And this should be a great relief if you love both. It doesn’t have to cause you a headache to decide which variety or species of the tillandsias to have.

So, how can you ensure that your cat does not choke from nibbling the tillandsias leaves or from ingesting other toxic plants growing together with the tillandsias? There is no magic bullet. The most important thing to do is keep the air plants away from the cats.

If your cat cannot reach the air plants, you eliminate the risk of nibbling and ingesting them. Thus, you won’t keep asking, “are air plants toxic to cats?” But cats can be very stubborn. If your cat is the type that keeps jumping and climbing every place, then this may be a challenge. Even with the challenge, here are some valuable tips to use:

  • Hang your tillandsias: You can hang your air plants at a higher place your cat cannot reach. And this may be on the ceiling, where you can use strings or wires to secure the plants. If it is in your garden, then tree branches can do the work. The idea is to ensure that the air plants are high enough that the cat cannot reach them.
  • Use a vivarium: You can also place your air plants in a glass vivarium/terrarium, which has several functions. First, the glass vivarium will prevent the cat from getting to the air plant. Second, it adds to the beauty of the air plants. Ensure that the vivarium has some ventilation and you place it where the cat cannot topple it.

When you do this, you won’t keep asking, “are air plants toxic to cats?” That’s because the pet won’t reach the plants.

Are Air Plants Toxic to Cats?- Things to Do if a Cat Nibbles on Air Plants

You may still be asking, are Tillandsia plants toxic to cats? In that case, pause and go back for a recap. But if you are on the right page, let’s move on. Air plants are not toxic to cats. However, there are still some air plant dangers for cats that you may need to address.

If your cat nibbles the leaves of your air plants, the first rule is not to despair. Despairing will only undermine your ability to act rationally and fast. Remember the guiding rule regarding the question, ‘are air plants toxic to cats.’ Ideally, you will not be saving the cat from poisoning-related harm. Instead, you will keep your beautiful plants from being ruined by your cat.

After checking the damage and ensuring that your air plant remains intact and can still survive, use appropriate tools like garden shears or scissors to cut off the damaged leaves. If it has a damaged leaf, only cut off the damaged part leaving the rest intact. Air plants depend on leaves for their survival. They absorb nutrients and water through these leaves. Therefore, you may wonder what happens when cats damage them besides asking, “are air plants toxic to cats?”

It’s time to move your air plant to a more secure place. The cat nibbled on the leaves because it could easily reach them. So, move the plant out of reach of the cat. And this may be a higher place or a terrarium. Finally, nurture and care for the plant. And if the question “are air plants hard to take care of?” lingers in your head, don’t fret because all you need to do is to provide enough water, nutrients, and light.

Are Air Plants Toxic to Cats? -What If They Poison the Cat for Real?

Still, on the critical question, “are air plants toxic to cats?” you may also experience a situation where your cat suffers actual poisoning. The poisoning is not from the air plant but from other toxic plants, you may be growing with your air plant. It may be difficult to tell which plant is responsible for the poisoning. But if your cat shows symptoms like vomiting, here are the essential actions to take.

  • Call your vet immediately and inform him about the incident. The idea is to explain everything clearly to the vet so he can give appropriate professional advice.
  • If there are still some leaves or parts of it in the cat’s mouth and throat, try to remove them by hand.
  • Make the cat drink quite a large quantity of water. And this may be challenging, but you can still manage it if you understand your cat well.
  • Let the cat rest as you check for any more symptoms or if the symptoms are getting worse. If they get worse, it’s time to take the cat to the vet or call the vet to your house.

So, instead of wasting more time asking, “are air plants toxic to cats?” Take these steps to save your cat if air plants poison it. You will keep your cat and enjoy more life with it.

Are Air Plants Toxic to Cats or Humans?

Now that you know air plants are not toxic to cats, you may wonder whether they are harmful to humans. This question is just as important as the one on air plants and pet toxicity. To begin with, you are the one who chooses to have air plants in your house or garden. The type of species that you pick will largely depend on you.

If air plants were toxic to humans, why would people still want to have them in their houses or gardens? A rational person cannot keep something poisonous or harmful near where it creates an immediate risk. Even if you consider pet-friendly air plant options for your house, the bottom line is that these houseplants are not toxic to humans.

But back to the question of “are air plants toxic to cats.” Would it make a difference if they were toxic to cats but not to humans? Would you still consider having air plants in your house where you still have your cat? Thankfully, you have already learned some crucial tips on how to keep air plant away from the cat. Therefore, stop asking, “are air plants toxic to cats?” Instead, get your air plants today!


The simple answer to the question “are air plants toxic to cats” is no. You will not find any toxic air plant species for cats. And this should be good news for pet lovers who love having houseplants, particularly air plants. But this does not mean your cat is entirely safe from air plants. The plant’s leaves could cause choking when the pet nibbles on it.

On the other hand, you should also consider your cat’s threat to the air plants. A cat can wreck your air plants. Since the plant is delicate, a cat can cut off the leaves or the entire plant. That is where the question of placing your air plants away from the cat arises. If a cat cannot reach the air plant, it cannot destroy it.

With the information you now have, you can help others who may be asking, “are air plants toxic to cats.” Learning is good. But it is even better to share what we learn.


Is air plant pet-safe?

This question is closely related to “are air plants toxic to cats” since cats are pets. An important consideration for people who choose to have air plants in their houses or gardens would be whether the plant is pet-safe. The simple answer is that all air plant species are pet-safe. They don’t pose any severe risks to pets.

Are any air plants toxic?

There are over 400 known species of air plants in the world. None of these is known to be toxic to humans or animals. That means you can have any species or variety of air plants in your house without worrying about toxicity to you, your family, or your pets. Also, this answers the question, are air plants toxic to cats?

How long do air plants live?

Air plants can live for many years in the right environment and with the proper care. While you can grow air plants indefinitely from a single plant, the typical air plant lives for between two and five years. The lifespan will be longer if the plant is of the proper type and with adequate care level.

Are tillandsias toxic to cats?

Tillandsiasis the other name for air plants. So the question is similar to that of “are air plants toxic to cats?” Tillandsias are not toxic to any animal, meaning they are not toxic to cats. You don’t have to worry that your cat could suffer poisoning from consuming the plant. But this doesn’t mean it is entirely risk-free for cats.

Where should I put my air plant?

You can put your air plant anywhere in your house or garden. Apart from ensuring enough light and air, consider putting the plant somewhere safe. That’s particularly the case if you have pets that may interfere with the plant. So, you can hang or place your air plant in a vivarium.

Henry Mugambi

Henry Mugambi

Take a look at this guy. He's almost in his 40s, but he looks like he could be in his 20s. That's because he's a gardener—and a damn good one, too. He's been gardening since he was a little kid, and he loves nothing more than sharing his tips with others. He started blogging a few years ago, and his blog has since become a go-to source for gardening information. His audience trusts him because he knows his stuff, and he always offers sound advice that helps people get the most out of their gardens.

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