With Mother’s Day approaching, do you know which pet-friendly flowers to choose for a bouquet – and which to avoid?

Some major retailers have cottoned on to the fact that lilies are a big no-no in pet homes, especially those with cats, and now offer a lily-free option, but there are other flowers and plants that can also pose a danger. What pet-friendly flowers can you include in your Mother’s Day bouquet gift? Emma Herring, from Webbox, has some advice…

What flowers are safe for dogs and cats?

Dogs are really part of the family, but this also means that they can often roam throughout the house and might be tempted to sniff or take a bite out of a flower arrangement. Additionally, our feline friends think they own the whole house, and they often creep into corners where we wouldn’t expect them. So, here are some pet-friendly flowers that you don’t need to worry about, as they are non-toxic and safe for pets.

Sunflowers

Beautiful, bright, pet-friendly flowers that always reminds people of spring and summer, sunflowers are a brilliant choice to include in a bouquet. With many different varieties, colours, and sizes of this plant available, you can find one to suit your desired aesthetic.

Stocks

Stocks are stunning, frilly flowers that come in shades of pink, white, and lilac. They are ideal for a frothy Mother’s Day bouquet, and as a bonus come with a wonderful scent.

Freesias

These flowers are available in lots of colours, including white, lilac, and yellow, and form a delicate highlight of any flower arrangement. So, add these to your gift to include some colour without worrying that your pets will come to harm.

Roses

The rose is a classic flower for special occasions and expressions of love, and is available in a wide variety of colours and sizes. This plant is safe for dogs and cats (especially as you can find thornless roses), and will be an excellent centrepiece for any bouquet.

Olive

To add extra interest in your bouquet with some beautiful foliage, you can use olive leaves and branches. These are safe for pets, and will add lovely shades of green to your flower combination.

What plants should you avoid?

It’s also useful to know which plants you should keep away from pets, so that you can check that your arrangement doesn’t contain any of these. If you are arranging your bouquet yourself, you can control exactly what goes into it, but many florists will cater to requests for pet-friendly flower arrangements. When you order your bouquet, speak to the florist ahead of time to make sure they are aware of what plants you should be including and excluding.

Some plants will cause irritation when they come into contact with skin, or tummy irritation when digested. However, some plants are more dangerous and can cause poisoning, especially if a dog or cat eats them by mistake. Symptoms can include digestive issues, skin irritations, or signs of discomfort from your pet.

Here are some common plants you’ll need to avoid:

  • Ruscus
  • September
  • Eucalyptus
  • Lavender
  • Peonies
  • Sweet William
  • Tulips
  • Delphinium
  • Clematis
  • Astrantia
  • Asparagus fern
  • Lilies
  • Solidago

 

“It can be tricky to find the perfect bouquet for a pet owner because many of the plants that are commonly used in arrangements can cause issues in both cats and dogs,” says Emma. “Some popular varieties of plants, like eucalyptus and asparagus fern, can be potentially deadly to both animals if ingested. But, by sticking to the non-toxic flowers and foliage that we’ve suggested above, you can create a beautiful Mother’s Day bouquet that your mum can enjoy without worrying about the potential effects on her dog or cat.

“When deciding which flowers to give as a gift, take the time to research each plant carefully, and inform the florist that the bouquet needs to be pet-safe. They will usually know which plants to use, and you can discuss your mum’s favourite flowers or suitable substitutes with them.

“To complete your Mother’s Day gift, add some pet treats or premium food for her dog or cat, so they’re included in the celebration. This should also help stop them from nibbling the bouquet you’ve carefully picked out!”

Further reading:

https://www.bloomandwild.com/pet-friendly

https://www.bluecross.org.uk/advice/pets/pet-friendly-garden

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