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Many pet owners think that keeping their pets inside the house will keep their pet safe from any kind of harm which is not totally true. Your pet is exposed to danger even if it is inside the house. Many people don’t know that the plants inside the house can be the reason behind damaging your pet’s health. Usually, dog owners take their dogs for a walk outside every day, which makes them prone to harm that is roaming in the neighborhood, whereas cat owners keep their cats inside because of a lot of reasons. But this does not make them any safer.
Cats usually have a habit of chewing plants inside the house and among cats; the most popular plant is spider plant. The plant itself is not poisonous for cats, but it can harm them if they graze it too much.
Cats are naturally curious animals and they like to explore things which can get them into trouble sometimes. They have a habit of exploring plants in the house. If you have a spider plant in your house, then it won’t cause any harm to us humans, but it can harm our feline friends.
One of the most common plants in every household is a spider plant. The plant itself is very easy to grow and does not take much space. The leaves of the plant are green and very greasy. Usually, these plants grow faster in areas where there is a bright light. Hanging them is the best option.
Here are 11 things that you need to know about spider plants and cats.
1. Source of entertainment
Cats love them as much as humans. Many people think because of the scent of the plant, cats are attracted to it but that’s not true. Spider plant does not emit a smell. But it actually spreads around the area, making a fun source of entertainment of animals in the house. So if you have a cat in the house, then it is very likely that the plant is one of its sources of entertainment.
2. Hallucinogenic effects
Spider plants are mildly hallucinogenic for cats. They don’t do anything to humans, but the chemical released by a spider plant can trigger some nerves in the cats causing some kind of fascination. It is like catnip that does the same thing, but the only difference is that catnip is not harmful to cats. A spider plant comes with its own dangers. Spider plant can be toxic for cats as it also releases poisonous chemicals that might be proven harmful if consumed in excess.
3. Expert advice
Spider plants are not that dangerous as you think they are. The hallucinogenic effect is not that harmful to cats. And according to the ASPCA, spider plant is not considered as toxic for any animal whether it is a dog, cat or any other pet around the house. The hallucinogenic effect of the spider plant or any other actual effect from any other thing can’t be considered harmful which is what ASPCA says.
However, the ASPCA also asks pet owners to be cautious as spider plant might not be toxic to cats, but it can do other damage to the cat and if not, then there are plenty other effects on the cat of the plant that are surely not very good. The lack of toxicity of the plant can’t be taken lightly because of some other unfortunate effects it causes. Moreover, the fact can’t be neglected that the chemical compound released by the spider plants is somewhat related to the one and only opium.
5. Other factors
The plant might have some hallucinogenic effects on your cat but the effects can’t be considered very strong. In fact, the effects are very mild and won’t affect the cat in a large way. The most it will do is make your cat’s behavior a little wild and energetic. This might sound comforting for those having spider plants and a cat in their house. But too much of something is also not good. In the same way, too much of this plant can actually have some alter the effects on your beloved cat.
It is advised to keep your feline friends away from the plant as much as possible. The chemical compounds having effects similar to opium can result in making your cat’s stomach really upset, which can cause severe diarrhea and vomiting. The symptoms are very easy to find. You can follow on your cat’s sickness by keeping an eye on the litter box. If the stool of the cat is watery then it is very likely that the spider plant has affected your cat.
7. When to visit a vet
This will not stop at watery stool. The cat will also feel immense pain during this stage and also your cat will feel tired all the time. Sometimes, people get confused with the symptoms and go to the vet for the wrong reasons. So always check the spider plant if it’s been chewed on before. This will tell you if the cat has chewed and then got sick to give you assurance for the reason of sickness. If you are fully sure that your cat got sick after eating it only then tell the vet about it because there can be hundreds of different reasons for your cat’s sickness.
There are a lot of ways to stop your cat from eating the spider plant. And you should be stopping them from eating it because of all the love and care you provide them as the plant can make them sick and have its own side effects on the cat. The first thing that you can do right now is hang the plant higher than its actual position. If the plant is hanged higher than it will become inaccessible to the cat.
9. Hanging the plant high
If you can’t hang it very high or don’t have much space to do so, then you can always try to put something on the leaves that taste nasty and is not really liked by cats. Try something bitter. Or you can replace the plant or distract the cat with other plants in the house. There are thousands of different plants or grass that are totally safe for cats. Also, try to position the alternate plants far from the spider plant so that the cat won’t go near it in any case. This will stop your cat from munching on the spider plant.
Pruning the plant can also help in preventing the cat from eating it. Cats like things that have extensions on it so that they can grab it or chew it. They think of it as playing. So if the plant’s growth has made it hang really low, then it is time to trim it a little.
For most, a spider plant might not be that harmful, but for others, it may result in violent continuous vomiting and distressed stomach. So it is better for a cat’s health to keep it away from the cat. It will avoid a lot of troubles because cats might not understand the harms that these plants are causing them so it is our responsibility to help them.