Is Pilea Toxic to Cats?

Showing a pilea plant in a pot from top angle
A healthy Pilea plant (Source: Maxpixel)

It’s challenging enough to find a houseplant that fits your needs.

Especially, cat owners face an additional challenge as they require non-toxic plants because many kitties find indoor greenery irresistible.

Pilea, also called the Chinese plant, is famous for its belief that it brings good luck and fortune to the plant keeper and its non-toxic nature.

According to the ASPCA, the Pilea family includes a variety of plants, none of which are harmful to cats and other pets. However, it may induce minor stomach problems in cats when consumed excessively.

Healthy Pilea in a Pot
Healthy Pilea in a Pot (Source: Ubuy)

I dealt with numerous Pilea-related issues in my year on the Pilea plantation.

Let’s look into Pilea toxicity, what you can do to save a mauled plant after a pet attacks your lovely plant, and how to keep your pets away from them.

Is Pilea Toxic to your Cat?

Members of the genus Pilea are not poisonous to cats, dogs, other pets, or people.

Pilea is an excellent choice if you have a furry friend who likes to nibble on your houseplants or a little child who wants to explore the world with their mouth.

However, it is crucial to note that intake of any plant might induce gastrointestinal distress in pets.

If your cat or dog nibbled on your Pilea and got a sound bite, it could cause vomiting or diarrhea.

But, still, as a pet owner involved in plantation, you must have complete information about any probability of problems like:

  • Choking of leaves
  • Consumptions of fungal or bacterial infected leaves
  • Consumptions of digestive unfriendly plants

So, here is the list of various kinds of plants in the Pilea family that can cause multiple problems for your cats.

Common nameProblems
Pilea PeperomioidesIts large leaf can choke the cat when consumed.
Chinese PlantThough it is not toxic but is not the best consumable plant as it can cause indigestion
Dark mystery PileaIts rough texture leaf when consumed by a cat may cause irritation in the mouth

Symptoms of Eating Pilea in Cats

Since we have already discussed that Pilea is a non-toxic plant, the plant can still cause other problems other than poisoning, such as choking, indigestions, Vomiting, etc.

To be more precise, we have made a table of probable symptoms and methods of checking them.

SymptomsWay of checking them
VomitingYour cat will throw even without eating anything
DiarrheaFrequent pooping and mucus in stool
ChokingYour cat find difficult in breathing
Stomach crampYour cat licks the lips and moves uncomfortably

Though being a non-toxic plant, it is not the most compatible plant for cats to consume.

Hence, the cat may find it hard to consume, and the above-discussed problems may arise.

The symptoms mentioned above should go away once the plant’s content is removed from the system in healthy cats.

Consult a veterinarian right away if the cat does not feel better after a few hours.

Cat Undergoing through Treatment
Cat Undergoing through Treatment (Source: Hippopx)

The veterinarian may apply antiemetic or antispasmodic drug procedures efficiently in such situations.

Furthermore, chemicals found in pesticides and fertilizers may be one of the root causes of the sickness.

To help your veterinarian determine if this is the case, consider detailing your plant’s fertilization history to them.

How to Prevent your Cats from Eating Pilea?

Cats are curious and playful beings, so there’s no doubt that there might be an encounter between the cat and the plant.

As we have already discussed, even being a non-toxic plant can cause some harm to your cat.

Also, preventing your cats from near the plant is helpful to plant keepers to protect their plants from being a mess.

Hence here is the list of ways you can keep your cat and your plant safe from each other;

  • Keep the plant out of cat reach by hanging the plant.
  • Make it invisible from the surrounding your cat is indulged in.
  • Make the plant unattractive by spraying some repellant sprays.
Cat Repellent Spray
Cat Repellent Spray (Source: Amazon)
  • If you have Pilea outside, make careful you fence them in.
  • Another safe technique to keep cats away from plants is to keep them in a greenhouse.
  • Your cats don’t like the smell of plants like rosemary and lavender, so plant these plants near Pilea.
  • Cats despise the smell of citrus and peppermint oil. Use these to keep cats away from your Pilea.
  • Combine one tablespoon of lemon juice and one cup of water to make an essential herbal spray. The zesty scent of the lemon will keep the cats away from your Pilea.
  • You may keep cats away from Pilea by providing cat-friendly chewing grass in your home. Cat grass, basil, mint, catnip, lavender, and cat thyme are chewable plants.
A white cat is eating catgrass sitting on the floor
Cat eating cat grass (Source: Amazon)


Pilea is one of the most friendly indoor plants family due to the belief it carries.

Also, being one of the most beautiful non-toxic plants adds fragrance to the value of belief it carries.

So, I hope you have created a perfect framework for planting this plant at your home through this article.

And you have encountered in keeping both cat and the plant safe from each other.

Are you worried that your Pilea is dying? Read our post to learn how to keep your Pilea alive.

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