Are Croton Plants Toxic to Cats? What Do I Do If They Eat One

Croton is a common name for a flowering plant that is often used as an ornament. Croton is also the name of a group of flowering plants that are all in the same family. Croton plants are liked for their colourful leaves and unique shapes, but cats can’t eat them because they are poisonous.

Croton Toxicity

The croton plant (Codiaeum variegatum) is poisonous to cats in all of its forms. This includes all the different kinds, such as Banana, Bush on Fire, Eleanor Roosevelt, Oakleaf, Magnificent, Sunny, Gold Sun, Mammy, Petra Croton, and Zanzibar.

A chemical called 5-deoxyingenol is in the croton. Animals can get sick from it, and it is in the roots, flowers, stems, and leaves. Humans can get contact dermatitis from the milky sap, and children can die from eating the berries that the plant makes.

Symptoms of Croton Poisoning

If your cat eats part of a croton plant, their mouth will swell and they will start to drool. Among the other signs:
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy
  • Depression
  • Lethargy
If you think your cat may have come in contact with a croton, you must take it to a vet right away.

How to Keep Your Cat Safe

The good news is that cats usually won't eat the croton plant because it tastes bitter. So, even if your cat tries to chew on a piece, it's possible that the disgusting taste will make them regret their decision. Still, since prevention is better than treatment, you should keep your croton plant away from your brave cat.

But if you want to be sure, there are many other beautiful indoor plants that cats can't hurt:


Image Credit: MartinPhotography, Pixabay
Haworthia is a type of succulent plant that looks like aloe. It looks a bit like a cactus, but without the thorns, because its leaves are long and pointed. This plant is also easy to care for, just like succulents. It needs a little water and a lot of indirect light. It looks great on a display shelf or in the corner of your desk.


Image Credit: PublicDomainPictures, Pixabay
The fern is a classic and is safe for all of your animals with four legs. Also, it goes with any style of decorating. Just changing the pot will make it look completely different.


Image Credit: Veronicatxoxo, Pixabay
Since a few years ago, these have been showing up on Pinterest boards, and we can see why! Succulents are colourful, easy to take care of, and very pretty. They are also safe for kittens.

Spider plant

Image Credit: Bozhena Melnyk, Shutterstock
 The spider plant is a common ornament. It is safe for your beloved cat to hang in a planter or sit on top of kitchen cabinets. Also, these plants are unique in that they have “babies” very quickly, so you will get more than one plant for the price of one! 
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African violet

Image Credit: Peggychoucair, Pixabay
The African violet is a lovely plant with leaves that are shaped like domes and brightly coloured flowers. It’s perfect for giving a piece of furniture or a corner that needs a little love a little shine.

Other Toxic Houseplants

Besides crotons, there are many other plants that can hurt or kill your cat.
  • Aloe vera
  • Amaryllia
  • Azaleas
  • Cherries for Christmas
  • Growing corn
  • Daffodils
  • Dumb cane
  • Jade plant, elephant ear, English ivy
  • Lilies
  • PhilodendronPoinsettia
  • Sago palms
  • Tulips
Cats can get sick from other common houseplants and garden plants that aren't on this list. Before buying a plant, the best way to stay safe is to talk to your vet or check the ASPCA database for safe and poisonous plants.

Last Thought

 Croton plants are poisonous to cats, and eating them can cause irritation in the mouth and stomach. Most of the time, these reactions are mild and short-lived. But if your pet shows signs like vomiting, diarrhoea, drooling, or irritated skin, you should call your vet or the Pet Poison Helpline right away. 
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Princy Hoang
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