A Warning to Pet Parents: Aloe Is Toxic to Cats!

Aloe is a beloved house plant thanks to its health benefits, but cat parents must be aware that aloe is toxic to cats. Learn about the signs of aloe poisoning and what to do if your cat ingests it.

Aloe vera is a common household plant known for its numerous health benefits and medicinal properties. As such, it’s a popular choice for an indoor plant. However, if you have a feline friend at home, you’ve probably wondered if aloe is toxic to cats. Let’s find out!

Aloe Is Toxic to Cats: Signs of Aloe Poisoning

Aloe vera is a succulent plant that belongs to the Liliaceae family. People use it to treat sunburn, promote digestion, and soothe dry skin. However, for cats, the aloe plant has saponins that can be bad for the digestive system. Additionally, aloe contains anthraquinones. When cats ingest anthraquinones, they might experience:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy
  • Tremors
  • Depression
  • Loss of appetite

Generally, small amounts of aloe skin or gel won’t harm your cat. But aloe is toxic to cats if your kitty eats a lot of it.

What to Do if Your Cat Eats Aloe

If you suspect that your cat has ingested aloe, here’s what to do:

  1. Monitor your cat’s health for symptoms of poisoning for a full day.
  2. Remove the aloe or leaves from your cat’s reach to prevent further ingestion.
  3. If you notice residue stuck in their teeth, gently clean their mouth with a damp cloth.
  4. Contact your veterinarian or an emergency vet clinic immediately for professional advice if your cat shows symptoms of poisoning.

What to Expect When You Talk to the Veterinarian

Tell the vet that your cat has ingested aloe and describe their symptoms. The vet may suggest inducing vomiting or bringing your feline friend in for an examination and treatment. You may even have to take a sample of the aloe plant with you. Depending on the severity of the symptoms, your vet may also recommend hospitalization with IV fluids and medications.

Safe Alternatives to Aloe Vera

As pet parents, it’s our responsibility to ensure our homes are safe for our dogs and cats, including keeping them away from toxic plants. A non-toxic alternative to aloe is haworthia, an easy-to-grow succulent that’s also called zebra cactus. It has a similar appearance to aloe.

Aloe isn’t the only possible danger lurking in your home. Many plants we love are dangerous for dogs and cats, including mistletoe, ivy, sago palm, pothos, and lilies. If you want to keep a toxic plant at home, keep it out of your cat’s reach. You can also consider keeping the plant in a separate room or using a plant stand.


Animal Wellness

Animal Wellness is North America\’s top natural health and lifestyle magazine for dogs and cats, with a readership of over one million every year. AW features articles by some of the most renowned experts in the pet industry, with topics ranging from diet and health related issues, to articles on training, fitness and emotional well being.

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