Are Roses Toxic To Cats?

Cats get into everything, as every cat owner knows. Whether its food left out, papers on the counter, or flowers on the table, your cat will find a way to get to it! If you’ve noticed your roses have teeth marks in them, you’re probably wondering if they’re safe. Are roses toxic to your cat?

Also Read: Are spider plants toxic for your cat?

Roses and Your Cat

While you might give your special guy or gal a rose to show them how much you care, maybe flowers aren’t the best thing for your kitty. In fact, most flowers are poisonous to cats. A flower as common as the lily is deadly! If the simple lily can harm your cat, then how can you be sure roses won’t when there are all different types you need to be concerned about?


Red Roses for Valentine’s

All of you ladies out there receiving roses can rejoice! Roses actually are not harmful to cats. If they eat the petals, your cat will be fine. The only issue is that roses have thorns, which many of us learned when we painfully grabbed the stem before thinking. Your cat can get scratched up by playing in rose bushes, and if they eat anything other than the petals, the thorns can give them an upset stomach. Any chemicals applied to the roses could also make them sick, but roses on your counter aren’t likely to cause any permanent damage. The best option would be to get de-thorned roses, which will cause no damage at all.

Also Read: What do I need to know about ivy and my cat?

Christmas Rose in December

If you’re into gardening roses, you probably have more than just the red rose lying around. These ornamental roses, which are more popular in Europe, are actually poisonous. They’re usually used for Christmas decorations, so don’t ruin your holiday by letting your cat eat them! If your cat does somehow manage to eat these, you’ll see stomach pain, diarrhea, drooling, and depression according to the ASPCA. Poison control or other emergency services will be your best bet in this case.

The Aptly Named Desert Rose

While known as a shrub, these roses can give you some beautiful white and purple flowers. They might look similar to the azalea, but they’re still poisonous! Usually these are in the yard, so keep your cat out of the yard if you’ve got some planted nearby.

Moss Roses are Easy

For those of you living in a dryer area, the moss rose is a fairly common plant. It can survive in drought, heat, and poor soil, so they’re easy to care for if you’re someone lacking a green thumb! They can be something as simple as ground cover, but keep your cats away from them.

Pretty Primrose

This plant is quite popular thanks to its beauty and variety of species. It grows with ease and can even be harvested for medicinal oil. This oil might be good for humans, although it’s very toxic for cats and may cause them to start vomiting.

Rosebay’s to Landscape

Also known as the rhododendron, the rosebay is sadly poisonous. It’s a little discouraging to find that all these varieties of the rose are poisonous, especially with this popular landscaping plant, but if you keep your cat inside, you shouldn’t have any issues with them chewing on the leaves.

Rose of Sharon for Sharon

Those women out there named Sharon probably have heard about this plant at some point in their life (my mother certainly has!), but did you also know that this plant is poisonous to cats? These beautiful plants can be blue, pink, red, lavender, or white. The beauty hides the danger however, so keep your cat away!

Stop Chewing the Roses!

Just because you have a cat, it doesn’t mean that you can’t have roses with thorns or different species of roses. One of the best tricks out there for keeping your cat away is to stop your vase from tipping over. Just place Sticky Paws or other sticky removable substance around the base. Usually cats don’t like the strange sticky feeling and will start to avoid the vase. After only a few tries, your cat won’t even go near it anymore.

To be safe though, make sure you recognize the signs of possible poisoning. Your cat will end up feeling ill, with stomach pain, diarrhea, and possibly depression too. Either get them to the vet fast or run to poison control to help them before it gets worse.

Can I Keep Flowers at all?

For any plant, you should visit the ASPCA website to make sure that it’s not toxic to your cat. Sadly sticky paper doesn’t always work, and it only takes one mistake for your poor cat to get sick accidentally. If you’re really worried then, there are a couple cat-friendly bouquets you can make simply in your own home. Oregano, lavender, sage, and rosemary can make a wonderful herbal bouquet and can be nibbled in small doses without causing any damage. Don’t worry if you have an herb garden in your kitchen then, but always remember to check with ASPCA before introducing a new plant into your home!


Flowers of all different kinds are considered safe or unsafe for cats depending on what types of flowers they are. Even the simple rose, which includes all kinds of species, can be poisonous if it’s the wrong kind! No matter what kind of flower it is though, your cat will find a way to get into it, so be sure to check up on it before picking out that vase.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *