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Is Neon Pothos Toxic To Cats?

Is Neon Pothos Toxic To Cats?

When it comes to pothos plants there are an almost endless amount of types that you can buy with neon pothos being one of the more popular options, but is neon pothos toxic to cats?

Unfortunately, neon pothos is toxic to cats. This is due to the presence of calcium oxalate crystals in the leaves and stems of pothos plants, and if your cat ingests part of your neon pothos you should contact a vet as soon as possible.

What Is Neon Pothos?

Neon pothos, also known as Epipremnum aureum neon, is a variety of golden pothos – the most common type of pothos plant.

Neon pothos is known for having no variegation (where the leaves contain different colors) and instead has bright ‘neon’ leaves that are yellow in color.

Neon pothos on a white background
A vine of neon pothos

Once you see a neon pothos it’s quite easy to see where the name comes from.

Why Neon Pothos Can Cause Problems For Your Cat

Neon pothos contains calcium oxalate crystals that are insoluble.

Cats are quite curious by nature, and if they decide to take a bite out of your neon pothos you should contact your vet immediately. If you suspect that your cat has taken a bite out of your neon pothos there are several symptoms you can look out for that will help to confirm this:

  • Mouth irritation
  • Excessive drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Difficulty Swallowing

You should also be aware that pothos leaves can be a choking hazard for your cat if they try to swallow a larger leaf.

Are All Varieties Of Pothos Toxic To Cats?

Neon pothos is not the only type of pothos that is toxic to cats, as all pothos species contain the same calcium oxalate crystals that are toxic to cats.

So if you’re like me and own a golden pothos, or if you have a rarer type such as the Harlequin you still need to be cautious of it around your cat.

What About Dogs?

Pothos are also toxic to dogs, but luckily it’s a lot easier to keep them out of reach when compared to a cat.

The symptoms are very similar for dogs, and if you become concerned you should always contact a vet.

Keeping Cats And Pothos At The Same Time

It’s a personal decision to keep a pothos at the same time as owning a cat, but you should be aware of the problems that it can cause.

Some cats show little to no interest in plants, while others are the opposite. Given how many plants are toxic to cats it’s difficult to protect them from every single type, especially if you have a cat that goes outdoors.

Indoor cats, on the other hand, can be kept away from toxic plants like pothos easily. I’ve listed a few tips below for keeping your cats safe with pothos around if you decide to keep yours.

Keep It Out Of Reach

Placing your neon pothos in an area of the house where your cat isn’t allowed or can’t get to is a great way to protect your cat.

High shelves or bedrooms that are closed during the day make for great places to ensure your neon pothos is hard to reach for your cat. Keep in mind that pothos can grow very quickly given the right conditions, so if you keep yours on a shelve it will quickly grow towards the floor if you let it.

Consider Your Cats Behavior

Some cats show no interest in plants whatsoever, and if your cat is similar to this you can consider keeping your neon pothos.

This does require quite a bit of trust, however, so I would only recommend this if you’ve had your cat for quite a few years and if you’ve seen them around other plants before.

The Bottom Line

Neon pothos, and any other type of pothos, should ideally not be kept in your house if you own cats.

It is a personal decision, however, and lots of people have had no issues with it. If you trust your cat and can keep the pothos out of reach then you should be fine, but you should always be informed of the risks associated with the plant.

Pothos Alternatives For Cats

There are some great alternatives to pothos that are completely safe for cats.

If you’ve made the decision to replace your pothos – or not get one in the first place – the plants below are options for giving that houseplant vibe to your space without having to worry about your cat.

Peperomia

Peperomia look quite similar to pothos and are also super easy to care for.

A peperomia plant next to a window

They’re also completely safe to keep with cats, and there are lots of varieties if you want something a bit different. They’ll thrive in full or partial sun exposure and generous humidity, especially in the summer months.

Spider Plant

Everybody loves a spider plant, and for good reason.

A spider plant on a navy blue desk

Not only do they complement just about any space, but they’re very hardy plants and completely non-toxic to cats.

Spider plants prefer partial or shaded areas, similarly to pothos, and prefer warm and humid environments to cold ones.