Non-toxic plants

Are American Rubber Plants or Pepper Faces Toxic For Cats?

by Clair Chesterman
Is American Rubber Plant or Pepper Face Toxic For Cats

The American rubber plant is safe for cats. The plant is listed by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Poison Control Center as non-toxic for dogs, cats, and horses.

The American rubber plant is an excellent houseplant since it is not only non-toxic to cats but also eliminates pollutants from the air. All you need is some strong sunlight, frequent watering, and a container big enough for a four-foot-tall tree.

You should not confuse the American rubber plant with Ficus benjamina, commonly known as the weeping fig or Indian rubber plant. This is a different plant under a different plant family group. Ficus benjamina contains toxic properties that are harmful to cats, dogs, and horses.

Can Cats Eat American Rubber Plant or Pepper Face?

Baby Rubber Plant and a cat nearby

While most plants from the Peperomia genus are non-toxic to your feline companions, it is highly discouraged to let your cats eat large amounts of an American rubber plant.

If swallowed, the American rubber plant can cause some pain in cats and kittens. However, if the plant is consumed in big quantities, your cat may experience nausea and vomiting.

This might cause gastrointestinal problems, inflammation of the mouth, and problems in the upper airways and stomach. If your cat has nibbled on an American Rubber plant, don’t worry. After the feline vomits up the foreign particles, the symptoms and pain normally go away.

What is American Rubber Plant or Pepper Face?

American Rubber Plant and cats

The American rubber plant, also commonly called pepper face, baby rubber plant, and oval-leaf Peperomia is a pepper family Piperaceae flowering plant. This lovely succulent houseplant is native to Mexico, Florida, and the Caribbean, and it has received the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit.

Scientifically known as peperomia obtusifolia, the American rubber plant is an evergreen perennial with succulent, leathery leaves and spikes of green-white flowers.

The American rubber plant produces fleshy leaves and plants with variegated foliage thus, making them a popular choice as houseplants.

It produces little white flowers on spikes and has heart-shaped leaves that grow slowly but are quite lovely. It is delicate and will not tolerate frigid conditions; offer light, partial shade, and water just as needed.

Keeping Cats Away From American Rubber Plant or Pepper Face

American Rubber Plant and a cat nearby

Peperomia obtusifolia are widely cultivated as indoor plants. If you have one at home, it is ideal to put it in a place where your cat cannot reach it. You can also try building plant terrariums to fully prevent your cat from accessing your plants at home.

Limiting your cat’s outdoor access will also keep them away from your neighbor’s plants and poisonous plants that are growing outside.

Plants to Avoid For Your Cats

If you are a cat owner and unsure if the plants growing in your yard are harmful to your cats, check out this list of toxic plants for cats. You can also view our list of non-toxic plants for cats.

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