Is Hoya Toxic to Cats?

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  • What is hoya?

    • Family: Apocynaceae
    • Botanical name: Hoya spp.
    • Common names: Wax plant, Waxflower, Porcelain flower, Hindu rope plant, Sweetheart Hoya
    • Toxicity: Non-toxic to cats
    • Toxic parts: None
    • Severity: N/A
    • Toxic principle: N/A

    Hoya is a genus of 200-300 evergreen epiphyte vines native to Asia and Australia. Its common name Wax Plant is due to its thick waxy leaves. The fragrant porcelain-like flowers grow in star-shaped clusters known as an umbel.

    Growing methods include indoor plants in pots, outside the plant can climb up trellis or trees.

    Common species

    • Hoya carnosa
    • Hoya Kerrii
    • Hoya brevialata
    • Hoya multiflora
    • Hoya Australis

    Is hoya toxic to cats?

    Hoya (wax plant) is non-toxic to cats. It is a safe indoor plant for humans and pets alike. No part of the plant is toxic if ingested.

    Toxicity class – how dangerous is it for my cat?

    Luckily, Hoyas are non-toxic.

    What happens if a cat eats a hoya plant?

    Your cat will likely be just fine if they ingest a part of a Hoya plant. Some cats will experience nausea and vomiting secondary to the ingestion of plant material, but this is not due to any toxic comment of the plant.

    How much would a cat need to eat to experience serious issues?

    Ingestion of any amount of Hoya will not cause toxicity, just be sure to monitor for gastrointestinal upset.

    What should I do if my cat eats a hoya plant?

    No immediate action needs to be taken given the non-toxic nature of the plant. I would move the plant somewhere inaccessible and monitor your cat for nausea or vomiting.

    Signs you need to see the vet / How can the vet help?

    You should seek veterinary advice if your cat vomits more than 3 times, stops eating, or seems lethargic.

    Could my cat die if they eat a hoya plant?

    Hoya plants will not cause death in cats.

    Prognosis

    Excellent! Most cats will be unaffected by Hoya ingestion.

    Should I keep hoyas if I have cats? How to keep them safely?

    Hoyas make wonderful houseplants, especially because they are easy to care for and non-toxic to pets. If your cat is a plant eater, it is still important to keep them out of reach to prevent trauma to your Hoya and tummy upset for your kitty.

    Other holiday plants that are poisonous to cats

    • Poinsettia
    • Lillies
    • Amaryllis
    • Holly
    • Mistletoe
    • Cyclamen

    Related content: Plants non-toxic to cats    Flowers non-toxic to cats

    Care

    Hoyas are easy to care for plant with average water needs and can be sensitive to over-watering. They prefer sandy well-drained soil and bright indirect light. Pests include scale insects, mealybugs and red spider mites. Fertilise every 1-2 during spring and summer.

    Safety

    While the hoya may be non-toxic to cats, fertilisers and pest control used on or around the plant may be potentially toxic. Ingestion of large volumes of hoya can potentially lead to a gastrointestinal obstruction but most cats seem to favour plants with strappy leaves and should leave hoya alone. If you do have a cat who is interested in eating the plant, consider moving it to another location the cat cannot access and bring in some cat-friendly plants such as catnip or cat grass.

    Frequently asked questions

    Is hoya a succulent?

    Hoya is a climbing vine and not a succulent, although its thick and fleshy leaves are similar to those of succulents. Due to it’s thick and waxy apperance it is often mislabeled as a succulent. These plants do enjoy bright light but do not like long dry periods like succulents do. They require regular waterings when the soil is dry.

    Can Hoya grow indoors?

    Yes, Hoya is a common houseplant. They are extremely easy to grow indoors. They prefer bright, indirect light and to dry between waterings. They are sensitive to excessive cold and drafts. They can also become sunburned if left in bright light.

    When does Hoya bloom?

    Hoya blooms from spring to late summer. Hoyas are known for being slow growing plants and many will not flower for over a year at a time.

    What is Hoya Compacta?

    This is a species also known as Hoya Hindu Rope that creates tightly bunched, rope like vines. It is a slow grower but can grow many feet in length. It’s unique appearance and easy care makes it an ideal indoor plant.

    Are all Hoya plants non-toxic?

    All true Hyoa plants are non-toxic to people and pets.

    What are the benefits of Hoya plants?

    Hoya plants are beautiful, come in diverse varieties, and have beautiful blooms. They are affordable, easy to keep, and grow robustly.

    Are Hoya flowers edible?

    Hoya nectar is sweet and edible. The plant is non-toxic but is not commonly used as a food source.

    Author

    • Julia Wilson is the founder of Cat-World, and has researched and written over 1,000 articles about cats. She is a cat expert with over 20 years of experience writing about a wide range of cat topics, with a special interest in cat health, welfare and preventative care. Julia lives in Sydney with her family, four cats and two dogs. Full author bio