Last Updated on October 20, 2021 by Julia Wilson
Is Thanksgiving toxic to cats?
Thanksgiving cactus (Schlumbergera truncate) is non-toxic to cats.
What is Thanksgiving cactus?
- Origin: Brazil
- Botanical name: Schlumbergera truncate
- Common names: Thanksgiving cactus, False Christmas cactus, Crab cactus, Holiday cactus
- Toxicity: Non-toxic to cats
Thanksgiving cactus is a popular tropical cactus native to Brasil that blooms around Thanksgiving. In the wild, Schlumbergera species grow on the surface of tree branches (epiphytes) in rain forests.
Schlumbergera produces small, serrated, segmented flat stems (known as phylloclades) which grow out in a characteristic arch which it a crab-like appearance and makes them the perfect hanging plant. Flowers grow in a variety of colours including red, rose, purple, lavender, peach, orange, cream, and white.
Thanksgiving cactus can be grown outdoors in warm climates but unlike other succulents, it prefers to grow in partial shade.
Are Thanksgiving cactus and Christmas cactus the same?
Thanksgiving and Christmas cactus are not the same, although it is easy to confuse the two as they both boom later in the year and have a similar appearance. Thanksgiving cactus has 2-4 saw-toothed serrations (claws) along the margins and the Christmas cactus has rounded serrations (scallops).
While Thanksgiving cactus is non-toxic to cats, fertilisers and pest repellents used on or around the plant may be potentially toxic.
Toxic and non-toxic Christmas plants
Cats can’t differentiate toxic plants from non-toxic plants and poisoning can occur. Kittens are particularly at risk due to their curious nature. The level of toxicity can vary from mild to life-threatening.
Do your homework before you bring plants and cut flowers into the home so that your cats stay safe.
|Mild to moderate|
|Mistletoe||Phoradendron flavescens, Phoradendron
serotinum and Viscum album
|Mild to moderate|
|Hippeastrum||Hippeastrum spp.||Mild to severe|
|Norway spruce||Picea abies||Non-toxic|
|Blue spruce||Picea pungens||Non-toxic|
|Serbian spruce||Picea omorika||Non-toxic|
|White spruce||Picea glauca||Non-toxic|
|Nordmann fir||Abies nordmanniana||Non-toxic|
|Fraser fir||Abies fraseri||Non-toxic|
|Douglas fir||Pseudotsuga menziesii||Non-toxic|
|Noble fir||Abies procera||Non-toxic|
|Balsam fir, Canaan fir||Abies balsamea||Non-toxic|
|Grand fir||Abies grandis||Non-toxic|