If you have succulents and rabbits at home, you may wonder whether it is a right combination, and whether your beloved pets cannot get sick from eating the plants. Another interesting question is whether your plants won’t die because of your rabbits enjoying their leaves for dinner… There are actually many types of succulents, and some of them are poisonous.
Succulents that fall under the Euphorbia family are succulents that are known for being poisonous, and are the ones you should avoid at all costs, as long as your pets can come into contact with them. They are easy to recognize, however, since they have white sap on their leaves which can irritate human skin, and it can be irritating for animals also. If ingested, it can irritate your stomach and mouth and sometimes may cause vomiting.
Are rabbits safe with these succulents?
Rabbits love to gaze on juicy grasses while they are roaming around their place. The good news is that rabbits usually don’t eat succulents. But if they did, some types of succulent may be poisonous to them.
As a rule of a thumb, you should avoid growing such succulents when you have rabbits. Look, more often than not nothing will happen. But I am sure the last thing you want to think about while on holiday is whether your lovely rabbits aren’t eating your beautiful succulents and harming themselves in the process… Let’s have a look at the succulents that are particularly dangerous.
Pencil cactus (Euphorbia)
Pencil cactus is a toxic plant that may cause immediate pain when ingested. This plant is toxic to human beings and to other living organisms because of its milky substance that may lead to gastrointestinal and dermal injury. It is a nice cactus to have at home, but you should consider it twice when you have rabbits, or even children playing around.
Aloe Vera as a household plant we often use for medicine, especially in homeopathic remedies. And while it is a beautiful succulent and relatively easy to grow, it should not be given to rabbits to eat. As a rule of a thumb they would not eat it, but if really hungry they may, and it may not end well. .
Rhubarb, Fox Glove – not succulents but plants risky for rabbits
Rhubarb is a common garden plant that many people use for cooking If you’ve never tried rhubarb cake, I definitely encourage you to do so! But you should also know that it contains oxalates that prevent the absorption of calcium. Therefore, rhubarb is harmful to rabbits, but it won’t kill rabbits.
Fox Glove grows often in hedges and woodland. Many people plant it in their gardens though as well, wanting to enjoy its attractive flowers. This plant contains chemicals and substances like cardiac glycosides and is very poisonous. If rabbits eat ti, they may have diarrhea, can be dehydrated, and may feel abdominal pain. Definitely something you should avoid at all costs.
* May also interest you: Are succulents poisonous for cats?
Glycophosate herbicide products, and the impact on rabbits
Many herbicides contain this dangerous chemical compound. Rabbits may be exposed to it anytime they have access to plants/weeds that have been recently treated or sprayed with herbicides. Other ingredients of these products can be poisonous as well.
If rabbits ingested them, they will to become weak and may lose their appetite, which can eventually have fatal consequences. Some develop severe abdominal pain and may have difficulties in breathing. Rabbits that will show these symptoms may die, with or without treatment.
Euphorbia, Jade Plant, and rabbits
Growing succulents from Euphorbia family and having a family of rabbits rabbits at the same time may not be a good idea. Rabbits are attracted to green juicy grasses and they cannot identify if it is poisonous or not, especially if the plant isn’t typical to their natural area, so they do not carry the information in their genes.
If you are going to have such succulents at home, make sure your rabbits cannot reach it. If they do, it will lead them to a life-threatening situation. Jade plant, however, is an excellent succulent to grow when you have rabbits, since it is a “rabbit friendly plant”. It won’t cause any harm to the rabbits, even if they eat it in quantities.
Few tips to make sure your rabbits won’t get poisoned
Rabbits see every plant as food, and may taste any plant they find in their surroundings, whether it is toxic or not. Like succulents, rabbits are cute. But the consequences of having rabbits and succulents at the same time may result in either your pets being harmed, or your beautiful plants being damaged, or eaten altogether… You can do a few things to keep both your pets and succulent plants safe. Let’s have a look at them now.
- Keep your plants out of reach -The best way to do this is to find a safe place for your plants. Rabbits aren’t excellent climbers such as cats, for example. They can jump decently, but it is unlikely that they will reach the plants on your windows, or on your table.
- Place your succulents in different locations – Dividing your plants into several groups may be helpful to avoid harm to your plants. You can do some research about your plants, and divide them into three categories. First, the “non-dangerous” plants, which are completely safe, second, the “non-dangerous” but can cause stomach troubles if eaten, and third, those that are toxic and deadly. Needless to say, you should place them accordingly in your house, masking sure rabbits can reach only plants that are safe to them.
- Decorate the pot – Many bunnies like to dig. Consequently plant pots may not be good for them, because digging in them, they may be exposed to fertilizers. To avoid this, you can put decorative stones in the pot on top of the soil. Once there are stones, the rabbit won’t dig into the soil.
- Giving rabbits a chewing alternative – Same with digging, rabbits are a very curious animal and they will chew anything they see. The good news is that you can buy chewing alternatives at pet shops near you, or get this great organic chewing toys from Amazon (* please note this is a sponsored link, I may earn a few cents at no extra costs to you, if you decide to purchase the toys).
- Train you rabbit – This may sound silly but it is a very nice way to make your furry balls get away from plants. If you put a lot of effort and time to do it and set limits to your bunnies, this may work. Rabbits aren’t stupid as some people think. They can be trained, just like any other pets. But you need to put in the time and effort. Setting limits like telling them “No” when you see them stealing a sniff around your plants at home, may help a lot. You can also try the coins in a jar. If your rabbit approaches succulents, shake the jar to produce a rattling sound. This should discourage them from approaching it again, especially if you repeat it several times.
Succulents are cute and adorable plants. But behind their beauty, these plants can hurt pets or even humans. That being said, you need to be careful what type of succulents you’re growing at home, and where you place them. I hope that this post helps you keep your rabbits safe from your succulents, and the other way around. Do not forget to check also my complete guide on succulents growing, to make sure you get the best out of your efforts. Thank you!