Can Rabbits Eat Pothos? Safety and Alternatives Explained

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If you’re a pet rabbit owner and have houseplants around your home, you may wonder whether your furry friend can nibble on your pothos. While pothos can be a beautiful addition to your indoor space, it’s essential to ensure your pet rabbit’s safety. This article explores whether rabbits can eat pothos and what you need to know to keep them healthy.

What Are Pothos

Pothos, scientifically known as Epipremnum aureum, are popular houseplants that are admired for their hardiness and ability to thrive in various indoor environments. They are particularly well-suited for homes and offices, where they can be grown in hanging baskets or as tabletop displays.

These plants have attractive, heart-shaped leaves that come in a wide array of colors and patterns. Some common varieties include the golden pothos, with its yellow and green marbled leaves, and the marble queen pothos, which features a mix of white and green foliage.

Pothos are versatile plants and can adapt to different lighting conditions, making them an excellent choice for those with limited natural light. They tolerate low light conditions, but they will grow faster and produce more vibrant leaves when placed in a well-lit area.

The care for pothos plants is relatively simple, as they don’t require frequent watering. It’s best to water them thoroughly and allow the soil to dry out before watering again. Additionally, these plants benefit from occasional trimming to maintain their shape and promote lush growth.

Despite their benefits as indoor plants, pothos should be kept away from pets, particularly rabbits. Pothos contain saponins, which are toxic to rabbits and can cause gastrointestinal distress, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain if ingested (source). In severe cases, consuming pothos can even be fatal for rabbits. Hence, it’s essential to exercise caution and keep pothos plants out of reach for pet rabbits.

Rabbits’ Natural Diet

Rabbits are herbivores, meaning their diet mainly consists of various plants, including grasses, leaves, stems, and vegetables. Understanding rabbits’ preferences and natural food choices is crucial to ensure their health and well-being.

In the wild, rabbits primarily graze on grasses and forage for herbs and other leafy greens. This provides them with essential nutrients like fiber, vitamins, and minerals. As domesticated pets, rabbits can thrive on a diet consisting of hay, which serves as an excellent source of fiber and aids in proper digestion.

In addition to hay, rabbits should also consume a variety of fresh vegetables daily. Some vegetable choices that are safe and beneficial for rabbits include bell peppers, bok choy, brussels sprouts, carrot tops, cucumber, endive, escarole, and fennel source. It is essential to gradually introduce new veggies to your rabbit’s diet to avoid potential digestive issues.

It’s important to note that not all plants are safe for rabbits to eat. Some, like pothos, may be toxic for rabbits. There is conflicting information available regarding whether rabbits should eat pothos. While one source claims it can be safely consumed, another source states that pothos plants are toxic and can cause your rabbit pain. Therefore, it’s best to err on the side of caution and keep rabbits away from pothos plants.

To summarize, a rabbit’s natural diet consists of various plants like grasses, leaves, and vegetables. As a rabbit owner, ensure that they consume a balanced diet with a focus on hay and fresh vegetables, while avoiding potentially harmful plants like pothos.

Hazards of Pothos for Rabbits


Pothos plants are toxic to rabbits due to the presence of calcium oxalate crystals, which can cause harm to their health (source). Ingesting these crystals can result in pain and swelling near the rabbit’s mouth. Pothos plants, which belong to the Araceae family, are also known to cause contact dermatitis or skin irritation if there is too much contact with the plant (source).

Digestive Issues

When rabbits nibble on pothos plants, they may experience vomiting, diarrhea, and tremors (source). In more severe cases, ingestion of pothos can lead to seizures and even death. Since pothos is toxic to rabbits, it’s essential to keep these plants out of reach to prevent any accidental ingestion.

It is also worth mentioning that pothos plants can cause rabbits to have an enlarged throat, which makes swallowing difficult (source). This additional hazard highlights the importance of keeping pothos plants away from rabbits and monitoring their environment for any signs of ingestion.

Safe Alternatives for Rabbits


Rabbits can enjoy a variety of vegetables as part of their diet. Leafy greens make a good option for rabbits, such as romaine lettuce, kale, and spinach. Root vegetables like carrots and radishes can also be offered in moderation due to their higher sugar content. Others like bell peppers, squash, and cucumbers are low in calories and high in water content, making them a suitable choice.


Though fruits should only make up a small portion of a rabbit’s diet due to their sugar content, they’re a good treat to offer occasionally. Safe fruits for rabbits include apples (without seeds), bananas, blueberries, and strawberries. Dwarf rabbits can be given one teaspoon of fruit per day, while larger rabbits can have one tablespoon of fruit daily.


Herbs offer both flavor and health benefits for rabbits. Fresh or dried herbs can be fed in moderation, such as parsley, cilantro, mint, and basil. Including these herbs in your rabbit’s meals can provide added vitamins and minerals, enhancing their overall health.

By offering your rabbit a diverse range of vegetables, fruits, and herbs, you can ensure they receive a balanced diet while keeping them away from toxic plants like pothos.

Preventing Access to Pothos

Rabbit-Proofing Your Home

To keep your rabbit safe from pothos plants, it’s essential to take steps to rabbit-proof your home. Begin by placing pothos plants on high shelves or in rooms that your rabbit doesn’t have access to, making it impossible for them to reach these toxic plants. You may also consider installing physical barriers, like baby gates, to block off areas where the pothos plants are located. However, this is only effective if your rabbit is not a great jumper1.

When rabbit-proofing your home, pay special attention to:

  • Ensuring pothos plants are out of reach or inaccessible to rabbits
  • Installing barriers, like baby gates, to separate rabbits from toxic plants
  • Monitoring rabbit’s access to rooms containing pothos plants

Supervising Your Rabbit

Even with proper rabbit-proofing, it’s crucial to supervise your rabbit when they are in the same area as a pothos plant. Regularly monitoring your rabbit allows you to quickly intervene if they show any signs of nibbling on the toxic plant2.

Here are some tips for effectively supervising your rabbit:

  • Always have a watchful eye on your rabbit when they are near pothos plants
  • Intervene immediately if you notice your rabbit attempting to eat the toxic plant
  • Provide a variety of safe, rabbit-friendly plants for your rabbit to chew on instead

By ensuring that pothos plants are kept out of reach, using barriers effectively, and supervising your rabbit, you can protect your fluffy friend from the dangers associated with ingesting toxic plants.

What to Do If Your Rabbit Ingests Pothos

Initial Steps

If you suspect that your rabbit has ingested pothos, it’s crucial to act quickly. Pothos plants are known to be toxic and can cause pain in rabbits. Start by removing any remaining pothos leaves or plant parts from your rabbit’s environment. Gently check the rabbit’s mouth and remove any visible plant material if possible.

Keep a close watch on your rabbit for any signs of distress or illness, such as:

  • Drooling
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting or diarrhea
  • Lethargy

It’s essential to monitor your rabbit closely, as their health can be unpredictable1.

Contacting a Veterinarian

If your rabbit displays any negative symptoms or is noticeably uncomfortable after ingesting pothos, contact your veterinarian immediately. Early intervention can be crucial in preventing permanent damage or even saving your rabbit’s life.

Your veterinarian might ask you questions regarding the incident, such as when it happened, the amount of pothos ingested, and the current symptoms your rabbit is experiencing. Be prepared to provide this information to help them make an informed assessment.

In some cases, your veterinarian may recommend bringing your rabbit in for a thorough examination to determine the best course of action. They may need to provide supportive care or administer medications to alleviate the symptoms caused by pothos ingestion2.

Remember to always keep an eye on your rabbit and ensure that their environment is free of any potentially toxic plants to prevent a similar incident in the future.

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