Flowers You Can Plant In A DOG-SAFE Garden

14 Colorful Flowers You Can Plant in a Dog-Safe Garden

Updated 04/29/2024 by Ava Jaine

Looks like the warm weather has finally arrived. I bet you are itching to get outside and start planting…I know I am! Before you dive into your gardening adventures this year, let’s take a quick peek at some flowers that won’t harm your dog.

It’s important to steer clear of blooms that could be toxic to your dog. We have a nice list of Colorful Flowers You Can Plant in a Dog-Safe Garden.

Table Of Contents:

Lady enjoying her garden at spring time with her dachshund dog

Annual Flowers That are Safe for Dogs:

My husband and I look forward to planting fresh flowers in our garden each spring. But with our two mischievous doxies who love to dig and much on everything, we’ve got to be extra careful about what we put in the ground to keep them out of harm’s way.

I was super happy to discover a bunch of pretty blooms that won’t pose a risk to our dogs. Here are some gorgeous annual flowers that are safe for dogs.

  • Roses:
    Roses are non-toxic flowers that are pretty safe for dogs.  Don’t let your pup get too close though, they have some prickly thorns, so they may require a little decorative fence to protect your dog from a sharp poke.

Pink Rose Bush in a flower garden
  • Zinnias:
    These pretty flowers are safe for your canine friend as well.   They can really add some brilliant color to your flower garden.  Zinnias bloom from them middle of summer until the season’s first frost. They attract hummingbirds and butterflies, which help with the flower pollination.
White and Red striped Zinnia in the garden on a sunny day
  • Snapdragons:
    Lovely snapdragons are also safe for dogs. They are considered a “self-seeding” annual flower. They do best in full sun.

  • African Violet:
    These cute flowers are safe for your dog.   Violets are fairly easy to maintain and they grow best in filtered light, not direct sun.

  • Orchids:
    The Phalaenopsis Orchid (aka: Moth Orchid or Moon Orchid) are non-toxic to dogs.  Orchids can brighten up your home for several months at a time.  Fertilizer is recommended to keeping theses beauties growing, which is toxic, so keep them up where your dog can’t reach them if you have one in your home.

  • Sunflowers:
    These golden flowers are safe for dogs.  Sunflowers will add lots of charm to your flower garden and style to your home.

Candy Mountain Hybrid Sunflower growing in the garden

Perennial Flowers That are Safe for Dogs:

Planting a few perennials is a great idea so you don’t have to replant them every year, saving you time and effort in the long run. Plus, they often establish deeper roots, providing a more stable environment for your garden.

Here’s a nice list of perennial flowers that are safe for dogs to enjoy year after year.

Keep in mind, the following dog-friendly flowers are safe to plant in your garden, but adding any pesticides or fertilizers is toxic to your dog.

  • Hollyhocks:
    Hollyhocks aren’t poisonous to dogs, but their leaves and stems have sharp fibers that can cause an irritation and an itchy rash if your dog rubs up against the plant.  Hollyhocks are considered a short-lived perennial because most varieties only live two to three years.

dachshund dog laying in a bed of pretty garden flowers
  • Petunias:
    Petunias are perennial flowers that are planted in the spring, then bloom throughout the warm months.  They are safe and will not harm your furry companion.

  • Honeysuckle Fuchsia:
    The Honeysuckle Fuchsia is a colorful, non-toxic choice for your dog-safe garden. These exotic looking beauties are shaped like little hanging lanterns. Fuchsia flowers come in shades of red, magenta, pink, and purple.

  • Pansies:
    Pansies come in a variety of colors including white, yellow, blue, purple, orange, and red.
Colorful Pansies in a bucket on a white metal table
  • Bee Balm:
    Bee Balm is a non-toxic plant that is safe for dogs and will add a beautiful aroma to your garden.  Bee Balm comes in shades of pink, purple, red, and white. Bee balm spreads rapidly and comes back each year.

  • Hens and Chicks:
    Hens and Chicks are fast-growing succulents that are safe around dogs.  They are easy to grow and do not require a lot of water.  They are a great addition to any flower or rock garden.

  • Nasturtiums:
    These flowers are usually grown as annual flowers, but are actually perennial flowers. These pretty flowers are dog-safe and will add a nice aroma to any garden. Nasturtiums don’t need fertilizers, so they are easy to plant in different locations of your garden.

    Note: Nasturtium (Watercress) is Toxic to dogs.

  • Jasmine:
    Jasmine is a delightful plant that is safe to have around your pup. It prefers warm temperatures, a good amount of water, and needs additional potassium to grow. Madagascar Jasmine is safe and non-toxic to dogs.

    Note: Cape Jasmine and Paraguayan Jasmine ARE TOXIC to dogs.


Beware of Questionable Dog-Safe Flowers:

While some flowers claim to be non-toxic and safe for dogs it’s crucial to use caution, as they may have toxic relatives that look almost identical to them.

I’ve categorized the following flowers as “questionable” and advise planting them in your garden at your own risk.

Always do your research before introducing any new flowers to your garden to ensure your pup’s safety. Checking for potential hazards can go a long way in safeguarding your furry friend’s well-being.

  • Lilies:
    Lilies can cause gastrointestinal upset in dogs but aren’t considered toxic like they are to cats.

Bright Orange Lily in a Garden
  • Gerbera Daisies:
    Gerbera Daisies are not toxic to Dogs,  but the Daisy Chrysanthemums are toxic to dogs.

    What are the differences between Daisy Chrysanthemum and Gerbera Daisies? 

    Gerbera Daisies (Non-Toxic):  Gerbera Daisies originated from Africa.   Types of Gerbera Daisies: Gerbera Jamesonii and  Lollipop Gerber.

    Chrysanthemum Daises (Toxic): The Painted Daisy and the Tiger Tail are Very Toxic to your dog. These flowers originated from China.

    These pretty flowers look ‘similar’, so be extra cautious if you choose to add them to your garden.

White Daisy Blooming in the garden
  • Marigolds:
    Are marigolds toxic to dogs?  Some marigolds are toxic to dogs and some aren’t toxic.  Many flowers in the marigold family can cause your dog to have GI issues when eaten and also cause skin irritation if touched. 

    Pot marigolds are considered non-toxic to dogs if eaten.  If your pup eats the wrong type of Marigold, symptoms of Marigold Poisoning include vomiting, excessive drooling, upset stomach and pain, diarrhea, redness and irritation of the skin, nose, and eyes.

Orange Marigold Flowers enjoying the summer sun

Dog-Friendly Shrubs:

What about Dog-Friendly Shrubs or Bushes?  Each shrub is listed as non-toxic to dogs, but keep in mind, your pup can still get sick if they take a bite out of your plants.

Bright Pink Crepe Myrtle Flowering tree in bloom

Dog-Friendly Shrubs for Your Garden:

  • Tropical Hibiscus

  • Crepe Myrtle

  • Hawthorn

  • Magnolia

  • Figleaf Palm

  • Bamboo Palm

  • Oregon Grape

  • Forsythia (aka: Golden Bells)

  • Boston Fern

Pink and white Peony flower in a garden

Now, don’t let your pup feast on your garden plants or flowers just because they are non-toxic.  Some plants and flowers can still make your dog very sick.  Continue to remain cautious about your dog rooting around the garden.

If your dog does ingest any poisonous flowers, call your vet or the Pet Poison Helpline: (855) 764-7661.

If your dog does ingest any poisonous flowers, call your vet or the Pet Poison Helpline: (855) 764-7661

Toxic Flowers That are Not Safe for Dogs

What Flowers Can Make Dogs Sick? Flowers that are not safe for dogs include Azalea, Buttercups, Chrysanthemums, Dahlia, Gardenias, Gladiolas, Hibiscus, Hyacinth, Hydrangeas, Mums, Primroses, Oleander, Rhododendrons, Rose of Sharon, and Sweet Peas.

Related Post: Flowers That Are Toxic To Dogs, by the ASPCA

Bright Blue Hydrangea Blooming in the garden on a sunny day


Cocoa bean mulch is made from cocoa shells and contains theobromine, which is very toxic to dogs. 

Pine needle mulch is sharp, and if ingested can puncture the lining of your dog’s stomach.  So, skip the cocoa bean and pine needle mulch.

It’s best to stick with cedar mulch, untreated wood mulch, or hemlock mulch instead.

Printable Dog-Safe Flowers List

When you are ready to purchase those dog-friendly flowers for your garden, take along our Free Printable list of Dog-Safe Flowers with you. Just click on the image below and set your printer scale settings to ‘fit to paper’.

dog safe plants print out

Benefits Of Gardening:

There’s no reason to give up on gardening if you have a curious pooch at home. Gardening is great for your health!  Planting your beautiful flower garden can be therapeutic and a nice stress reliever.

Creating a dog-friendly garden is not only achievable but also very rewarding. By including a mix of annual and perennial flowers that are safe for dogs, you can enjoy a vibrant outdoor space with your pup without the worry. This year, steer clear of flowers that are not safe for dogs and instead focus on outdoor flowers that are safe for dogs like sunflowers, roses, and zinnias.

What Dog-Friendly Flowers do you like to plant each year?  Let us know below in the comments.

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