How to Find Pet-Friendly Seeds for Your Garden

How to Find Pet-Friendly Seeds for Your Garden


Gardening and pets don’t always go hand in hand. Between avoiding toxic plants and shielding your carefully landscaped beds from damage, finding a middle ground where pets and gardens coexist can be tricky.

Pet-friendly gardens are the answer, curated with safety and pet health in mind. And the first step in starting a pet-friendly garden is choosing the right seeds.

In collaboration with Petco Neighborhood Farm and Supply animal care experts, we developed a Botanical Interests Pet-Friendly Seed Collection that contains more than 90 plants to choose from. You can also shop in-store at 9 select Petco Neighborhood Farm and Supply locations listed below.

The Benefits of Pet-Friendly Gardens

Gardeners with pets have more to consider than design when choosing their plants.

If your pets live outdoors and have access to all garden areas, the first concern is safety. Many garden plants are toxic to pets and can cause an unexpected trip to the vet, especially for curious pets that love to explore.

Layout and plant choices impact how your pets interact with the garden. Digging, climbing, and nibbling are bound to happen indoors and out. Gardeners should consider these interactions when deciding what to plant and where.

That’s where pet-friendly gardens come in. These spaces are tailored to the needs of your furry or feathered friends, allowing them to enjoy your garden as much as you do. Whether you’re dedicating a patch of your backyard to exploration and play among safe plants, or growing healthy fresh produce to add to their diets, pet-friendly plants are the best way to keep your pets happy and healthy.

How to Find Pet-Friendly Seeds for Your Garden

Once you’ve decided to create a pet-friendly garden, it can be tough to know where to start. Your first step is choosing seeds experts recommend as safe for your pets. To save yourself some research, look to the pet-friendly Botanical Interests Seed Collection to help out. Developed with Petco’s animal care specialists, this collection contains over 90 different seeds ideal for a pet-friendly garden.

Not only are these plants non-toxic to pets, but many have benefits for your four-legged friends. You can add some of these plants to your pet’s diet or even use the produce as treats while harvesting some for yourself as you go. And if you’re just planting to keep your pets out of harm's way when playing outdoors, you’ll have peace of mind that this collection is safe.

Which Seeds to Choose for Your Pets

While the plants in this Botanical Interests Seed Collection are safe for pets, your specific choice depends on which pets you have. Animals have different responses to specific plants, meaning a plant great for a dog or cat might be a complete no-go for your bird or fish.

The Petco seed compatibility chart is a quick way to determine the level of safety of the plants you want to grow for your specific pets:

  • Green plants are safe in moderation
  • Orange indicates caution should be taken
  • Blue plants are safe in moderation, but only when cooked
  • Red plants are not safe.
Seed compatibility chart for pets

Even if a plant is green for your pet, it’s important to remember that moderation is key, especially when introducing the plant. Some parts of plants, such as leaves or rind, may also be problematic, or the fruits may only be safe to consume when ripe. Even if you're not growing as a source of food, all parts of the plant should be considered if there’s any chance of your pets ingesting them.

Symptoms to Watch for

While you may have chosen plants safe for your pets in moderation, there’s still potential for adverse reactions depending on individual pets and their current diets. If you notice any of these symptoms after ingestion of any new plant, make a note of what was ingested and when and consult with your veterinarian.


  • Excess gas
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Itchiness
  • Drooling
  • Seizures
  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • Inflammation
  • Not eating

To be on the safe side, please consult with a vet before adding anything new to your pet’s diet. Keep a close eye out for signs of discomfort that may require a vet visit.

Where to Shop the Pet-Friendly Botanical Interests Seed Collection

Seed packets in the pet-friendly Botanical Interests Seed Collection are available in-store at some Petco Neighborhood Farm & Pet Supply locations in select states. If you prefer to browse in person, these are the Petco Neighborhood Farm and Pet Supply locations to visit:

  • Floresville, TX
  • Early, TX
  • Kinston, NC
  • Mount Sterling, KY
  • Glasgow, KY
  • Henderson, NC
  • Surf City, NC
  • Elizabeth City, NC
  • Cadillac, MI
  • Mt Vernon, OH

For those who can’t visit these select Petco locations, you can also shop the collection through the Botanical Interests online store for delivery across the US, or find our seeds at your local garden supply center or nursery.

Once you have your seed packets in hand, planting is simple. Follow the instructions on the packet to plant at the perfect time, monitoring and caring for young plants closely until they establish. While the plants may potentially be safe for pets at this time, it’s best to keep them protected until the root systems are strong to avoid early damage.

Tips for Pet-Friendly Gardens

Along with choosing plants that are beneficial and safe, there are a few other things you can try to turn your backyard into the ultimate pet-friendly haven, especially for animals that spend most of their day outdoors.

If your puppy loves digging, designate a space where they can do so safely without uprooting all your new plants. 

If your cat likes to climb, make sure to plant cat-safe tree species. Alternatively, install climbing structures or an enclosed "catio" to provide a safe outdoor experience.

Consider the essentials – water and shelter – when laying out a pet-friendly garden. Safe shrubs or trees can provide much-needed shade on sunny days, while an easily accessible water source will ensure your pets never go thirsty after a tiring play session.

Remember to keep pet safety in mind when caring for your plants. Avoid using harsh chemicals on any plants your pets can access, opting for safe organic methods of weed, pest, or disease maintenance instead.

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