Is Phlox Dangerous to Pets?

Phlox, a flowering plant in the Polemoniaceae family, is not dangerous to dogs or cats. This evergreen perennial isn't toxic, so even if your pet nibbles on the leaves or flowers, no harm should ensue. Although there are many types of native phlox, the two commonly sold commercially are Phlox subulata and Phlox paniculata. Phlox subulata is also known by the names moss phlox, creeping phlox, rock pink and moss pink, while Phlox paniculata is marketed as garden phlox.

Multicolored phlox different varieties
Plant phlox in your garden without worrying about Fido's or Fluffy's safety.
credit: Ksenia_Pelevina/iStock/Getty Images

Pet-Safe Phlox

In the garden, plant phlox where it can receive at least four hours of direct sunlight daily. As a perennial, you can look forward to its blooming every year with little additional work after the initial planting. Phlox subulata flowers bloom in white, pink or purple. It's a low-growing plant that derives its moss nickname from the carpetlike mats it forms. Ideal for rock gardens, this phlox's native habitat includes rock ledges and slopes.

Phlox paniculata appears white, pink, red, orange, purple and bicolored shades. On average, each plant is 40 inches tall and 23 inches wide. Typically, these taller growers are planted in the middle or rear of a perennial garden.

If you purchase either of these phlox species from a commercial nursery, it should be safe for Fluffy and Fido. Consider refraining from transplanting a native species of phlox without doing some research to determine what species it is and whether it has any potential for toxicity.