I want to have a small herb garden in my window, with things like basil and chives and oregano, etc.

I know some plants are toxic to cats, but I don't remember hearing anything about food-plants other than garlic and onions.

Would I be safe to grow something like this one which has Basil, Dill, Thyme, Parsley, Oregano, Cilantro in a window my cat could reach?


If your cat decides to have a little taste, all of those plants should be safe. But after you pick your herb garden, you can check out specific plants here.

The two herbs to watch out for are Spring Parsley & Spanish Thyme, but don't confuse them with the more common forms of parsley and thyme, which are okay. (Source)

While chives are not actually an herb (and would be very unlikely to find in an indoor herb garden, given that you have to uproot them), they should be avoided, as part of the onion family they can be mildly to moderately toxic to dogs and cats. (Source.) Also, their blades seem like they might be tempting to cats.

  • Chives don't need to be uprooted to be used. Common usage is the stock of the plant, the grassy part, and I just snip them off with scissors when I need some. :)
    – Joanne C
    Oct 22 '15 at 11:22

Some of the mint family (peppermint, spearmint, perhaps others), other than catnip which is actually a mint, have salicylate (read: aspirin) and that can be dangerous for cats and so you'd want to avoid them in a home garden that cats can access.

The other one to be aware of is chives. Chives are a member of the same family as onions, garlic, and leeks, known as allium and so all of them are dangerous to cats and dogs.


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