The fourth of October is World Pet Day. Therefor we did some research about how flora and fauna are connected. We looked for reasons to have a pet in your shop, we found flowers and plants named after animals and we found out which flowers and plants can be eaten by animals. We don’t have an explanation for it. But it strikes us that many florists, seem to be animal lovers. Maybe it is the love of nature? Or maybe florists are people who value relationships and love.

Why animals in a flower shop?

Animals provide social support. Let’s face it. There are times when your shop is not very crowded. In terms of the number of visitors, that is. Animals in your shop make those very moments pleasant anyway. Petting an animal even releases oxytocin. The same hormone is released when people cuddle each other. Another reason to have animals in your shop? Your customers (and their children) love to come and pet or watch. A florist often has a social function too. People like to come there and have a chat. Having animals in the shop makes it extra cosy. And customers might stop by more often. What is your experience with animal in flower shops?

Which flowers and plants have animal names?

There are lots of flowers and plants with animal names. In Dutch at least. This is a selection of some Dutch and English flowers and plants with animal names.


The Alocasia is beautiful. Its large leaves look exactly like… right.

Crocodile plant.
The veins and gloss of the leaves strongly remind you of this dangerous reptile. Not standard in our range. But can be ordered. Let your Van der Plas contact know if you are interested!

are found in swampy and wet areas. Maybe that’s why it got its name. Rana culus means ‘little frog’ in Latin. Available from mid-November until the end of April. Our Flourishing Partner Greenflor knows all about it!

Elephant leg.

The largest land mammal is popular for naming. This time, it is the trunk (of the plant) that gave this plant its name.

Paradise bird.
You know this flower and plant of course as Strelitzia. The orange flowers have a heavenly appearance. Just like the bird. By the way, the leaves are great too!

What flowers and plants can you feed your (pet) animals? You can read it below.

Which flowers can animals eat?

We know: we have to take care of Mother Earth. And every little bit helps. Instead of throwing your flowers away, give them a second life this way. Better for the environment and better for your wallet. But which flowers are edible for animals? Rabbits eat leaves and flowers of roses. They also love sunflowers. Parrots safely eat roses and chrysanthemums.

Note that many plants and flowers can be toxic to pets. This site has lots of information on toxic flora for dogs and cats.

Florists and animals is a wonderful combination with many benefits for people and animals. Below is a selection of sparkling photos of florists and their pet/shop animals. Do you also have a pet in your shop? Send the photos to your contact at Van der Plas so we can post them here. Or post your photo online and tag us on Instagram or Facebook.

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