Essential Oils That Are Toxic To Dogs
A few people asked me recently about which essential oils are safe or toxic around their dogs. Since a dog is a mans best friend, you definitely dont want to harm your best friend!
If you use essential oils, youll want to protect your best friend from any harm that could arise from using oils in potentially unsafe ways.
This post will help you become aware of which essential oils are toxic to dogs and suggest some oils that are safe for them.
What Should I Do If I Suspect That My Cat Has Been Exposed To Essential Oils Or Liquid Potpourri
Rapid diagnosis and treatment are imperative. If you believe that your cat has ingested or come in contact with essential oils or liquid potpourri, call your veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline , a 24/7 animal poison control center, immediately. The sooner you seek treatment, the better the prognosis and outcome for your cat.
- Do not induce vomiting or give activated charcoal to your cat. This may worsen your cats condition.
- Put the product packaging in a sealed container and take it with you to the veterinary clinic.
- If any product is on the skin or fur, quickly wash it off using a liquid dishwashing detergent.
Essential Oil Diffusers And Your Pet
There have been a lot of stories in the news over the past few weeks about the effects of essential oils used in diffusers on pets.
Essential oils are the concentrated liquids of plants. They are popular in aromatherapy, alternative medicine, as additives in cleaning products and personal care products, as well as home air fresheners.
Many people use essential oil diffusers to improve their health. Lavender is said to help with relaxation and sleep, while eucalyptus and peppermint oils help to clear a stuffy nose when you have a cold.
But just how safe are these oils for our pets?
Pets can experience chemical burns with the direct contact of essential oils onto the skin. If pets lick up spills of these oils, they can experience chemical burns and other toxic effects. Cats are especially sensitive to many essential oils and even just a couple of licks can be harmful.
Many essential oils, such as eucalyptus oil, tea tree oil, cinnamon, citrus, pennyroyal, peppermint, pine, sweet birch, wintergreen, and ylang ylang are toxic to pets. These are toxic whether they are applied to the skin OR used in diffusers.
Oil from diffusers can still be harmful since the diffuser uses water vapor to diffuse tiny oil droplets into the air. Inhaling diffused oils can cause aspiration pneumonia if the diffuser is used in a small space or if it is used for a long period of time, as well as other toxic effects.
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Is Marjoram Essential Oil Safe For Cats
With natural antibacterial properties, may be helpful for treating ear mites in cats. In a 2016 study, researchers used marjoram essential oil as natural treatment for Otodectes cynotis, a common feline parasite which can cause ear infections. Marjoram essential oil was applied to the ears for a 30-day period. Results show that marjoram essential oil reduced ear mite parasite eggs by 99% by day 30.7
While results are promising, always consult with a veterinarian before applying any essential oil on a cat.
How Can I Tell If My Cat Is Having A Reaction To Essential Oils
Symptoms of essential oil poisoning include:
- Excessive dribbling
- Difficulty breathing or breathing with their mouth open
- Collapse or seizures.
If your cat has had skin contact with essential oil, you may notice they have sore or red skin, or even chemical burns on their skin. However, just because there is no damage to their skin dont assume that they are ok.
If you suspect your cat has been had been in contact with or eaten any product containing an essential oil, contact your vet immediately even if they arent showing symptoms. Its better to be safe than sorry.
It can be helpful if your vet knows which essential oil your cat might have been exposed to and what concentration it is. Check the packaging for this information.
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There Is A Lot Of Misinformation Surrounding Pets And Essential Oils
As someone who has worked with and studied oils for a decade, I can attest to the fact that there is a ton of confusing information when it comes to essential oils and pets.
Even within the sources I have come to know and trust, there are disagreements as to what is safe and what is not.
There are extremes on both ends.
On the other end, there are people that say not even Lavender , one of the safest oils, should be used on animals.
Somewhere in the middle is the truth.
Just as with humans, it is crucial to exercise some common sense when administering any treatment to animals. There is no reason to use a toxic oil when a gentler one can have the same effect.
Animals should also be cared for with the same gentleness as with babies. You shouldnt give a baby an adult dose of oils, and in most cases, the same can be said for animals.
It is imperative to consider what type of animal you are treating as well as their size. A blend that one dog can tolerate could be toxic to a cat, bad for puppies, or harmful to pets or dogs of a different size.
Animals are as unique as humans are. You may love Clary Sage, while your best friend may hate it. Our furry friends have their preferences too, and these must be figured out and taken into account when using essential oils for pets.
Can Cloves Be Bad For Dogs
Like already discussed, cloves can be very dangerous for dogs when offered in an excessive dose.
That could lead to some side effects like liver toxicity, diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, and it could also irritate the gastrointestinal tract.
In some extreme cases of clove overdosing, it could cause liver dysfunction, dyspnea, and unconsciousness. So, even though cloves can be safe for dogs, you should only give them in tiny quantities or avoid the spice altogether.
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Using Essential Oils Around Your Pets
February 14, 2017
As pet owners, we often worry about how the products we use in our homes impact the health and well-being of our pets. Essential oils are natural but we may be worried that the wrong essential oil can trigger a negative reaction in our pets. However, aromatherapy can be just as beneficial to our companion animals as it is for ourselves. So if you are worried about using essential oils around your pets or are curious about the benefits of essential oils for your pets, here is a simple guide that can help answer your questions.
Feline Friendly Essential Oils For Cats
Humans and cats have a natural understanding that goes way back in time, as far back as 3,600 BC. It has only improved with time. Today there are well over 500 million domesticated cats worldwide with the US claiming up to 88 million of those.
That makes them the most popular pets, and not just because they are really cool but also because 90% of their brain is similar to that of a human. That explains why Stubbs the Cat was a very successful mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska leading people for a whopping 15 years.
But owning a cat goes beyond just the social and good understanding. There is strong evidence suggesting that owning a feline reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke by a third. Additionally, cat owners are generally more open to new experiences and are 17% more likely to be college/university graduates with at least one degree. That is to say there are endless reasons to keep and love a cat.
Even so, taking care of a domestic feline is totally different from taking care of other pets, especially when essential oils are concerned. If you are a cat owner who also enjoys the occasional scent of essential oils you may want to read on and learn how you can get the best of both without risking the safety of your cat.
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How Essential Oils Are Used In The Household
If you are not up on essential oils, which are all the rage for use in everything from food preparation to beauty products to cleaning supplies to homeopathic medicines, they are naturally occurring, volatile aromatic compounds found in the seeds, bark, stems, roots, flowers, and other parts of plants. They are, in short, what make a rose smell like a rose.
Essential oils properties are not just for our enjoyment, but they are thought to play an important role in the life of the flowers that produce them. Essential oils can attract bees and other insects that aid in pollination. In addition, they can repel other insects that may prove dangerous to the plants. Essential oils may also protect plants from funguses and other microbes.
When we say volatile aromatic compound, what we are referring to are organic molecules that quickly change from a concentrated liquid to a gas at room temperature. These potent gases travel rapidly through the air, interacting with our olfactory sensors and stimulating the brains limbic system. This quick transition from liquid to gas also allows essential oils to be absorbed through the skin and into the bloodstream. While there are oils that can be ingested, this application is said to be the least effective and can pose risksthis method is not generally recommended.
Can You Diffuse Essential Oils Around Dogs
We all want to diffuse our favorite oils, but is it safe for your dog?
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Animal Poison Control Center specifically addressed this question, stating:
Using an oil diffuser for a short time period in a secured area one that your dog or cat cannot accessis not likely to be an issue.
Aspca animal poison control center
The APCC also advises to make sure the area is secure so that your dog cant knock over the diffuser, lick it, or drink it.
Additionally, the room should be well ventilated and have an exit to allow your dog to go into a different area or room in your home..
However, if your dog has breathing problems due to underlying health conditions, allergies or asthma, you may want to avoid using diffusers.
Also, be mindful that dogs that walk through oils that are being diffused can have oil land on their fur and may lick their coat, causing unsafe oral ingestion.
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Using Diffusers And Potential Health Hazards
Our felines are a lot more sensitive to smells than we are. So, inhaling odours you may find mild could cause nose irritation, nausea, drooling, watery eyes and nose, and breathing difficulty with the latter marked by panting, fast breathing, wheezing or coughing. None of these reactions is normal in felines or any other pet.
If its a hairball issue, you may notice your cat crouching with no or little abdominal movement. If its an adverse reaction to essential oils or any other potentially hazardous chemicals, youll be able to tell.#
But Ive Heard Essential Oils Are Dangerous For Cats Is That True
Remember how we mentioned that essential oils are thought to repel certain harmful insectsa sort of natural insect repellent? That same neurotoxicity can be harmful to some animals, especially cats. While this property may boost our immunity, it can poison our cats. Essential oils get metabolized through the liver. Cat livers lack a specific enzyme that leaves them susceptible to various kinds of toxicity . For this reason, avoid oils containing polyphenolic compounds that are harmful to the feline liver. Also, liquid potpourri and some oils burn and irritate the skin. Young kittens and those with compromised livers are even more sensitive, so we advise you to use extra caution around them.
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Which Essential Oils For Cats Are Safe
If you do some reading around the web you will come across a lot of conflicting information about cats and essential oils. But one thing that does stand out is the fact that cats dont process oils in the same way that humans and other pet animals like dogs do.
Thats why cats and certain oils dont mix together well. It is that difference that makes so many cat owners unsure about what oils to use for their furry companions.
Can You Use Essential Oils On Cats
There is a lot of controversy concerning the use of oils on cats. While there are some veterinarians that have found success with this, like Melissa Shelton, DVM, there are also horror stories of cats becoming violently ill and even dying.
Cats are much different than humans and even dogs. They process chemicals differently than other animals. Their livers lack certain enzymes, namely UDP-glucuronosyltransferase, that helps eliminate the buildup of toxins.
There are a variety of companies that tout their oils are a therapeutic grade or some other marketing term, and therefore any of their oils can be used on animals without issue, including neat.
This is completely erroneous. You cannot change a cats physiology based on a product, and dangerous metabolites can still build up and cause toxicity and seizures.
Because of this, it is highly recommended that people do not use oils on cats at home without consulting someone clinically trained in such use, and through more than theory. It is much safer to stick with gentler solutions like hydrosols.
Toxic buildup can occur in cats through inhalation as well. When using an aromatherapy diffuser, make sure it is in a well-ventilated room, and give all of your animals a way to get away from the scent.
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Which Essential Oils Are Poisonous To Cats
Most essential oils are toxic to cats, including:
- cinnamon oil
- wintergreen oil
- ylang ylang oil
Essential oils are particularly dangerous to cats if they are neat and undiluted. The essential oils in toiletries, cosmetics, reed diffusers and plugin diffusers are usually diluted, however the carrier oil used to dilute the essential oil in many products can also make your cat ill if they eat it, due to the high levels of fat it contains.
Essential Oils Party Over
Not entirely! There are certain essential oils that can be diffused around your cat, as long as they are diluted, and youve received approval from your vet. Some of these include Frankincense, Geranium, Roman Chamomile, Rosemary, and Valerian. However, use caution and only use your diffuser in well ventilated places, where there is enough space for kitty to escape the pungent smells of your Buddha room. Also, if you must diffuse essential oils around your fuzzy bub, purchase high quality oils. Lower grade oils often include contaminants that are harmful to you and your cat.
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Which Essential Oils Are Safe For Dogs
First, anytime you wish to use essential oils for animals of any kind, you must make sure that you are only using 100 percent pure, quality oils.
Youve probably heard terms like therapeutic grade, food-grade, or even medical grade.
But these are just marketing terms with no governance. Seek out only unadulterated and organic oils that are from a reputable supplier.
Once you have found them, here are 10 safe essential oils for dogs that you can start with:
This list of dog safe essential oils is not exhaustive. You may also find there are animal-specific blends from certain companies, such as Infect Away essential oil or Animal Scents oils like Puriclean from Young Living.
Other oils can be used to combat issues that come with having animals, like using a Purification oil for dogs areas to reduce odors, but not necessarily to use on the animal itself.
Some oils that can be safe, like lemon essential oil, can also be harmful to dogs when not used correctly. Just like citrus oils are photosensitizing to humans, using lemon oil for dogs can cause burns, redness, and other sensitization when exposed to the sun.
So it would be wise for people to not use on their dog at home.
Which Essential Oils Are Dangerous For Pets
If you are considering using ANY essential oils in your home, in any way, contact your veterinarian first. There are so many different ways that essential oils and animals can interact without you realizing it.
Some essential oils are harmless, especially in small quantities. So its not like you can never have essential oils and pets at the same time. There may even be some essential oils for pets that are safe in very small amounts. But in any case, always, always, always ask your veterinarian for approval before you use oils.
Essential Oils Harmful to Cats
Oils that are harmful to cats include, but are not limited to:
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Ensuring The Safety Of Your Pets When Diffusing Essential Oil
Here are some tips that will help make sure that your cat or dog will be perfectly safe while you enjoy the benefits of essential oil:
- Better consult your veterinarian before using any essential oil near your pets.
- Keep the diffuser out of reach of your pet and use only high-quality, therapeutic grade essential oil when using the safe kind for your pet.
- If using essential oil with cats, do be extra careful. Cats cant metabolize appropriately since they dont have liver enzymes and ingesting essential oils can increase the risk of toxicity.
- Diffuse oils in a place where there is proper ventilation no matter the kind of essential oil you use.
- Applying essential oil on the pets fur or skin is not advised. It can cause an adverse reaction. Also, your dog or cat might lick the oil and thus lead to toxicity.
There it is. Keep these things in mind to ensure the use of essential oil wont harm your beloved pet.