Essential Oils and Pets
Many people turn to natural options when caring for their homes and families. These options can provide an effective alternative to harsh chemicals and synthetic products. However, natural solutions might not be the safest option. In fact, many are extremely dangerous to pets. One example is essential oils.
Dangers of Essential Oils
Because essential oils come from natural sources, many people believe that they are safe. This simply is not true. Essential oils can be toxic and even deadly to pets.
These oils are highly concentrated. While the plants they are made from are often safe for pets, the large doses found in essential oils can cause serious problems. This is true for children as well. You might not realize that peppermint essential oil can slow a child’s heart rate to dangerous levels.
Since essential oils are not considered medicine, they are not required to list side effects and warnings on the bottle. It is up to the consumer to do their research to determine the risks of using these products.
Essential oils can cause harm when ingested, applied topically or inhaled. Using essential oils in the home for aromatherapy or other uses can harm your pets over time. Cats are particularly vulnerable.
Dangers of Diffusing Essential Oils
Diffusing essential oils is the most common cause of problems. Candles do not pose the same risk, as their temperature does cause the oils to reach a volatile state. Cats are not able to metabolize essential oils due to the lack of an enzyme known as glucuronyl transferase.
The effects of diffusing essential oils can occur slowly, over time. Cats can go several years without showing signs of a problem then suddenly become extremely ill without warning. Affected cats often die.
Essential Oils to Avoid
The following essential oils should never be diffused around cats:
- Tea Tree
This should not be considered a complete list as other oils can cause problems as well.
We understand how tempting it can be to turn to natural remedies and alternatives. However, it’s extremely important that you fully research the possible effects of all substances before using them around your pets.