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Essential oils that are poisonous to cats

Poisonous essential oils 

I love essential oils.  The fresh smell wafts thru my home and depending upon what mood I’m in, or would like to create, changes by the day too. Lavender, the calming scent, is known to aid in lowering anxiety in pets. So, at Wagging Tails Pet Resort & Spaw, we have a spa grade oil diffuser that pumps this relaxing scent in to our resort guest rooms and cat condos. The diluted lavender scent makes pet’s rooms, cozy, fresh, and calms their anxiety.  

Oils can be used in many different ways- ingested orally, on skin, diffused thru the air. Each way has a different affect and outcome. For that reason, I would never administer the oils to pet’s on their skin or orally, without the consent of a veterinarian. In fact, lavender oil in it’s purest form, in large doses, placed on the skin of a cat, is toxic. So, it is important to know your oils, their uses, and what is, or is not, safe for your pet.

Today I read about how recently a woman began using essential oils and unknowingly had been poisoning her cat. All animals process essential oils differently. What may be safe for dogs, may not be, for cats or birds.  Although essential oils have tremendous amounts of positive qualities, I encourage you to please research essential oils before you use them in your home when you have pets. Specific use of some oils, such as cinnamon, tea tree, peppermint and eucalyptus, can be fatal for your pet.

Cat unknowingly poisoned by essential oil

Here’s what was reported on Facebook January 7, 2018. A woman had unknowingly poisoned her cat by using a diffuser in her house with eucalyptus oil to alleviate her head cold. She said:

“Our family’s cat name is Ernie. He has lived with us most of his 16 years. I unknowingly have been poisoning him since Christmas and feel the need to warn everyone who might be unaware of the toxicity of essential oils. I bought a diffuser and a set of essential oils from Amazon. We started using ours soon after the holiday and loved how the different oils made the house smell, trying a different one each day. I came down with a head cold. On the package with the oils, it said that eucalyptus oil was good for congestion, so we had the diffuser going several hours for several days in a row and close to where I was sleeping.

My cat Ernie loves sleeping with me. The first couple days I didn’t notice any symptoms with Ernie, but on the fourth day, he was lethargic, unstable on his feet and was drooling excessively. My husband instinctively Googled eucalyptus oil. It stated that it can be toxic to cats and they can’t metabolize it and stated all of Ernie’s symptoms. It also said that without medical attention, it could be fatal! So I took him to the vet right away! The vet gave him a shot of antibiotics and another shot of vitamins to boost him and instructions to watch him over the weekend.
Ernie hasn’t been himself. He is eating and drinking a little, walking a little better, has some diarrhea, but is still not out of the woods”.

Essential oils come in all different grades, qualities or purities. When purchasing oils, we recommend companies like Young Living or Doterra. The production of the oils thru those companies can be thoroughly researched. Know your oils and their use. Keep them in an area away from pets to prevent ingestion or accidental spills. And be aware of the signs of oil poisoning. 

What are the signs of essential oil or liquid potpourri poisoning?
Symptoms may include:
Fragrance or scent on hair coat, skin, or breath or in vomit
Difficulty breathing
Difficulty walking or uncoordinated gait
Drooling
Lethargy or weakness
Muscle tremors
Pawing at the mouth or face
Redness or burns on the lips, gums, tongue, or skin
Vomiting

If you should see these signs, contact the Pet Poison Helpline (800-213-6680) and visit your vet immediately.

Wagging Tails Pet Sitting, Mobile Grooming Service, Pet Resort & Spaw  are located in Connecticut. Offering over 24 years of professional pet care experience.  860 621-7387 (Pets) www.waggingtails.com