are diffusers bad for cats

Cats are especially susceptible to potential toxicity from essential oils due to the different way in which their liver functions. Using essential oil diffusers or applying oils on your cat can potentially lead to liver failure due to the fact that they cannot properly metabolize them.

What Are Essential Oils?

These are plant-derived oils that have been concentrated and refined. They have a rich essence or fragrance and are derived from particular plants. Â.

You can either make them in their purest form or purchase them as part of cleaning and cosmetic products to use them. Regardless of whether you own pets or not, you should still handle these oils and the products that contain them carefully.

Veterinarians advise against giving cats essential oils, but some pet owners assert that there are advantages. For example:

Repelling cat fleas. Some pet owners apply essential oils, like cedarwood and rosemary, to their cats to help keep fleas away. Â.

Improving mood. While using essential oils can be calming and relaxing for humans, some pet owners claim that their cats also experience similar benefits. It’s possible that some essential oils can improve your cat’s mood by lowering depression and anxiety. Â.

Anti-inflammatory effects. Essential oils have anti-inflammatory qualities, so your cat may benefit if they have arthritis or another inflammatory condition. The same goes for simple inflammatory conditions like bruising. Although the thought of adding some essential oil to your cat’s bathwater might be alluring, keep in mind that anything can go wrong at any time.

Digestion. Some cat owners have used essential oils to help their cats with digestive problems, such as vomiting and diarrhoea. Nevertheless, you should never mix essential oils with your cat’s food. The risk outweighs any perceived benefit.

It is advisable to avoid putting your cat’s health and life in danger by not letting them come into contact with essential oils until you have discussed the matter with your veterinarian and obtained their approval.

What to Do If Your Cat Shows Signs of Essential Oil Poisoning

Contact your veterinarian as soon as possible if your cat exhibits signs of poisoning while using essential oils at home. Â.

Your cat’s chances of recovering are better the sooner you seek treatment. Having as much information as possible on hand is beneficial. Â.

During your appointment with the veterinarian, you will require the following essential information to aid in the course of treatment: the product’s packaging and, if feasible, a sample:

The oil that caused the poisoning. It’s critical to understand the particular oil that’s involved in order to provide your cat with the appropriate care. Bring the product or its packaging to the veterinarian if you own it.

The amount of oil ingested by the cat. Your cat will require special care if it actively consumed the oil. Â.

Your cat’s weight. Because smaller cats are more vulnerable than larger ones, knowing this information can literally save lives.

Age of the cat. Â Older cats and kittens should receive more attention as they are likely to be more affected.

When you arrive at the veterinarian’s office, the doctor may conduct a physical examination or run a blood test to determine the severity of your cat’s poisoning. Their primary concern will be determining whether the cat has damage to its kidneys or liver. After the vet treats your cat, they ought to be safe.

Essential Oil Toxicity in Cats

These oils are dangerous because they contain substances like phenols, ketones, and terpenes. Because your cat’s liver lacks the enzymes needed to process and eliminate these substances, it is unable to metabolize them. Therefore, there’s always a chance that they’ll build up to toxic levels in the liver. Â.

Because many essential oils contain these substances, they are regarded as hazardous to cats. They include:

  • PotpourriÂ
  • Clove
  • Bitter almond
  • Cinnamon
  • Lavender
  • Eucalyptus oilÂ
  • Citrus
  • Sweet birch oilÂ
  • Thyme
  • Ylang-ylang
  • Juniper
  • Bergamot
  • MintÂ
  • Wormwood
  • Tarragon
  • Sassafras
  • Rose
  • Rosemary
  • Sandalwood
  • Myrrh
  • Geranium
  • Tea tree
  • Pine
  • Eucalyptus

Your cat could come into contact with these oils through:

Direct skin contact. Refrain from putting essential oils on your cat’s skin or fur. The oil can easily get absorbed through the skin.

Ingestion/swallowing. While your cat grooms, there’s a chance they’ll lick the oil off their fur and swallow it. It is possible for a diffuser to topple over, releasing oil and putting a cat in danger if it licks it off.

Inhalation. Your cat can breathe in essential oils through a reed diffuser or plugin, though this doesn’t happen very often. Even though the oils used might be diluted, a cat suffering from asthma might still be in danger.


Is it safe to use a diffuser around cats?

While we wait for more research on essential oils and animals, as a rule of thumb, we recommend you avoid using diffusers if your animal has breathing problems, is confined to a small space or a lot of oil needs to be used. Speak to your veterinarian before bringing essential oils into your home or using a diffuser.

Which essential oils are toxic to cats?

Many liquid potpourri products and essential oils, including oil of cinnamon, citrus, pennyroyal, peppermint, pine, sweet birch, tea tree (melaleuca), wintergreen, and ylang ylang, are poisonous to cats. Both ingestion and skin exposure can be toxic.

Is calming diffuser safe for cats?

Cat calming diffusers are generally considered safe when used according to the manufacturer’s instructions, but you should avoid any direct contact with the pheromone liquid. Most diffusers contain a paraffin-based oil that can be fatal if it enters the airways after being swallowed.

Is lavender air diffuser safe for cats?

Lavender oil may be even more dangerous for cats than a lavender plant. Essential oils are highly concentrated, so they often contain large amounts of linalool and linalyl acetate. When diffused, lavender essential oil can end up on your cat’s coat, where it can become absorbed by the skin.