This is a collection of our info about using essential oils safely around pets.
On this page you will find:
- The link to Using Essential Oils Safely around Dogs
- The link to Using Essential Oils Safely around Cats
- Info about safety about other small animals
- A safe recipe for fleas
- Is Tea Tree Safe for Dogs?
- Recommended Reading
Please be very careful using essential oils around cats. They simply are unable to metabolize essential oils due to the lack of glucuronyl transferase, a liver enzyme.
Other Small Animals
No essential oils should be used *around* any other small animals, such as bird, fish, rabbits, hamsters or any other small animals that live in a cage or tank. Please note *around* means no diffusing any oils in the same room with an animal that is in a cage or tank. If you are using EOs in a cleaning spray it would be best to remove the cage (or the animal from a cage) to another room for a time so the scent of the oils can dissipate.
Do you have issues with fleas? Here is a great recipe from Lea which can help. If you have issues with fleas in the home, please see our Pests info here. Pets in the Home, Yard and Garden. If you are not familiar with hydrosols that are mentioned in the following recipe you can find that info here. Everything you wanted to know about Hydrosols
The Question of Tea Tree and Dogs from Lea
This question comes up often, because in my post about dogs (UsingEOsSafely.com/safedogs) I have Tea Tree listed as safe for use with dogs when used appropriately. This was after consulting two popular books about aromatherapy and animals, and taking a highly respected course on animal aromatherapy.
But some people believe it is NOT safe at all based on another group’s info (run by a woman I respect). I checked out (again) that particular info and here are my comments and why I take the stance that Tea Tree is NOT toxic to dogs if used appropriately:
The group has a file which states: “There are certain essential oils that should not be used with animals: one in particular is tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia), which for some pets can cause poisoning and other serious health concerns [2, 3, 4]. “
2 is a link to this page: http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/poison/tea-tree-oil/
Which states: “As little as 7 drops of 100% oil has resulted in severe poisoning, and applications of 10-20 mls of 100% oil have resulted in poisoning and death in both dogs and cats. Products containing tea tree oil concentrations less than 1-2% are generally considered non-toxic if used according to labeled directions. “I think we can all agree using THAT much of ANY essential oil is not cool! And it DOES state here 1-2% dilution IS NON-TOXIC. And I only recommend 0.25% topical use.
3 is a link to this page: http://www.poison.org/articles/2010-dec/tea-tree-oil
Which states: “Tea tree oil and pets: Veterinary toxicologists have reported that large amounts of tea tree oil applied to the skin of cats and dogs caused poisoning. Symptoms have included muscle tremors, weakness, difficulty in walking, low body temperature, and excessive salivation. With pets, as with people, following label instructions is essential.”
Note “LARGE AMOUNTS” and “APPLIED TO THE SKIN”
4 is a link to here: http://messybeast.com/teatree.htm
Which discusses that it is unsafe around cats (I agree).
This all said, if you disagree, and want to avoid using Tea Tree around dogs – go for it 🙂
Recommended Reading & Videos
If you pet questions aren't answered here or in of the links shared above, we suggest that you look into purchasing one of these two books.
Essential Oils for Animals – This book makes it simple for you to find the right essential oil for any problem, and contains practical, easy-to-use information on: How, why, and when to use essential oils for animal health and daily care, Detailed profiles of 52 essentials oils, 20 hydrosols, and 12 carrier oils, How to make natural lotions and potions. Plus, How to use 5 Element Theory to choose essential oils and understand your animal. An exceptional resource for anyone who wants to support their animals.
Holistic Aromatherapy for Animals – A Comprehensive guide to the use of essential oils and hydrosols with animals.