Essential Oils Safe or Toxic for Pets?

NewsOnPets, Essential Oils

Essential oils are natural and fragrant. They are organic constituents of plants, extracted via distillation or cold pressing. While the term natural and organic may seem safe. However, when it comes to household pets, is it really safe?

“Preliminary research suggests that these potent oils may have some health benefits for dogs and humans, and many holistic veterinarians incorporate essential oils into their practices. Essential oils are often advertised as natural treatment options or even alternatives to traditional medicine, treating everything from anxiety to skin conditions. However, the higher the concentration of the essential oil, i.e. 100%, the greater the risk to your pet”, states the American Kennel Club (AKC)


Pets need time to adjust to new scents and sensations of essential oils. Oils such as Bitter Almond, Mustard, Clove, Red and white thyme, Juniper etc. are proven harmful amongst pets. Oil applied to the dog skin causes itching and irritation.

“Chemicals present in the oils are absorbed into your pet’s system via the skin or orally, and metabolized by the liver. Therefore, using essential oils could be especially problematic for puppies and young dogs, dogs with liver disease, and elderly dogs. If the pet licks the essential oil applied to him, it can be poisonous and result in gastrointestinal upset”, according to AKC.

Essential oils used as natural tick and flea preventatives are considered to be ‘minimum-risk pesticides’ by The Environmental Protection Agency. This means that they are immune to all regulations.  Some of the symptoms that develop amongst pets with the use of essential oils are drooling, vomiting, tremors, ataxia, respiratory suffocation, low heart rate, low body temperature, and liver or renal failure.

“Quality of oil is key and education regardless of multi-level marketing. Plugins from the store are not oils they are synthetic and can cause harm. Quality essential oils are a great way to get rid of chemicals in your house that actually cause harm along with your dogs”, Jessie LeClair said in a Facebook post.

Every animal is different

Every animal is different and can react differently once exposed to the fragrant or absorption of certain oils. It is best suggested to diffuse oils in spaces where your pet relaxes the most. If needed to apply on the body, diluting the oil serves the best benefits. Applying particular oil to your body and being around your pet for a while helps to understand the behaviour and reaction of your pet. However, consulting your veterinarian before the use of any essential oil is best suggested.

Pets who are under 8 weeks need to be kept away from such essential oils, states Young Living essential oils. In comparison to humans, animals are most sensitive to essential oils and hence great care must be taken before the application of such a product.

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About the Author: Fiona Vaz

Passionate about writing, Fiona is best known for her features and abstract writing. A sports lover, an avid shopaholic and a travel freak, Fiona expresses thoughts through words and considers herself totally opinionated, and rightfully so!

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