As a cat lover and practicing aromatherapist, I have always been fascinated by the use of essential oils and their impact on our pets. In my quest to understand the use of essential oils with cats, I discovered some vital information that I believe every cat owner should know.
Cats lack an essential enzyme called glucuronyl transferases, which helps in filtering essential oils out of their system. This means that even small amounts of essential oils can be toxic to cats and cause serious health problems (Bell, 2002). Hence, it is crucial to avoid the use of essential oils and products containing essential oils around cats.
However, this does not mean that the benefits of plant-based remedies cannot be enjoyed by our feline friends. Hydrosols are a safe alternative to essential oils that can be used with cats. Hydrosols are produced during the steam distillation process to extract essential oils. They contain the same compounds as essential oils, but at a lower concentration, making them safer for cats (Bell, 2002). However, it is important to consult with a veterinarian or certified animal aromatherapist before using hydrosols on cats, as not all hydrosols are safe for cats.
Diffusing essential oils can also be harmful to cats as they can absorb the essential oils through their olfactory glands which gets into their system. To minimize exposure, it is recommended to provide a way for cats to exit the diffused area, or to limit the duration of diffusing to 15 minutes. This way, you can still enjoy the benefits of essential oils while keeping your cats safe.
The safety of cats should be the top priority of every cat owner. Essential oils, while they have many benefits, can be toxic to cats due to their inability to process the compounds found in essential oils. Hydrosols are a safe alternative to essential oils that can be used with cats, but it is important to consult with a veterinarian or certified animal aromatherapist before using hydrosols. If you have any questions or concerns about the use of essential oils with cats, please consult with a veterinarian or certified animal aromatherapist.
Bell, K. L. (2002). Holistic Aromatherapy for Animals. Rochester, VT, USA: Findhorn Press