As we all begin to think about flea and tick prevention throughout the warmer months please consider this word of caution for our furry friends.

Pet owners are using essential oils in grooming products, flea repellents and calming elixirs for Fido and Tiger. But pets, like their owners, can have adverse reactions to essential oils.

“My experience in general practice is that essential oils can be harmful or toxic if used inappropriately,” warns Jim Dobies, DVM, veterinarian and president of UrgentVet Pet Clinics in Fort Mill, South Carolina.

Several studies have reported adverse effects. Research published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association reviewed data from the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center and found that use of 100% tea tree oil on cats and dogs was linked with symptoms ranging from lethargy and tremors to partial paralysis. Another study showed that natural flea control products containing essential oils increased the risk of salivation, lethargy and vomiting in pets, even when products were used according to label directions.

Cats are at the greatest risk; they lack the liver enzymes needed to metabolize and eliminate certain substances, including some found in essential oils. Several oils, including wintergreen, citrus, peppermint, cinnamon, clove and tea tree, are all known to be toxic to cats, causing symptoms such as drooling, vomiting, tremors and respiratory distress.

“Essential oils do contain powerful, active compounds and pets cannot communicate whether a particular treatment is effective,” Dobies says. “Given that olfaction in domestic animals is much more sensitive than it is in humans, it seems reasonable to me that low-level, pleasing odors to us may be noxious to pets.”

Dobies suggests using essential oil therapies only under the direction of a trained holistic veterinarian.

This is an excerpt from Energy Time magazine article “Essential Guide to Essential Oils”.

Please visit our website for more information on this and other great health topics. Remember this article is for information only. Do not make any changes in your diet or lifestyle without first consulting with your preventive health care provider. We always pray for your prosperity and health, 3 John 2, blessings, Donna.

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