Many people adore the lovely flower known as lavender. Indoors, from the kitchen to the living area to the bedroom, it is cultivated and displayed. Does lavender benefit felines? For the solution, see the article by Michael Hogan on wtonlinepetsupplies.com below.
Cats and Lavender: Is it Safe?
Consequently, the Animal Welfare Society of the United States ( ASPCA Lavender plants are poisonous to cats and may make them nauseous and sick. Cats lack the enzymes required to metabolize the chemicals linalool and linalyl acetate, which are present in lavender.
Lavender essential oil, which Barrack claims has the greatest amounts of toxicity, is even more concerning. Oils are the most dangerous because they may be swiftly absorbed via the skin or evaporated and breathed, causing acute poisoning.
The ASPCA claims that cats are particularly sensitive to essential oils and that large doses may cause liver damage, digestive problems, and even depression of the central nervous system.
Types of Lavender and Cat Safety
Fragrant lavender plants decorate window sills, interior areas, and gardens in a lot of homes around the nation. Lavender is a common ingredient in many formulas and is available as oils, sprays, and diffusers. Depending on the amount of exposure, each of them is poisonous to cats to varied degrees.
Some cats even seem to love lounging in or close to outdoor lavender plants, according to her. Although most cats won’t willingly consume lavender plants, if they do, it may result in gastrointestinal distress (typically vomiting).
Cats may become ill by only licking a lavender plant and without entirely eating it, according to Barrack. This also holds true for lavender potpourri created with dried spikes.
For your cats, the most harmful form of lavender is lavender essential oil. Since cats lack a certain liver enzyme that aids in the metabolism of several medications, including essential oils, Richardson claims that cats are more vulnerable to the effects of essential oils than some other animals. In addition to the quick dermal absorption that may happen, cats often groom off foreign items that have been put to their coat, eating the oil in the process.
Although lavender is often present in little amounts in diffusers and sprays, it may nevertheless get into your cat’s respiratory system. Although there are few research on the long-term effects of essential oils for both people and animals, according to Richardson, there is no conclusive proof on a safe amount of exposure.
According to her, “We do know that cats may be extraordinarily susceptible to even passive, dispersed aerosolized chemicals, leading to respiratory irritation in their lungs and triggering asthma.”
When sprays and diffuser droplets land on a cat’s hair, the cat may lick the residue and get poisoned with lavender. Richardson issues a warning: “Essential oils in active diffusers (which emit microdroplets into the air) or sprays may fall onto a pet’s fur coat, where they can be absorbed through the skin or eaten during grooming.
Signs of Lavender Toxicity in Cats
Symptoms of lavender poisoning in cats, according to Barrack and Richardson, include but are not exclusive to:
- symptoms of the digestive system including vomiting and diarrhea
- Lack of appetite (refusal to eat)
- neurological symptoms include tremors, staggering, and drunken-like behavior
- asthma, aspiration pneumonia, or a decreased respiratory rate
- Heart rhythm or rate changes
- liver dysfunction
According to Richardson, there is no known hazardous dosage for lavender oil. It depends on how sensitive each cat is to it and how it is exposed, says the expert.
Within the first three hours of exposure or ingestion, your cat may exhibit gastrointestinal problems quickly. Richardson notes that blood testing may not reveal liver or renal damage for many days.
According to Barrack, essential oils may potentially induce aspiration pneumonia when breathed. A lung illness known as aspiration pneumonia occurs when a cat inhales something foreign, causing inflammation of the lungs. Regurgitation or vomiting, which are also symptoms of lavender poisoning, are where it occurs most often.
How to Treat Lavender Poisoning in Cats
Richardson advises washing your cat to get rid of as much of the lavender product as you can if you detect your cat has come into touch with one. She then suggests contacting the The poison control line for the ASPCA Anytime of the day, call (888-426-4435) for further details pertaining to the case. “They will be able to advise whether you are safe to watch your cat at home, or if you should go to your local vet ASAP,” she explains. “They will also be able to advise you on the necessary next actions that may be done.”
They are advises transferring the cat to a place with fresh air and calling your veterinarian if your cat exhibits respiratory abnormalities like fast breathing, coughing, and/or wet eyes after coming into contact with lavender oil, spray, or a diffuser.
Bring your cat to the doctor for a comprehensive evaluation and treatment when you suspect lavender poisoning based on the aforementioned symptoms. A short and thorough wash may be sufficient if just a few drips come into touch with your cat, advises Barrack. But you should call your primary care veterinarian right away if you see any more, suspect aspiration or ingestion, or notice that your cat is displaying symptoms of lavender poisoning.
A physical examination and even hospital admission for blood tests and IV fluids may be required for cats with lavender poisoning. Depending on the results of the examination, drug delivery may help mend the liver and kidneys in addition to calming gastrointestinal distress.
Lavender in Your Home: Protecting Your Cat
Even while it could be tempting to diffuse some lavender to create a peaceful atmosphere in your house, it might not be the greatest option for your feline friend. Here are some strategies for guarding against lavender toxicity in your indoor cat.
Keep lavender away from cats. Lavender sprigs, both fresh and dried, should be kept out of your cats’ reach. Pet-friendly plants, such as catnip cultivate oat grass (cat grass), valerian, cat’s claw, and licorice root.
Lock up your skin care goods and lavender oil. Keep any lavender-infused skincare or bath items that you use in a closed cabinet that your cat cannot access. After using any products containing lavender on your skin, avoid letting your pet lick the diffuser sticks.
Avoid topical lavender products. Cat owners should refrain from using topical treatments that include lavender essential oils, according to Richardson. The best method to prevent poisoning, according to her, is to avoid giving your pet any topical essential oils, including lavender.
Avoid using lavender sprays or essential oils. Use lavender-based diffusers or sprays very sparingly, if at all possible. Richardson advises against using active diffusers or sprays that include essential oils.
- Find out more: Roses: Are They Toxic To Cats?
Every flower has its own distinct scent and allure. Some are beneficial to cats, while others are not. As a result, you need study more carefully if you own a cat in order to develop a safe and healthy cat.