Tea Tree Oil Toxic to Cats. If the cat does not quickly recover, the owner should seek emergency veterinary care. Treatment is based on the level of toxicity. 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. Cat unknowingly poisoned by essential oil. But is it safe? A woman had unknowingly poisoned her cat by using a diffuser in her house with eucalyptus oil to alleviate her head cold. Design: Retrospective case series. With pets, as with people, following label instructions is essential. I have described above how these toxic substances can get into the body of cats. Symptoms that develop in dogs and cats depend on the type of oil and concentration of the oil involved in the exposure. Treating Essential Oil Poisoning in Cats. Symptoms of Tea Tree Oil Poisoning in Dogs Unfortunately, the oil's popularity has resulted in larger numbers of households with bottles of 100 percent tree tea oil, and accidental ingestion or improper dilutions of this highly concentrated oil can be harmful to pets. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ Animal Poison Control Center database was the source of the information, which spans a 10-year period from 2002 to 2012. reed diffuser, candle). But is tea tree oil safe for cats? The neurological effects of the terpenes, as well as the thick quality of the oil, increase the risk of aspiration pneumonia if vomiting is induced. A report in the January 2014 issue of Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association documents multiple cases of tea tree oil toxicity in dogs and cats. Central nervous system depression and liver failure are the most common body systems involved. The problem is that it is only safe for cats in extremely low concentrations; lower than what would be needed to repel and kill fleas. Cats are natural explorers. The tree has been introduced to America and is grown in the southern states, particularly Florida. This small disclaimer is often missed and the rise of tea tree oil poisoning is growing. Tea tree oil can kill fleas. Tea tree oil, or Australian tree tea oil, has become a popular alternative treatment for many skin conditions. Although neem was not effective, no mites were still alive after three hours of exposure to the tea tree oil product. Last Updated on December 31, 2020 by Julia Wilson. This may include: The most common recommended use for tea tree oil in cats is as a natural alternative to flea treatments, especially on kittens who are too young for medicated flea treatment. Poisoning occurs in several ways; if inhaled or ingested, it is toxic, it can also cause burns when applied directly to the skin. Many of the compounds in tea tree oil are lipophilic and rapidly absorbed through the skin. If the substance is on the cat’s coat or paws, a quick bath with a degreasing dishwashing detergent (like Dawn) is absolutely necessary. In this manner, it’s a smart thought to abstain from utilizing essential oils in the event that you have a cat. Tea tree oil is often found in varying concentrations and high concentrations should never be used on pets. Confusion 2. My cat has potentially been exposed to tea tree oil and I’m hoping to get some insight. Contact dermatitis (redness, itching, swelling), If tea tree oil has been applied to the cat’s coat, decontaminate the coat with warm water and a mild shampoo, Anti-nausea medication to control vomiting. Tea tree oil, or Australian tree tea oil, has become a popular alternative treatment for many skin conditions affecting humans. , anti-inflammatory, antipruritic (itch). If the cat does not quickly recover, the owner should seek emergency veterinary care. I’ve been treating a cyst by taking sitz baths with a few drops of 100% tea tree oil diluted in the bath water.   Oils diffused in the air are inhaled and also collect on the fur, which results in your cat ingesting them during licking and cleaning. Toxicity of essential oils can vary depending on the oil, quality, and concentration. The terpenes in tea tree oil are rapidly absorbed through the skin and digestive tract because of their highly lipophilic nature.2,4,9 Toxicity from dermal exposure has not been pro- Tea tree oil poisoning in dogs, while treatable, can be mild to severe and can cause harsh symptoms, including organ damage. In July 2002, she took her Maine Coons, Buddy and Baby, to … If a cat owner suspects that their pet is in distress, they should move their cat to fresh air immediately. How to Treat a Poisoned Cat. There is no antidote to tea tree toxicosis, and treatment is aimed at managing symptoms. 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. Australian Tea Tree (Melaleuca Alternifolia) Oil Poisoning in Three Purebred Cats K. Bischoff and Fessesswork Guale Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation 2016 10 : 2 , 208-210 Vomiting, muscle tremors, and seizures are treated with medications as needed. Tea tree oil (also called melaleuca oil) comes from the tea tree (. Treat the house for fleas at the same time, as 90% of the flea life cycle is spent OFF the cat and in the surrounding environment. Toxicity can occur very quickly or over a longer period of exposure. Symptoms of tea tree toxicity in cats Depression Ataxia (wobbly gait) Drooling Vomiting Tremors Difficulty breathing Slow heart rate Decreased body temperature Muscle weakness Paralysis Seizures Reduced level of consciousness Contact dermatitis (redness, itching, swelling) In Australia 100 percent tree tea oil is categorized as a schedule 6 toxin. If an animal ingests tea tree oil, neurological signs can develop in addition to low body temperature and severe skin irritation. May Cause Hormonal Side Effects. In addition to the essential oils that you buy individually, they often appear in other household products such as paint thinner (turpentine is an essential oil) and insect repellent, which has a high risk of fatal reactions for cats, noted the CVMA. If your cat exhibits any of the symptoms associated with essential oil poisoning, or if you know definitively that your cat ingested essential oils, get it to the vet immediately. Common signs include drooling, vomiting, tremors, ataxia (wobbliness), respiratory distress, low blood pressure, GI ulcers, low heart rate, low body temperature, seizures, rear limb paralysis, skin irritation, and liver +/- kidney failure. Toxicity of essential oils can vary depending on the oil, quality, and concentration. Cats are generally considered vulnerable to essential oil toxicity because their livers cannot usually metabolize the compounds found in these oils. Cats absorb oils that are directly in contact with their skin. It does take some time, especially if the kitten is infested, but it is the only safe and non-toxic method. Animals with moderate illness may appear weak, have difficulty walking, or seem partially paralyzed. This is because the active compounds in tea tree oil called terpenes, making up roughly 50 to 60 percent of the oil, are mostly metabolized in the liver, making liver damage more likely. 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