As pet parents, one of the most important things we should do is to keep dangerous items ad toxic substance out of the way of our animal friends. But unlike kids, it is something that you need to keep during their lives instead of a temporary obligation.
There has been a lot of research and talk recently about whether air fresheners are safe for pets. When your dog or cat is abnormally smelly or gets sick, you might look for the cause in everything around, and air fresheners can be a possibility that is usually overlooked. Here are some facts that you need to know before deciding to use air fresheners in your home.
Are Air Fresheners Safe For Pets?
In general, most types of air fresheners contain VOC or Volatile Organic Compounds, which is an organic chemical with a high vapor pressure at normal room temperatures. Because of a low boiling point, it is easy to evaporate into the air from a liquid or solid form and spread to the whole living space. This might lead to a long list of health issues for your pets, including:
- Loss of coordination
- Throat, nose, and eye irritation
- Damage to the central nervous system, kidney, and liver
In recent years, many air freshener products include essential oils, which are produced from woods, seeds, berries, bark, and flower. Despite their touchy-feely name and potential medicinal effects, these substances can be volatile and really toxic to pets, especially cats. So if you have essential oils in your house, make sure to use it properly and keep it in a place where your cats or dogs can’t reach.
When using air fresheners around your pets, it’s best to read the instructions carefully so that you can use the recommended amount. In case of emergency, make sure to bring your cats or dogs to the vet as quickly as possible.
Signs Of Toxic Reactions To Air Fresheners In Pets
If your pets breathe in air fresheners, the might show a few negative effects immediately or after a few hours or days. When you use them for the first time, your dog or cat would withdraw immediately from the cower or area. Some common signs of air freshener toxic include sneeze, cough, nasal discharge, diarrhea, vomiting, lack of appetite, and lethargy.
However, these risks don’t only come from the air. They might also be triggered by contamination in those areas they fall – where your pet might lick, roll, or step – or from those products like cleaners and carpet shampoos that are produced for surfaces.
Compared to breathing, ingesting air fresheners can be more dangerous due to its effect on the gastrointestinal system. Some active ingredients or the packaging would cause diarrhea or vomiting, thus leading to neurological issues like unsteadiness, weakness, and agitation.
Natural Alternatives To Air Fresheners
There are many non-toxic and natural alternatives to air fresheners for ensuring the safety of your pets and keeping your house smelling clean:
a. Natural oils
A good way to keep your living space smell pleasant is to use oil burner to spread natural oils like vanilla or lavender. However, it is still important to ask your vet to make sure that whatever you are putting around your home will not be dangerous for the digestive system and skin of your pets. Also, keep in mind to place the burner in a safe place and out of their reach.
b. Baking soda
Baking soda can be a great option to eliminate smells anywhere in your home. It especially works well on the carpet where you certainly want to avoid using harmful chemicals because your pets usually spend their time sleeping or playing on its top.
c. Seasonings and herbs
If you want more than just neutralize the odor, consider installing a crock pot or placing a pot on your stove with seasonings or herbs in natural scents, such as orange and lemon peels, cloves, as well as cinnamon sticks. They won’t irritate your cats or dogs while still making your living space smell great and not irritate your pets.
d. Salt lamps
Salt lamps can be a natural way of freshening the air in your home by spreading a slightly negative charge. However, make sure to keep it out of reach of your pets because eating or licking the salt lamp would make them dangerously dehydrated.