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Is Lavender Smell Terrible for a Cat? Flower Toxicity Revealed


Mar 17, 2023


Dr. Lorna Whittemore Photo

The information is recent and up-to-day in accordance with the hottest veterinarian research.

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Ah, lavender, the quintessential flower of relaxation. No matter if in your bathtub or a place spray, this aromatic herb is carefully related with peace and properly-staying. But for your cat? Not so a great deal.

The odor of lavender isn’t poisonous to cats, but the flower itself can be. Let’s speak about lavender toxicity, how it can have an effect on your cat, and what to do in an crisis.


Why Lavender Is Harmful to Cats

Lavender is made up of organic compounds known as linalool and linalyl acetate1. These compounds are aspect of what can make lavender smell so good. They also contribute to that relaxed emotion when you breathe in the aroma.

However, cats just cannot metabolize these compounds as perfectly as people can. When ingested, the compounds accumulate in your cat’s body and can result in severe wellbeing challenges.

Ingesting fresh new or dried lavender, crucial oils, lotions, or tea built with lavender can guide to 1 or extra of the subsequent troubles:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Gastrointestinal worry
  • Trouble respiration
  • Lethargy
  • Improvements in heart charge
  • Loss of urge for food
  • Weakness
  • Drooling
  • Muscle mass tremors
  • Dying
sick cat covered in blanket lies on the window in winter
Picture Credit: Germanova Antonina, Shutterstock

How Much Lavender Is Toxic to Cats?

Lavender toxicity in cats depends on the form of lavender ingested.

Your cat will want to consume really a ton of fresh or dried lavender to lead to problems. At most, they’ll get a tummy ache, vomiting, or diarrhea, especially if they are delicate to it. Accidentally ingesting a bit of dried or fresh lavender is almost never deadly for cats.

The threat is larger when it comes to lavender essential oils. These are considerably more concentrated than the flower alone and are, thus, a lot more dangerous.

Ingesting even a little total can trigger major distress to your cat, ranging from respiratory difficulties to liver hurt, seizures, and coma, and may perhaps even be lethal in significant more than enough amounts. Necessary oils can also irritate or melt away your cat’s mouth, nose, and eyes.

There are also additional prospects for a cat’s method to take up lavender important oils. Apart from ingestion, it can enter their physique via their pores and skin or by means of grooming their fur, further more escalating the threat.

Is It Okay for Cats to Smell Lavender?

The scent of lavender does not contain as a lot of the toxic compounds as the real flower or vital oils. But once more, it still is dependent on your cat’s sensitivity stage and the supply process of the scent.

For occasion, if your cat will get a whiff of dried lavender, it’ll possibly be great since the compounds are noticeably weaker in this form. On the other hand, if your cat will get a nose total of lavender important oil mist (like in a diffuser), it might get nauseous and encounter other destructive results. It is especially dangerous for cats with respiratory challenges such as bronchial asthma.

It is really hard to predict how sensitive your cat is to lavender, so it’s greatest to be careful and prevent exposing them to it in any kind, like the scent.

Calico cat sniffing smelling wooden bamboo essential oil diffuser health object wellness
Graphic Credit rating: Kristi Blokhin, Shutterstock

What to Do if Your Cat Ingests Lavender?

If your cat ingests new, dried, or important oil lavender, call your vet as before long as probable. They will ask you queries about the amount of money of lavender ingested and how long back it was eaten, so attempt to have as substantially information as doable.

If you can’t reach your vet, call poison control or your local crisis animal clinic.

In the meantime, continue to keep a close eye on your cat for signs of distress, these kinds of as breathing problems, decline of hunger, lethargy, and disorientation. Treatment method for extra critical scenarios may well include things like activated charcoal, anti-nausea medicine, and IV fluids. You may well also have to aid your cat with having if its mouth is wounded.



Lavender is a wonderful and calming scent, but it can be poisonous to cats if ingested in selected sorts. Critical oils are significantly perilous as they can easily enter your cat’s technique through their skin, eyes, or mouth.

If you suspect that your cat has ingested lavender, contact your vet promptly. In the meantime, check out it intently for any indications of distress and deliver it with supportive treatment if needed.

Last of all, the most effective way to continue to keep your cat secure from lavender toxicity is to completely keep away from publicity, whether to the flower, important oil, or lavender-infused goods. If you genuinely need to have lavender at household, make guaranteed it’s wholly out of reach for your cat.

Highlighted Image Credit history: Pixabay

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