Is Eucalyptus Oil Safe for Dogs to Smell?

Eucalyptus oil has been used for hundreds of years in traditional medicine. It creates a respiratory stimulant effect to help relieve breathing problems, including asthma and coughs. But is eucalyptus oil safe for dogs?

Is Eucalyptus oil safe for dogs

Is Eucalyptus oil safe for dogs?

In terms of using eucalyptus in a diffuser, most veterinarians and canine experts would not recommend using eucalyptus oil around dogs. Although it is a natural remedy, the ingredient cineole, the main constituent of eucalyptus oil can cause seizures, tremors, and other negative health effects when ingested or inhaled by dogs.

If you’re interested in diffusing the scent of eucalyptus at home regardless, many pet owners opt to diffuse it when their dogs are not in the room or place a few drops on a piece of clothing or towel that is then hung high up where their dogs cannot reach it.

Is eucalyptus in the shower safe for dogs?

Some people use eucalyptus oil in the bath, but that can be harmful as well. If your dog likes to drink bathwater (or any other water), you could be putting your pet at risk of poisoning.

Can you burn eucalyptus candles around dogs?

Avoid using products containing eucalyptus around your dog if possible, or be sure to keep them out of reach of pets.

Why is eucalyptus oil bad for dogs?

Eucalyptus is one of the strongest essential oils with a dominant scent. For us, a small amount is pleasant and calming, but for dogs, it can be uncomfortable and even overwhelming.

Dogs have a sense of smell far greater than humans. Dachshunds have approximately 125 million olfactory (scent) receptors in their nose, a Labrador has roughly 220 million and a bloodhound has an impressive 300 million. By comparison, humans only have around 5 million receptors.

Will the smell of eucalyptus hurt my dog?

Dogs can find certain essential oils to be overpowering and unpleasant. They can even cause irritation to the lining of the nose, windpipe and lungs. Other symptoms of eucalyptus exposure include:

  • behavioral changes
  • vomiting and diarrhea
  • pawing at the mouth or nose
  • fatigue
  • weakness
  • poor co-ordination
  • skin irritation if direct contact is made against the skin
  • digestive issues if the oil is ingested.

What oils are safe to diffuse around dogs?

While eucalyptus is not considered safe, there are some essential oils that are safe to be diffused around dogs:

  • chamomile
  • lavender
  • ginger

The safest way to use essential oils in a diffuser is to dilute the oil first; this reduces the potency of the oil and protects your dog from any side effects.

Which essential oils are toxic to dogs?

The list of oils considered unsafe for dogs is quite extensive since many essential oils come from plants or flowers with a naturally strong aroma. Even diluted, these essential oils should not be diffused around dogs:

  • anise
  • bergamot
  • eucalyptus
  • garlic
  • juniper
  • santolina
  • tea tree oil
  • wormwood
  • yarrow
  • hyssop
  • camphor
  • birch
  • pennyroyal
  • oregano
  • thyme
  • tansy
  • wintergreen

If you are unsure, it is best to speak to a licensed veterinarian or canine behaviorist. They will be able to give advice on which essential oils are safe to be diffused around dogs.

Conclusion of eucalyptus oil for dogs

The main thing to remember is that many essential oils are straight-up toxic to pets. If you have a dog, cat or any other animal at your home, it is important to take the time to research which essential oils are safe for them.

It may not be wise to use a variety of essential oils on them unless you know exactly how they react to different types of essential oils. Some dogs and cats will be more sensitive than others when it comes to certain kinds of essential oils, so it’s best if you can find out what their individual sensitivity is before using them.

If you have a dog or cat, it’s definitely best to stay away from essential oils. However, there are some that may not be as dangerous and they can be used safely with your pet.


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Hannah Elizabeth is an English animal behavior author, having written for several online publications. With a degree in Animal Behaviour and over a decade of practical animal husbandry experience, Hannah's articles cover everything from pet care to wildlife conservation. When she isn't creating content for blog posts, Hannah enjoys long walks with her Rottweiler cross Senna, reading fantasy novels and breeding aquarium shrimp.

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