Can You Use Essential Oils With Cats?

Essential Oils for Cats

Have you been wondering if you can use essential oils with cats? Cats and essential oil questions are pretty common in the forums I am a part of. I don’t own a cat but I thought I would try to address oils and cats for you, my readers!

I do know that cats have their own set of rules and mindset about things.  There is a lot of heresay about cats not tolerating and/or liking oils. Working with a holistic veterinarian is a great idea. If you are very skeptical, you could also for routine blood work and urine testing on your feline prior to exposing the cat to oils so that you have a baseline. I don’t think I would do that IF I had a cat…but it is an option.

One reason I wanted to write this article was to research a bit about Melaleuca alternifolia (Tea Tree Oil) and cats. I have heard that it is unsafe. According to Melissa Shelton, DVM,  she mentions in a well known essential oil reference guide, that use of non-therapeutic grade oils could be where the confusion lies with the safety of Tea Tree Oil. She mentions her experience with giving cats therapeutic grade Tea Tree with no ill effects. Now this is just one person’s personal experience so you have to continue to research cats and oils and find the best answer for your furry feline. You may want to consider purchasing an animal essential oil reference to have in your oily library.


Applying Oils to your Cat

Finding out if your cat will respond well to a particular oil can start with you wearing the oil. Does the cat come around or run and hide. This is a pretty clear indicator. Don’t give up on an oil after one application though. Remember Pavlov’s theory on Classical Conditioning where a situation brings about a reminder. One experience could make a difference in your pet. So use common sense and watch their response over a course of applications starting with you. When it come to diffusing starting slow is best and  in a water based diffuser. You can then increase oils and diffusing time as tolerated and as you see fit. It goes without saying to leave doors open so the cat can come and go as they please. Once you know your cat is responding well to an oil, if you want a direct application, rubbing their backs and getting oil onto the fur will serve as a wick and the oil will be absorbed rather quickly. Use proper dilution on your pets. Cats groom themselves so some oral ingestion may occur.

A Special Note on Cats

Cats lack a liver enzyme important for metabolism (cytochrome p450). This has to do with the ability to excrete products/chemicals from their bodies. Take caution if using essential oils containing phenols or eugenol constituents (Clove, Cinnamon, Thyme, or Oregano essential oils). Cats may be highly sensitive to these potent oils. They can be used but only in very highly diluted concentrations at least 95%. With that being said there is a “Kitty “Raindrop Technique that was developed by Leigh Foster and she used it on her rescue cats.


See Dilution Ratio Percentages for Animals here.

EO Litteroma for cats


Taming the Litter Box with Benefits

Litteroma is a technique developed by Dr. Shelton, DVM. She noticed that her outdoor cats would expose themselves to various plant materials, thus getting some of the plant benefits. Litteroma was developed to expose cats to the essential oil benefits and thus replaces toxic kitty litter chemicals and fragrances.  Add 1-3 drops of Young Living essential oil to 1 cup baking soda. Store mixture overnight in glass jar to allow blending. Sprinkle mixture onto unscented kitty litter. Provide a separate litter box to see how cat will tolerate and will not have an aversion. Remove plain litter box once cat is using essential oil infused box. You can change the oils as desired to meet and support your cat’s individual needs.


Young Living Products for Animals

Young Living has a product line with your animals in mind. Animal Scents Oil Collection is a line of specially blended oils, a salve for minor skin irritations, pet shampoo and more. You love your pets almost as much as your children and spouse, so treat them with the best products and support their well-being naturally with Young Living.