In their desire to have a sweet-smelling home, humans sometimes buy scented air fresheners. But unknowingly, they could be putting their cats’ health at risk! So many people seem to be unaware of the dangers posed by plug in diffusers that I felt it necessary to post a warning about them.
Plug in diffusers and air fresheners are chemical soup. It has been estimated that 86% contain phthalates, and airborne, they can trigger allergic reactions and asthma. They also contain formaldehyde, a chemical that is highly irritating to the nose and throat, and can cause respiratory illness. It’s also a carcinogen. All these toxic reactions are possible in both humans and pets.
Another chemical most major brand air fresheners contain is naphthalene, which has caused lung tissue damage and cancer in lab rats.
And then there are the volatile organic compounds that help these diffusers spread their aromatic appeal. In children, they can increase the risk of asthma. And they can sicken and kill cats. Many essential oils are extremely toxic to cats.
Think about it — these plug in diffusers are usually set right at nose level for your cat. And your cat weighs a fraction of a human, even a child. So the affect on humans is increased exponentially in cats. And there’s also the chance that one of those diffusers could break and spill those chemicals over an area where your cat walks, or maybe even eats! Is having your house smell like perfume really worth the risk?
If you have plug in diffusers and you’ve noticed your cat is lethargic, has a nasal or eye discharge, has lost their appetite, or is hiding, remove the diffusers immediately, and air out your house! Take your cat to the vet and mention that you had the plug in air fresheners (maybe even bring the packaging), so they know what sort of poison your cat might have breathed in.
Even if your cat isn’t sick (yet), it’s a good idea to be safe and remove the diffusers anyway. If you are determined to have them, do your research to make sure your brand doesn’t contain any chemicals or essential oils that can harm your cat.
Nothing really beats the scent of a home that’s freshly cleaned (with neutral smelling, nontoxic cleaners, of course), and well ventilated. Your cat (and perfume sensitive guests) will thank you.
Other posts you’ll enjoy:
- What You Need to Know About Cats and Lilies
- 7 Household Items Dangerous to Cats
- Unusual Household Items that are Poisonous to Your Cat