Is Tea Tree Oil Safe for Dogs?

Have you used or contemplated using tea tree oil to treat a problem in one of your pets? If so, you might be interested to understand that recent reports have actually connected the substance to toxicity in dogs. Used without ample caution, tea tree oil can cause your pet a lot more harm than good.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil, likewise known as melaleuca oil, is produced from newly harvested leaves of Melaleuca alternifolia, or the tea tree, which grows in Portugal, Spain and Australia, along with Florida and other parts of the southern United States. Tea tree oil is a popular over-the-counter treatment thought to eliminate bacteria and fungi. It is used for a range of skin conditions in people, including fungal infections, acne, boils, burns, corns and insect bites. The oil also is sometimes added to bath water or vaporizers to treat respiratory disorders. It is sold in lotions, soaps, toothpastes and skin creams and is sometimes used in items marketed as cleansers or bug sprays.

Over the last few years, organic and other alternative treatments have become more popular in veterinary medicine. Possibly it’s not unexpected, then, that a few of the medicinal uses of tea tree oil have been theorized to animals. Tea tree oil products have actually been used by vets and owners to treat skin diseases in dogs, predominantly locations and skin allergic reactions. However caution is required when using the product in dogs.

Possible Side Effects

Most people endure the application of undiluted, 100 percent tea tree oil without any problems. The exact same is not true for animals. A report in the January 2014 problem of Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association documents multiple cases of tea tree oil toxicity in dogs and cats. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ Animal Poison Control Center database was the source of the information, which covers a 10-year period from 2002 to 2012.

The poison nerve center information consist of 337 dogs and 106 cats exposed to 100 percent tea tree oil, administered to the skin, orally or by means of both methods. Of the 443 animals exposed, 343 (77 percent) developed an unfavorable response constant with toxicity. Their symptoms established within two to 12 hours following direct exposure and lasted up to three days. The abnormalities most commonly reported were depression, lethargy, weak point, incoordination, muscle tremors and increased salivation or drooling. Less common symptoms consisted of vomiting, skin rashes, collapse and coma. Several animals were documented to have raised liver enzymes. Young cats and smaller adult cats were at higher risk for the advancement of more severe symptoms. Regrettably, info documenting results – how the pets fared after direct exposure – was, for the a lot of part, not available.

How to Use

Here is the ethical of the story: It is necessary to be exceptionally cautious when treating your family pet with tea tree oil (or, for that matter, any over the counter remedy or medication). To be safe, follow these safety measures:

  • Primarily, acquire the consent from your vet.
  • Never ever administer tea tree oil orally.
  • Make sure to examine that the product you are applying to your pet’s skin has actually been watered down to.1 to 1 percent strength. Most over the counter tea tree oil is offered as a pure, 100 percent concentration. In Australia, 100 percent tea tree oil requires distinct, child-resistant product packaging with a safety warning. No such preventative measures are needed in the United States or Canada.

If you treat one of your animals with tea tree oil and presume you are observing an adverse response, contact your vet or a family pet emergency situation care facility immediately. Just like any toxicity, the sooner your animal is dealt with, the better the result is likely to be.

Reyus Mammadli
Having engineering and medical education, in recent years actively engaged in the study of the development, reproduction of domestic animals. Special attention is paid to the treatment and prevention of diseases of Pets.
Pet Health
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