How to prepare and apply essential oils suitable for cats, those to avoid and those to be used sparingly. Everything you need to know about aromatherapy for cats.
Aromatherapy has been chosen by many people for some years because essential oils represent a valid remedy for our well -being. Cats can also benefit from these preparations but it is necessary to pay close attention for a triple reason: some oils that humans like may not necessarily like cat; some oils are harmful to the health of our four-legged friend; aromatherapy is not a substitute for veterinary medical treatment.
Aromatherapy for cats: what you need to know
Essential oils act on people or animals on a cognitive, emotional and physical level and, in most cases, they are nebulized in the air in order to release their aroma. The uses of oral aromatherapy are rare.
It must be borne in mind, however, that the cat’s liver is different from that of humans, so the oils used by humans are not always good for cats, indeed they can even become harmful. This is why it is always recommended:
- consult a naturopath;
- consult a veterinarian if in doubt;
- do not abuse with dosages;
- do not underestimate cat’s reactions;
- be well informed;
- avoid DIY;
- never give pure oil to the cat by mouth;
- do an olfactory test on cat;
- buy good quality pure essential oils in herbal medicine;
- use high quality carrier oils.
The smell test for cat aromatherapy
As mentioned, not all oils that humans like must be liked by the cat, moreover this animal has a much more developed sense of smell than people, so too strong aromas should not be used.
To understand if an oil is suitable for your cat, do a tolerance test: dip a stick in the oil, wet a cloth and observe cat’s reactions. If he tears, coughs and moves away then it means he doesn’t like this oil; if on the contrary it approaches and maybe wants to lick it then it means that the test is positive.
Essential oils for cats: those suitable, those harmful and those to use in moderation
Below we list the oils suitable for cats and what they are for, but before using them you must necessarily do the olfactory test.
- frankincense oil is the most suitable for cats and can be diluted with other oils;
- lavender oil promotes concentration and relaxation (oil with fewer contraindications);
- geranium oil to be used as a soothing agent and in case of cramps and tensions;
- Roman chamomile oil to improve mood;
- rosemary oil stimulates hair growth and helps the cat in times of stress if massaged with the rain technique (see below);
- valerian oil helps with anxiety and agitation;
- clary sage oil makes the coat shiny during seasonal changes;
- coconut oil has beneficial effects on the cat’s coat and is useful in cases of irritation, infections, dry skin, small wounds, insect bites and abrasions.
Here are some multiple preparations and use cases:
- lavender and cedar essential oil is a flea repellent;
- lavender and Roman chamomile oil has positive effects on the cat’s coat and keeps insects away;
- fennel, lavender, chamomile oil has a positive effect on the cat’s digestive system and manages to calm it down;
- rosemary, lavender and geranium oil can be used in case of ear mites;
- rosemary and frankincense oil is used to treat inflammation, small wounds and skin disorders;
- Rosemary and Palo Santo spray works effectively against ticks, mosquitoes and flies.
Essential oils not to be used in cat aromatherapy are: tea tree, cinnamon, peppermint, lemon, thyme and birch.
Limit the use of: bergamot, mandarin, oregano, grapefruit, juniper, sage, cardamom, orange, fir and pine.
How to apply oils in aromatherapy for cats
The essential oil must be diluted with a carrier; the best oils are: evo, coconut, wheat germ, sunflower, sweet almond, sesame and grape seed.
After preparing the mixture, proceed with the treatment and depending on the purpose to be obtained, you can:
- spreading the aroma in boiling water so that the vapors spread in the air;
- use a room diffuser;
- spray a few drops of the diluted oil directly on wounds, abrasions;
- use the rain technique. Wet your hands with a couple of drops of valor oil and massage the cat’s spine starting from the shoulder blades, then add 6 drops of essential oil and continue with the massage; from the nape to the tail.