Is Perfume Bad For Dogs? (Be Safe Not Sorry)

Written By Nazia Haque

We love perfumes but not at the cost of hurting our furry little critters.

Being a perfume enthusiast and owning pets myself, I have been in your shoes. We all know that dogs are gifted sniffers. This superpower can be at a cross with perfumes.

I know there must be so many questions juggling in your mind, so keep reading to find the answers.
Is Perfume Bad For Dogs? (Be Safe Not Sorry)

Is Perfume Bad For Dogs?

According to an article by Dr. Crista DeJoia, a Veterinarian, perfume is bad for dogs because it can make them allergic, lethargic, or even nauseous and lose appetite. Many toxic chemicals in perfume like styrene phthalates, musk ketone, and many more are harmful to our dogs.

Also, you can check out Can You Use Essential Oils As Perfumes?

Why Is Perfume Bad For Dogs?

Dr. Charlotte Flint, Associate Director of Veterinary Services, says that both skin exposure and ingestion of perfumes can be poisonous for our dogs.

Perfume is terrible for dogs for a lot of reasons. Also, we need to acknowledge that dogs have a different immune system than us.

One of the essential substances used to make perfume is essential oil. It is an organic compound extracted from plants.

However, the ingredients used to make essential oils are hazardous for dogs. The chemicals inside are rapidly absorbed orally or through the skin. The ingredients are as such:

  1. Oil of cinnamon
  2. Citrus
  3. Pennyroyal
  4. Peppermint
  5. Pine
  6. Sweet Birch
  7. Tea tree
  8. Wintergreen
  9. Ylang Ylang

Also, most of these chemicals metabolize through the skin.

And very young dogs, puppies, and dogs with liver diseases are more prone to its harmful effects.

What can you do if your dog has been in contact with essential oil?

Here’s what you gotta do:

  • Go to a Vet IMMEDIATELY, because your dog would need treatment as soon as possible.
  • Do not force your dog to vomit.
  • Do not give your dog activated charcoal.
  • Seal materials that made your dog sick and take them along with you to the vet.
  • Make sure you have no oil or any substance that can harm your dog.

Furthermore, a dog’s sense of smell is way keener than humans. This sense of smell is an essential trait of survival for dogs.

Dogs can smell anything, things that are miles away. That’s how heightened smells are for them.

So, for us, our expensive perfumes are a pleasant treat, but those fragrances can blind our dogs.

Don’t be afraid, not blind literally, but the strong perfume can make dogs lose their way.

If there are too many fragrances, it can be difficult for a dog to pick up the scent it needs to. And that would just confuse your dogs, something you want to avoid.

This confusion can irritate your dog, and for a service, avoiding unnecessary scents is a must.

Can You Put Human Perfumes On Dogs?

No, you can not put human perfumes on dogs. Human fragrances are for humans, not for dogs. You need to be very clear about that. Dogs are agitated when human perfumes are sprayed on them. It can also irritate or burn their skin and mouth. There are also many other harmful effects.

It is difficult for our dogs to let us know what they feel, so we need to pay extra attention.

Human perfumes can have emotional and physical effects on our pets.

From health issues to emotional trauma, our four-pawed friends can suffer a great deal because of our ignorance.

That is why it is crucial to acknowledge that going the extra mile for our dogs is worth it.

Have you noticed your dog rolling in the grass right after a bath? Your dog doesn’t do that to get dirty but to get rid of the shampoo’s scent, which hides its scent.

A dog’s scent is a part of its identity, so don’t make your dog have an identity crisis.

Yes, that’s how uncomfortable they feel. So, next time opt out of fragrance-free products for your dogs.

However, some say an occasional spray of perfume behind the ears of your dog is okay.

But why take the risk of putting the life of your beloved dogs in danger?

I mean, I would never take chances with my pets. As pet parents, we must do what’s right for them. No questions asked!

Follow our guide to know Does Perfume Have Alcohol In It?

What Happens If You Put Perfumes On Dogs?

Dogs are very sensitive to smell. Many perfumes can come off too strong for dogs, and that can be overwhelming for them.

It can irritate dogs to the extent that they may even stop eating because the perfume’s high intensity can make them feel nauseous and unwell.

Dr. Crista DeJoia, HOV Staff Veterinarian, has written an article, Perfume, and Pets, where she further discusses the equation between perfumes and dogs.

According to Dr. Crista, dogs and cats can have allergic reactions to scented shampoos, sprays, and lotions.

It can cause redness in their skin, itching, or make them bite the affected area. Some more effects include:

  • Vomiting
  • Difficult in breathing
  • Difficult in walking
  • Drooling
  • Muscle tremors

Did you know since 1970, the suffering of dogs and cats have been increasing steadily? Because a vast amount of scented products were manufactured.

Just thinking about these harmful effects is making me tremble. So imagine how much pain our pets can be in because of what we call luxury items.

Furthermore, we all know a dog’s remarkable ability to remember smells. It can also easily distinguish familiar smells.

But perfumes can hide the familiarity in your smell that can upset your dog.

So, both your dog’s mental and physical well-being is jeopardized because of perfumes.

Is Perfume Toxic For Dogs?

It is a fact that most fragrant products are toxic. And not just for our dogs but for us as well. Many fragrances have hundreds of chemicals, which are like slow poison for our dogs.

Most artificial fragrances are made from petrochemicals that come from crude oil, a very toxic substance.

The substances in the perfumes are so volatile that they can be directly absorbed through the skin.

Furthermore, many fragrance compounds have a similar chemical structure to pesticides, making them very unsafe.

An article published in 2010 by the consumer watchdog, Environment Working Group, states that 3613 ingredients hide behind the word fragrance.

EWG rates toxic chemicals according to risk. And the list goes as follows:

  1. Acetone
  2. Benzaldehyde
  3. Benzyl acetate
  4. Benzyl alcohol
  5. Campho
  6. Toluene
  7. Ethanol
  8. Ethyl acetate
  9. Limonene
  10. Linalool
  11. Styrene
  12. Methylene Chloride
  13. Phthalates

These substances can cause numerous damages to our dogs. Such as:

  • Central Nervous System Disorder
  • Kidney Damage
  • Respiratory Problems
  • Gut Irritations
  • Dizziness
  • Endocrine Disruption

These substances are often a factor in many chronic illnesses in dogs, which many veterinarians address. What smells good for us can be fatal for our pup.

It is always better to go for natural ingredient products. Pure organic products are a better choice for our health.

Just imagine if chemicals in the perfumes can be harmful to us humans, those chemicals must be ten times more toxic for our dogs.

Nonetheless, you should also be aware that dogs are often allergic to human perfumes and other scented products. It can lead to serious problems for your dogs.

On a serious note, you should also be cautious that your dog doesn’t ingest any of your perfume. God forbid if your dog ingests even a bit can be very harmful.

Such accidents can lead to severe damage since perfumes are very toxic for dogs.

So, you must maintain your dog’s safety and well-being to ensure your lovely dogs will not be exposed to toxicity.

Looking for something different? Then check out our post about Where Can I Get Perfume Samples?

Can Dogs Wear Perfume?

Yes, dogs can wear perfumes. There are many fragrances especially made for dogs. These are unique types of scents that are created from substances suitable for them. So, your beloved dogs can smell good without having a fear of harming their health and mood.

Most dog perfumes are alcohol-free and sulfate-free; acidic substances are not considered.

Also, they are made eco-friendly and hypoallergenic.

However, make sure to get Veterinarian certified dog perfumes to guarantee the wellness of your dogs.

Since dog perfumes are not harmful, it is acceptable to want your dogs to smell great with these perfumes’ help.

Why should humans only smell nice, right!

Is Dog Perfume Safe For Dogs?

Yes, Dog perfumes are indeed safe for dogs. They are specially made for dogs, and these perfumes don’t irritate your dog’s skin, eyes, or nose. These extraordinary perfumes come in handy to make your dog smell amazing. They are absolutely safe and very trendy.

After all, it’s about time; our pets should have the treatment they deserve.

Well, our dogs can be stinking adorable monsters, but that doesn’t mean that you can just spray anything on them.

That’s where dog perfumes become of great use. You just don’t get rid of the stink but also give your dog a refreshing smell.

The ingredients used in dog perfume to make them smell great are all tried and tested.

Many scents have positive effects on dogs. Such as:

  • Aromatherapy using the ambient odor of lavender and chamomile has been shown to lessen travel-induced anxiety in dogs and decrease stress in shelter dogs.
  • Ambient citrus scents can ease separation anxiety in dogs.

There are a few designer doggy scents as well. I mean, why not!

Dogs are man’s best friend, and they deserve all the best things in the world.

Nonetheless, you must remember that dog perfumes are poles apart from human perfumes. And they are specified for all the right reasons.

Also, check out our separate post on Why Are Perfumes So Expensive?

Sniff Not Weep

Dogs are hypersensitive to smell. So, we need to make sure that our dogs are comfortable.

Heavily scented products can cause skin reactions, nausea, lethargy, or even airway irritation.

Hence, our perfumes can cause some severe health issues for our dogs. So, keep your fragrances at a safe distance from your dogs.

Also, we know that dogs communicate through smell; thus, it is important not to disrupt them.

However, if you do worry a lot about your dog’s odor, then rest assured.

There are plenty of safe products on the market that can make your pooch smell great. Like, unscented shampoo, waterless shampoos, wipes, or dog perfumes.

Since mild ambient fragrances of citrus, chamomile, and lavender have been proving to have calming effects on pets without harmful side effects.

Make sure to treat your dog right and keep your beloved pets away from harm’s way.

I look forward to your thoughts and opinions, so share them in the comment section below.

About The Author
Nazia is passionate about perfumes. Her love for perfumes started with her father whom she lost in 2017. She’d often reminisce his memories with the help of his fragrances’. Writing about fragrances makes her happy as she can share its wonders with the world. She also loves reading sci-fi novels and traveling.

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