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Alta Vista Animal Hospital
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TREE TEA OIL TOXICITY
Tea tree oil is marketed for healing hotspots, cleaning hair and treating some skin allergies in dogs and cats, but the concentration of tea tree oil (TTO) in most skin care products is low at 0.1% - 1%. Because undiluted TTO can be used topically without causing adverse effects in most people, some owners of pets may knowingly or accidentally use a concentration of 100% TTO to treat various skin conditions in their dogs or cats. A study indicated that use of 100% TTO in dogs or cats can lead to serious clinical signs. Some of these signs include central nervous system depression, weakness and muscle tremors. Younger and smaller cats are at greater risk of developing major clinical effects from the use of TTO. Until more studies are available to determine the safety of 100% TTO, it's use in dogs and cats is not recommended.
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