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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 26343
Experience:  I am a small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats and am happy to discuss any questions you have.
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Is it safe to put peppermint oil on my cats bed to help prevent

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Is it safe to put peppermint oil on my cats bed to help prevent fleas

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

I am very sorry to hear that Monica and yourself are struggling with the fleas in your home. I appreciate you have had a professionals in recently, so hopefully the end of the flea fight is in sight. (And hopefully the professionals did use an product with IGR -- insect growth regulator -- to make sure that flea eggs and larvae are killed and not just adults. If not, that might be a consideration here).

Now in regards XXXXX XXXXX specific question, I would not advise using peppermint oil on Monica. First, this is a very pungent oil that will be abrasive to her delicate sense of smell (in fact it is an oil some exterminators use to drive rodents away, its so pungent). Furthermore, it is an oil that would not be absorbed into the skin (like the flea treatments) therefore you'd have to treat in more then one spot. And this could lead to a serious issue because cats are specifically very sensitive to this type of oil and if she manages to lick any off her coat, it could cause her some harm. Most commonly we see ingestion cause stomach upset (vomiting, diarrhea) but in high doses peppermint oil can affect her nervous system and even cause liver damage. Furthermore, some peppermint oil preparations contain other properties (ie salicylic acid) that are potentially harmful to cats and can negatively effect their kidney function and cause GI upset and ulcers themselves.

Overall, I appreciate these fleas have been a nightmare but I would strongly advise not risking Monica's health with peppermint oil. Instead, make sure your exterminators have used an IGR preparation (and use one if they have not) to kill all flea life stages. And if the Stronghold is not protecting her from the fleas (if the fleas have developed an immunity to this product) then consider changing to a flea treatment (ie Advantage II, Frontline Plus, Advantage Multi) that these fleas have not been exposed to before.

I hope this information is helpful.

If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!

All the best,

Dr. B.


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