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Dogs, cats and bio-oil.

Species: Dog
Breed: Border Collie and Ca
Age: 5-8 years
Hi, Dr. Marie:

I have a question for you regarding a product called Bio Oil. I have been using it to reduce the appearance of scars and I am wondering if this product would be harmful to either my dog or my cat if they were to lick the treated areas during the night or lick the clothing I wore when I treated myself (I keep the bottle locked away, so there's no chance of them ingesting a large amount). They're very licky animals :o) Here is a list of the ingredients:

Calendula Oil
Lavender Oil
Rosemary Oil
Chamomile Oil
Vitamin A
Vitamin E
Oil base
Mineral Oil
Triisononanoin
Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate
Isopropyl Myristate
Glycine Soja Oil
Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil
BHT
Bisabolol
Fragrance (Rose)
Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone
Amyl Cinnamal
Benzyl Salicylate
Citronellol
Coumarin
Eugenol
Farnesol
Geraniol
Hydroxycitronellal
Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde
Limonene
Linalool
Color (Orange)
D&C Red No.17 (CI 26100)

Sorry for the long list--I just have no idea if I should avoid using this product or not.

Thanks so much for your advice.

Blessings,
Julie


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Well this is an interesting question!

I did a search for these ingredients and found out a few things:

-Rosemary oil can be very irritating to the gastrointestinal tract, but only in large amounts.

-Chamomile oil can cause some mild intestinal upset.

-I am not completely certain, but I believe that Benzyl Salicylate is closely related to aspirin and it is not a good idea for cats to ingest significant amounts of any aspirin like products.

-Coumarin ingestion in decent amounts can make it hard to clot blood and therefore lead to bleeding issues.

-Limonene can be very toxic if ingested (but again usually has to be in large amounts). In large amounts, if it gets on the skin of a cat or dog it can be very irritating.

So, does this mean that Bio-Oil is not safe to have around your pets? In my opinion, it is very unlikely that your dog or cat would get sick from licking your skin that had had Bio-Oil applied. I definitely wouldn't worry about them licking your clothing. The amount of the above ingredients that would be ingested would be very minimal.

I definitely wouldn't use this product directly on a cat or a dog. But, I think the amount of product that would be ingested by the occasional lick of your skin from a cat or dog would be extremely small.

If I were you, I would try really hard not to let the pets lick you within 30-60 minutes of applying the product. After that time, the majority of the ingredients will be absorbed and the amount that could be ingested by one of your pets licking you really should be insignificant.

Hope that helps!

Dr. Marie



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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.