Herbs Bad for Dogs & Cats
The following unsafe herbs are potentially dangerous for use in animals. They are considered bad herbs for pets and care should be given in their use.
This herb (and its essential oil) is an effective insecticide and can be toxic to dogs and cats. It should NEVER be used in pets with existing kidney disease or if they are pregnant.
Tea Tree Oil
The essential oil found in Tea Tree is VERY toxic to cats and small dogs. (In fact, cats are sensitive to most essential oils and it is better not to use essential oils on cats at all.)7
For bigger dogs, use tea tree oil with care and for external use only. Always dilute the essential oil (0.5-1%) in a carrier oil (e.g. olive or almond oil). Test a small patch of skin prior to use as some pets may be sensitive to the oil.
Comfrey contains small quantities of alkaloids that can cause liver damage or cancer if taken in large quantities or for a prolonged period of time.
Since the alkaloid concentration is ten times higher in the root than the leaves, DO NOT use comfrey root internally.
Comfrey dried leaves, on the other hand, contain very little alkaloids so use the dried leaves if needed. But in addition, do not use comfrey in pregnant or lactating pets or those with pre-existing liver disease.
White Willow Bark
White willow bark contains salicylates, such as found in aspirin, which may be toxic to cats. Also, do not give this herb to your dog if she is taking any NSAIDs.
This Chinese herb is most commonly prescribed for pets with asthma or respiratory problems.
But beware! The primary ingredient in Ma Huang is Ephedrine which has been shown to exert multiple effects within your body, such as increased metabolic rate and fat burning.
Due to safety concerns, supplements containing ephedra — called ephedrine alkaloids — have been banned in several countries, including the United States.
The FDA banned dietary supplements containing ephedrine alkaloids because of their serious safety risks. The supplements were associated with cases of heart attack, seizure, stroke, and sudden death.
Tarragon is commonly used as a culinary herb. It has antioxidant properties, helps digestion, stimulates the appetite, and relieves stress and anxiety.
Used in small amounts, Tarragon it is safe for dogs to eat. However, do NOT use this herb medicinally (i.e. in large amounts) with dogs since it may slow blood clotting and can cause liver damage.
Wormwood is a traditional deworming herb but many herbalists find it too strong for pets. If used excessively, it can irritate the liver and kidneys, and may even damage the nervous system in extreme cases.
While wormwood used in small amounts can be effective in deworming, in larger doses, it can cause problems.
Don’t take a chance on harming your pet. Consider an experienced herbalist such as Natural Wonder Pets for your pet’s care.
If used in large doses, yucca can irritate the stomach lining which may cause vomiting and bloating.
Garlic in large amounts can cause Heinz’s body anemia in dogs and cats. Yet if fed in small amounts, garlic is good for the treatment of parasites such as fleas and worms, microbial infections, and in the treatment of cancer.
Don’t DIY your pet’s health. If you are looking for all natural organic remedies please check out Natural Wonder Pets.
*If you are concerned about safety of garlic for dogs, please note that research has shown garlic is toxic to dogs only if fed in large amounts and for an extended period of time. You can find more detailed information on this topic from my article Garlic for Dogs.
Note: Most of the herbs featured above are available from https://www.starwest-botanicals.com/ (I am not affiliated with Star West just an excellent provider of USDA organic herbs).
Originally posted on October 11, 2020 @ 8:58 am