Do you use air fresheners around your home? Are you wondering if air fresheners are safe for cats? Or, more specifically are Bath and Body Works Wallflowers safe for pets?
It was something that was bigging me. So, I’ve done some research and covered everything you need to know in this article about air fresheners and the possible health risks for cats:
Are Bath and Body Works Wallflowers Safe for Pets?
If you’re looking for a quick answer, it’s no. It’s possible you’ve been using B&B air fresheners for a while without seeing any adverse effects, and that’s great.
But as I will explain in more detail throughout this article, there are too many harmful chemicals in them to risk continuing to use them around pets. It’s just not worth the risk, even if you’re not seeing signs of allergies of toxicity now.
Should You Use Plugin Air Fresheners Around Cats?
Cat’s aren’t particularly smelly animals. But, if you have more than one cat, or several pets in your home, chances are they’re leaving some odors behind them.
It’s tempting to use air fresheners to keep our homes smelling fresh to mask those pet odors, isn’t it? But, the bad news is that air fresheners are likely to do more harm than good to our pet’s sensitive range of senses.
Also, while we’re on the topic I discovered a lot of air fresheners are potentially toxic to use too! I’ve always heard speculation about this, but it wasn’t until I really delved into some research that I realized there are some potential risks.
So, if you use air fresheners, particularly Bath and Body Works Wallflowers, or know anyone that does – please read on.
What Is in Bath and Body Works Wallflowers?
It’s actually quite difficult to find a list of ingredients for Bath and Body Works air fresheners online. The issue with air fresheners and this applies to all brands and types, is that they contain loads of synthetic and toxic ingredients.
Most emit more than 100 different chemicals into the air. The worst of which, and these are particularly harmful to pets (cats) are called Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC).
VOCs are what break down the fluid in an air freshener and help it disperse into the air. Which, is then breathed in by all living beings and creatures within its radius. (that’s you, me, and our pets!)
To dig a little deeper on this, the Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) (source) states that VOCs are responsible for:
- Headaches, nausea, and generally feeling sick
- Irritating the throat, nose, and eyes
- Liver, kidney, and central nervous system damage
- Potentially causing cancer
There have been numerous studies into the VOCs being emitted by air fresheners, and a number have been found to be toxic and hazardous to our health. Pretty scary stuff!
Are Bath and Body Works Air Fresheners Toxic?
This is a question I kept seeing coming up online and with mixed responses. It’s hard to say that they are toxic, seeing as their air fresheners are allowed to be sold and do go through government regulations and testing.
However, as I’ve already discussed, they do contain chemicals we know to be harmful to us and pets. Also, as this article explains, they have sold products with harmful ingredients before that they were forced to stop using.
For the record, I’m not calling their products toxic. But, I for one do not consider them safe to use around my pets and will not be doing so.
Signs Your Air Freshener Is Toxic to Your Pets
The important thing here is to be aware of how your pet is reacting if you’re using air fresheners and to stop using them if there are signs they are toxic to them.
Look out for the following signs:
- Your pet doesn’t spend time near or in the room where the air freshener is
- They are coughing or wheezing
- You notice nasal discharge or the keep pawing at their nose
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Changes in appetite or mood
If your pet manages to come into contact with the fluid, or worse still lick it, this can be potentially very serious. So, if you are still using them keep them out of their reach. Remember when throwing them out that animals, not just your pets, might go through your bin too.
Natural Safe Ways to Get Rid of Pet Odors in the Home
Now I’ve told you not to use air fresheners around your pets, I know what you’re wondering. How can I get rid of pet odors in my home?
The good news is that there are a few solutions that don’t involve man-made sprays and deodorizers packed with harmful chemicals. Just try one or more of the following natural solutions:
Lemon Juice – It’s a classic for all kinds of household odors, and really works. Natural lemon juice draws odors out of the air and replaces them with a clean, fresh breeze of fresh lemon. It’s not a coincidence so many cleaning products smell of lemon, it’s very pleasant.
Baking Soda – Another natural household item that seems to have thousand-and-one uses. I actually use baking soda myself for odors, so I’m happy to recommend it. Just sprinkle a little on your pet’s beds, other places they sleep, and over your carpets before vacuuming.
Vinegar – One of the most powerful odor neutralizes. I’ve used vinegar to move some of the most stubborn stains and odors in the past. It really does work. Make a handy spray with vinegar and water and spray it on the offending items.
Airflow/Plants – Increasing the airflow through your home and adding some plants is a great way to bring a breath of fresh air in. The pros include being able to choose colorful additions to your home. While the cons are the maintenance, and potential for your pets to mess with the plants.
Related – Scents cats dislike (so you can avoid them!)
Has This Changed Your View on Air Fresheners?
I’d love to hear any feedback from pet owners who use Bath and Body Works Wallflowers. Or any other air fresheners for that matter. I know there is a passionate community for their products out there, and they do smell divine, I can’t deny that.
But the safety of our pets has to come first. If you skimmed the content above, the short answer to – are Bath and Body Works Wallflowers safe for pets? – is no, they are not. Due to the potentially harmful and toxic chemicals used in them, I will not use them with pets in the home.
8 thoughts on “Are Bath and Body Works Wallflowers Safe for Pets? (Research Inc)”
Since June 2019. I have had one dog diagnosed with heart failure. He is 10 years old and is 100% dependable on meds.
4 weeks ago one of my cats died from cancer. We had no idea she had. She was 8 years old.
Last week my 12 year old Pomeranian stayed coughing on a Tuesday night out of the blue. By Wednesday morning she had labored breathing. I took her to the vet as soon as they opened. She never got to come back home. Within a few hours she was 100% dependable on oxygen-her Heart was enlarged-her lungs weren’t functioning and her kidneys failed. X-ray showed a mass In her stomach that the vet assumes was cancer that had spread.
Tomorrow I’m taking my 8 year old Chihuahua to the vet cause he is coughing.
My 11 year old cat also is having very loud breathing. Kinda like she is snoring all the time. She will also be going to the vet.
I have been racking my brain trying to figure out what is in my house. two days ago I realize it might be my Plug ins. I immediately unplug them. I see a night and day difference with the coughing between my Chihuahua and my dog that has heart failure
I WILL NO LONGER USE THESE PLUG INS. And I will be telling everyone I know not to use them.
Thanks for taking the time to share your story Shannom,
That truly makes me sad to read your experience, though.
It’s about education and spreading the word at this point for sure!
I just want to thank you for your input on these plug ins.. I have a large home and I spend a fortune on these things. My dogs don’t show any signs of distress but just knowing that they are emitting toxic chemicals is enough for me. How can they sell things that are harmful to pets and or humans… this is despicable. Thanks again for you honest review.
I never use air fresheners, burn candles, plug ins etc. Until recently : ( bought a wallflower plugged it in and two days later my cat is near death. I am so disappointed in my ignorant decision and lack of thought upon using those poisonous things! My poor sasha girl is not in good shape and I blame myself and bath and body works! If you have animals, do not use them!
I have a question about your list of safe products. Aren’t lemons toxic to cats? I’m pretty sure they are, so that’s not a good suggestion.
Really sorry to hear that, Theresa. It’s not your fault.
Using a little lemon as a way to deal with odors will not cause cats any problems. They don’t like citrus smells, you’re right, so they may avoid the area (it doesn’t even seem to bother mine) but not toxic, no.
I just bought a bunch of wallflowers from the holiday sale at BBW. I have had 1 in my bathroom for about a year now, but bought several others to place around my house as I have 5 male dogs. This week, my littlest, a rat terrier came down with extreme respiratory infection with the symptoms you mention, coughing, sneezing, scratching at the nose. Yesterday he started sneezing blood. We have him on antibiotics, but it got me thinking about what the vet had said about air fresheners often being a cause. I immediately came home and unplugged all of my wallflowers and am taking them back this weekend. I don’t want to take any chances and it’s crazy to me that this happened to my boy just weeks after I put them in multiple rooms in my house, especially considering he never went into the bathroom where the 1 unit has been for a year. So sad. I hope this helps him. I am so worried.
Guys, this is absolutely true! I’ve been using B&BW wallflowers since college and I love them, but a few months ago my ex boyfriend’s cat moved into my house and developed these really loud, violent hacking/wheezing episodes that would last 10 minutes or so and sometimes end with her throwing up. I thought it was hairballs or a food allergy, but unplugged all my air fresheners too just in case. He (and his cat) moved out again in January and without changing her diet or grooming products, her wheezing/vomiting stopped. We wrote it off to her not being exposed to the stress of living with my/my roommates dogs. A few days ago I bought a bunch of new wallflower scents and plugged one in to my room again, and today/yesterday night have been waking up to my 70 lb dog doing the same wheezing that my ex’s cat did. The moment I open my bedroom door, my dog makes a beeline for the backyard and the wheezing stops after he gets some fresh air.
It can’t be a coincidence. Let your friends know!!
Thanks so much for your article. I have been using plugins for years