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Is Rosemary Essential Oil Safe for Dogs, Cats & Other Animals?

Essential oils have various uses in our daily lives. Whether you plan on deterring insects or plan on undergoing aromatherapy, you will need to use essential oils. Among all the essential oils rosemary essential oil is quite famous as it helps you reduce stress and relieve pain. 

However many homeowners have a doubt on whether rosemary essential oil is safe for dogs, cats and other animals. If the same doubt is mindstorming inside you, then you are at the right place. 

Today we are here to have a detailed discussion on whether rosemary essential oil is safe for dogs, cats and other animals or not. So, to clear out all your doubts, bear with us till the end. 

Let’s get started, shall we? 

Is rosemary essential oil safe for dogs?

Rosemary essential oil is considered safe for dogs. According to ASPCA rosemary essential oils are not harmful for dogs. Apart from being used in essential oils, rosemary has a wide usage in cooking. Additionally, rosemary can be considered to have health benefits for your dog.

Rosemary is basically a type of herb usually used in cooking. It’s hugely used in foods like roasted meats, steaks, vegetables and even herbal tea. 

Apart from cooking, rosemary also has a medicinal usage. And when used in essential oil, it is known to treat stress, relieve pain, help improve your brain function and blood circulation. 

You can simply diffuse the rosemary oil in your home and create a sweet-smelling environment. However, it is never recommended to apply rosemary oil directly on your pet’s skin or coat. This may end up causing irritation.   

Therefore, to avoid any sorts of uncomfortable situations for your dog, make sure your dog isn’t coming in contact with the  essential oil directly.   

Additionally, you can use rosemary essential oil diffuser around your dogs. As, rosemary essential oil is not toxic to dogs, using a rosemary essential oil diffuser will not cause any health hazards to your dog.

On the other hand, there are multiple essential oils that are considered harmful for your dogs. These oils include tea tree, eucalyptus, cinnamon etc. All these essential oils will be considered toxic whether directly applied or used in a diffuser. 

Oil extracted from the diffuser can still be considered harmful as the water used by the diffuser releases tiny oil droplets into the air. Additionally, these tiny droplets when inhaled can end up causing aspiration pneumonia and other health hazards. 

These issues can usually occur when the diffuser is used in a small space or used for a long duration. However, rosemary essential oil is considered safe around dogs.      

Can dogs smell and be around rosemary essential oil? Are dogs allergic to rosemary oil?

Dogs can smell and be around essential oil. Dogs are not usually allergic to essential oil. However, there can be exceptions. 

Rosemary is not toxic to dogs. Infact, in some cases consumption of rosemary and rosemary essential oil can be proven beneficial for your dog’s health. 

Dogs have around 300 million olfactory receptors. Whereas, humans only have 6 million receptors. Well, the conclusion is that dogs can smell essential oils. Not only that, dogs can be around rosemary essential oil.   

You will notice changes in their body language if they smell rosemary essential oil in the air. They will show signs like sniffing, raising ears, looking around for the smell etc. In recent years, essential oils have been used hugely on animals by veterinarians.   

Additionally, there have been degrees which show the uses of essential oil in veterinary purposes. 

Apart from all these, there are chances that your dog may be allergic to rosemary essential oil. If your dog is allergic to rosemary, essential oil can cause itchy skin and rashes. 

And in worse cases, you may notice severe seizures. The diagnosis may take longer. However, once diagnosed the allergy can be treated easily.

Moreover, as soon as you notice any sorts of symptoms of allergy, it’s better to contact a veterinarian. 

However, most dogs aren’t allergic to rosemary or rosemary essential oil.         

Is rosemary essential oil safe for cats?

Rosemary essential oil is not safe for cats. Rosemary can be used as a great flea repellent. However, no essential is considered safe for your cats. Rosemary essential oil has a higher potential to be toxic around your fur baby. Additionally, some essential oils can be considered safe if used right 

The worst part about using essential oils around cats is that they are highly toxic for them. According to a report by Dr. Karen Marsden, even if a drop or two of eucalyptus essential oil is brought in direct contact with cats, it can make them ill. 

Additionally, she added that cats do not have the enzymes in their liver to break down these oils. A piece of food that has rosemary on them wouldn’t hurt your cat as much as a drop of rosemary essential oil will. 

However, you can use them in diffusers. When the oils are in their purest forms they are known to be most dangerous to the cats. 

Additionally, it’s better if you do not use essential oils in diffusers. In case, the cats are allergic to rosemary essential oil the oil droplets in the air will immediately react with your cat and cause health issues. You may or may not notice immediate allergic reactions. 

Moreover, rosemary oil is toxic for cats and coming in contact with the oil might harm them.                   

However, in some cases you may use essential oils in diffusers. Before using the oil you need to ensure that the oils are not harmful or toxic to cats. Additionally, it is not recommended to add rosemary essential oil in your diffuser. 

Can you use rosemary essential oil for fleas and ticks on dogs & cats?

Rosemary essential oil cannot be used to treat fleas and ticks in cats. However, they can be used and known to be effective for the treatment of fleas and ticks in dogs. 

Rosemary essential oil is considered toxic for cats. Therefore, the usage of rosemary essential oil directly or indirectly on a cat may lead to causing various health issues. On the other hand, rosemary essential oils are widely used to treat ticks and fleas in dogs. 

You can simply add a few drops of rosemary essential oil on the collar and bedding of your dog. This will prove to be a great flea repellent. 

Additionally, if you want to fasten the process you can add 5-8 drops of rosemary essential oil to their bathing shampoo. This should help you get rid of the fleas in no time.        

Is rosemary essential oil safe for other animals or pets?

Rosemary essential oil is usually considered safe for other animals and pets. However, there is always a chance that your pet may be allergic to them. Therefore, try to bring your pets into direct contact with essential oils.     


Apart from your four-legged furry friends, you may also own birds. Therefore, before you use any sorts of essential oils it is vital to know whether it’s safe for birds or not.

Rosemary is usually considered energizing. Even the direct consumption of rosemary is safe for birds. It is known to be anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and also consists of calming properties. 

However, you must be safe while using concentrated essential oils. If the oils are ingested directly, they might cause health hazards in your birds.         


Rosemary essential oils aren’t toxic for rabbits. Apart from that, lemon,  lavender and orange essential oils can also be used around rabbits. 

Rabbits are sensitive to smells, therefore they will act as soon as they notice the smell of these oils in the air. However, essential oils like cinnamon, citrus, clove, eucalyptus, pine, peppermint etc are considered toxic rabbits.                 

Guinea pigs:

Essential oils are a no-no for guinea pigs. Guinea pigs can be hurt if essential oils are used around them. Therefore, it is not recommended to use a diffuser around your guinea pig. 

These little creatures are known to have a stronger smelling sense. Also, they are not safe to use around them as the oil molecules will end up in the guinea pig’s fur. This can lead to skin issues and itchiness.      


Horses and rosemary essential oil go hand in hand. Mostly, rosemary leaves are directly used in the shampoos and skin products that are used on horses. 

Rosemary is well known to keep ticks, and fleas away. Which is why rosemary is widely used in products that are used for horses. Also, they are considered safe for them. Therefore, rosemary essential oil can be used around horses.      

Final thoughts

Rosemary is an essential herb used in cooking. Apart from that it also has medicinal uses, which is why vets use it to treat pets. Although, in most cases rosemary essential oil is known to be safe. It is not safe for cats. However, it’s  safe for dogs and other pets.