As any cat will tell you, they are NOT dogs.They are, in fact; gentle, sensitive creatures worthy of our admiration. I know, I know, I slay me sometimes. But the truth of the matter is that they are not dogs and are truly sensitive. And by sensitive, I don't mean touchy, feely, (unless you are referring to their teeth and claws), let's talk about our emotions, but their bodies are much more fragile than that of other pets.
The biggest physiological difference is that cats lack the enzyme Glucuronyl tranferasses. Almost every other mammal has it. Without this enzyme, the detoxification mechanism in cats is slower or nonexistent. It results in the buildup of toxic metabolites which caused toxicity problems when certain substances are inhaled, ingested or absorbed through the skin.
That is why I look for products that are specifically labeled cat safe. This way I know that they do not need that enzyme to metabolize any of the product’s ingredients.
Here is a short list of what is NOT cat safe. It is by no means a complete list:
Essential oils and plant based ingredients as could be found in shampoos, conditioners, spa products, and aromatherapy. A good site for a list of toxic essential oils and plants is www.thelavendercat.com.
Any product ending in OL, such as Pine Sol, Lysol, and Isopropyl Alcohol (rubbing alcohol). They contains phenols. One of the many substances that their livers cannot metabolize.
Bleach can cause contact irritation and rashes on mucous membranes as well as damage the esophagus and lungs.
Calcium Hypochlorite as found in some mildew removers is deadly.
Products containing pine tree oils such as Pine Sol and shampoos.
Any cleaners that contain petroleum products.
Flea shampoos and treatments that contain Permethrin (synthetic version of the Chrysanthemum flower) and Piperonyl butoxide.
I love grooming cats, but I am always aware of what I use on them AND what I used to clean with. My first aid kit contains the necessities needed in case of accidental poisoning along with the number for Animal Poison Control. 1-888-426-4432.