Candle Safety for Cats and Dogs

Are candles safe for your pets? Generally. There are a few caveats, but you can definitely burn a great smelling candle without harming your pet. Just follow the basic guidelines below.


When to Never Ever Burn Candles Around Your Pet


Pets with asthma can’t handle candles. Or really any fragrances.


Brachycephalic pet breeds are those with short noses/flat faces. Think Persian or Himalayan cats and French bulldogs or pugs. These pets are more prone to respiratory issues and fragrances can affect these types of pets more than others.


Any pet with respiratory issues (such as bronchitis) are not going to love fragrances. Best to avoid.


Citrus with cats – unless you dislike your cat (cats hate citrus).


If you’re going to use a cheap, paraffin candle (think your mass-produced, low-quality brands). Paraffin is derived from petroleum when it’s used to make gasoline and it emits so many toxins and dangerous chemicals in the air that the American Lung Association has warned against them. Yeah, they’re bad for us too. And just a cheap way to use petroleum byproducts. Use 100% soy wax candles (like ours), instead.


When to Definitely Burn Candles Around Your Pets


If your pet doesn’t have asthma or other respiratory issues and hasn’t shown sensitivities to candles before, you’re probably fine. Enjoy those candles! Your pets might too – they can generally get some of the same benefits you do from a burning candle, depending on the scent.


Some Things to Keep in Mind


Burn only 100% soy wax candles (or beeswax candles). Don’t buy the cheap stuff like paraffin – it’s bad for you, too. Soy wax candles last longer, anyway.


Keep your candles in a safe and stable location. If you have a dog, make sure it’s not in a place where it can get knocked over or on a table runner that they snag every time they run through the room. If you have a cat, keep it in a place they won’t climb to explore or use a glass covering to foil their plots.


Avoid wicks with lead in them. When burnt, these wicks can release enough lead into the air to be above the EPA threshold. Even at low levels, this can cause harm to the central nervous system. Stick with cotton wicks that are lead and zinc free – like TR Candle Co Candles wicks. : )


Keep your room well ventilated – think burning candles in larger open spaces, opening a window, or burning your candle in a different room than your pet. Just don’t shut them in a closet with a candle as their only friend – they’ll likely burn your house down for it.


Don’t let them eat the candle. That sounds painfully obvious, but many pets explore things with their mouths (like toddlers), and they just can’t be trusted. Even if the wax is biodegradable and nontoxic (like soy), it still shouldn’t be eaten.


Bonuses of Candle Burning with Pets


Pets can benefit from some relaxation, too. Especially the neurotic ones.


Candles can cover up bad scents pets might leave in the home. Think litter boxes and accidents (clean up the accident before lighting the candle for best results).


Pets are individuals, too! They’ll have their own individual preferences and aversions to different scents just like we do, so explore different scents with your pet to see what they like.




Pets and candles can be a good mix, depending on the circumstance. Just don’t use around asthmatic or brachycephalic pets, or those with respiratory issues. For a bonus, explore scents with your pet to find out what they like, too!


If you love dogs, you will probably like our City of Dogs – Essence of Bark candle. Smells like cedar and 10% of gross profits are donated to Old Dog Haven, a non-profit for senior pups that need a home.




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