“I had 4 very sick dogs. Woodford, my Dalmation was the sickest. Not only did he have vomiting and diarrhea but also had oral burns and was drooling profusely,” said Tonya Campbell, a dog owner who shared a harrowing tale on Facebook.
Just a few days before, Campbell had purchased a “Wallflower” from Bath & Body Works, an air-freshener plugin device that emits a steady stream of fragrance into the air. “Two days later I began to notice, one by one, my dogs having vomiting and diarrhea episodes. It was two more days before I realized the wallflowers were making them sick,” said Campbell.
Thankfully, following 9 hours at the emergency vet and extensive cleaning of her home, Campbell’s dogs made a full recovery, but had they experienced worse exposure, the situation could have been far worse, and she is sharing this story as a warning to other dog owners.
Let’s take a closer look at exactly why Wallflowers are so dangerous to your dog.
Are Bath & Body Works Wallflowers Toxic To Dogs?
If Tonya Campbell’s story didn’t answer this question: yes, Wallflowers and similar fragrance devices are toxic to dogs.
What Makes Them So Dangerous?
Wallflowers contain a ton of ingredients, both to produce specific fragrances, and to preserve and carry the scent. Most of these ingredients are not intended to be inhaled by anyone, much less your pets. While a single spray of these ingredients would likely not harm your dog, the continuous release of fragrance gives your dog no way of escaping the spray.
The fragrance settles on everything in your home, meaning your dog could be inhaling it while they play with their toys, lay in their bed, or just play in the house.
Toxic Ingredients in Air Fresheners
There are two key groups of ingredients in Wallflowers that can be dangerous to dogs. First, are the essential oils. Most popular essential oils (including eucalyptus, tea tree, citrus oils, pine, peppermint, etc) are poisonous to dogs in moderate to large doses. All of Bath & Body Works’ Wallflower scents contain essential oils, which are then sprayed into the air where they an easily be inhaled by your dog.
The second key group of toxic ingredients is preservatives and fragrance carriers. Used either to extend the life of the product or to give the fragrance something to travel on, these compounds are also extremely toxic to dogs, even in small amounts. Included in this list of ingredients are formaldehyde, phthalates, volatile organic compounds, and more. Is it just bath and body works wallflowers toxic for dogs?
Are All Air Fresheners Toxic To Dogs?
Plug-in air fresheners like Wallflowers and Glade PlugIns are never safe for dogs because they release a continuous output of fragrance. Aerosol and spray air fresheners are not good for dogs, but they can be used more safely, and away from your pets.
In general, you should never use an air freshener while your dog is in the same room. Remember that their respiratory system is far more sensitive than ours and that their tolerance to toxic compounds is lower than that of a human. Ideally, stay away from automatic or manual spray air fresheners for the sake of your pup.