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Can Cats Eat Cinnamon

Can Cats have Cinnamon: Everything you Need to Know?

Cinnamon is one of the staples that we often find in our kitchen, but as a cat parent, have you ever wondered: Can Cats Have Cinnamon?

Cinnamon may appear harmless or even healthy, as it does have some human health advantages. When it comes to cats, however, this is not the case.

Cinnamon has not been classified as poisonous to cats or other animals by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). It can, however, produce an allergic reaction and a variety of consequences. To put it another way, you shouldn’t give your cat cinnamon in any of the following forms:

  • Cinnamon spice powder
  • Aromatherapy oil
  • Cinnamon bush
  • Cinnamon sticks, dried
  • Cinnamon-scented diffusers and air fresheners
  • Cinnamon-spiced human foods

In general, there is no cinnamon that is safe for cats or other animals. Inhaling, eating, or coming into contact with cinnamon components in any manner can endanger your fluffy pal. The kitty must keep away from it regardless of its age, breed, or overall health state.

Before we talk in detail about the side effects and reasons why Cinnamon should not be given to a cat, let’s first provide you with a brief intro on what Cinnamon is.

What Exactly is Cinnamon?

Cinnamon, also known as cinnamomum, is a spice that is extensively used in cooking and in human food. Cinnamon is available in two varieties, known as Cassia and Ceylon. 

  • Cassia cinnamon is more often used in North America because it contains more coumarin than ceylon cinnamon. Coumarin is a common ingredient found in rodenticide (rat poison) that is known to cause liver failure and hemorrhaging in rodents when sprayed in high dosages. 
  • Cinnamomum verum is a more expensive, less bitter, and healthier option because it contains only trace levels of coumarin.

Cinnamon is occasionally used as a natural medicine to treat diabetes or as a blood thinner in humans because it decreases blood sugar.

It is a popular spice with a slightly sweet, fiery, or strong aromatic flavor that is obtained from the inner back of numerous tree species in the genus Cinnamomum, which belongs to the Lauraceae family. The barks twist or roll as they dry, forming cinnamon sticks (quills) that can be sold whole or processed into a powder.

This spice, which is native to Sri Lanka, India, Brazil, Indonesia, and Brazil, can be used to flavour a variety of meals, including savoury and sweet dishes, snacks, breakfast cereals, bread, toasts, teas, and alcoholic beverages (rakomelo). It can also be used in prickling, as a condiment, or in fruits containing sugar, such as apples.

Interesting facts about Cinnamon

  • Cinnamon is the cinnamon tree’s dried inner bark. Cinnamonium cassia and Cinnamonium verum are two separate kinds of Cinnamonium cassia and Cinnamonium verum. Ceylon cinnamon is regarded as the original cinnamon kind.
  • Cinnamon quills are the dried curls of cinnamon bark.
  •  Trees of Cinnamon can reach a height of 60 feet.
  • Cinnamon trees native to Sri Lanka, India, Myanmar, and Bangladesh are known as Ceylon cinnamon trees. Cassia cinnamon trees are Chinese natives.
  • Cinnamon is produced in 99 percent of the world by Indonesia, China, Vietnam, and Sri Lanka.

You may think that Cinnamon is such a wonderful spice, then how come it is harmful to your furball?

Well, to give an accurate answer to “Can Cats have Cinnamon”? Let’s have a look at why it is harmful to cats.

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Why Is Cinnamon So Harmful To Cats?

Cinnamon is terrible for your cat’s health and can cause a variety of problems. Coumarin is a chemical found in it. Your cat’s body is unable to break it down, resulting in liver failure and other complications. Fortunately, the most prevalent variety of cinnamon in households does not contain high levels of coumarin (powdered cinnamon spice).

Nonetheless, cats can be harmed by cinnamon in any form, whether inhaled, swallowed, or rubbed on their fur and skin.

Cinnamon cats can be exposed to a variety of things, including:

  • Cinnamon oil (essential)
  • The bark of the cinnamon tree
  • Cinnamon spice powder
  • Diffusers with cinnamon
  • Cinnamon-flavored foods or beverages

Food and beverages, as well as powdered cinnamon, are the types of cinnamon with the lowest risk. Because the amount of coumarin in any of these varieties is so little, your cat is unlikely to experience an allergic reaction.

The usage of cinnamon essential oil poses a substantially greater danger. This has a higher coumarin content. You’re exposing your cat to a potentially toxic dose of coumarin if you’re diffusing cinnamon essential oil in your house or have used it on your hands before petting it.

So, is Cinnamon toxic to cat’s, and what really is Cinnamon toxicity?

What is Cinnamon Toxicity or Allergy?

Although cinnamon is theoretically non-toxic to cats, it can be harmful in certain amounts, particularly if your cat is exposed to the higher concentrations found in essential oils. 

  • Cinnamon poisoning can be particularly dangerous to cats for a variety of reasons:
  • Cats lack some liver enzymes that break down cinnamon chemicals, which can build up if your pet is exposed to a high dosage in a short period of time or a low concentration over time. 
  • Also, because cats have thin skin, they are more susceptible to cinnamon poisoning due to the easy absorption of cinnamon constituents in essential oils.
  • Cinnamon can cause rashes and allergic responses in cats and other animals when it comes into contact with their skin or mouth. 
  • Because cats’ skin is more sensitive and their sense of smell is more acute than humans’, they are more likely to respond to cinnamon or cinnamon odor. 
  • If your cat develops symptoms of cinnamon poisoning or allergic response after being exposed to cinnamon, you should contact your veterinarian right once.

What Causes Cinnamon Allergy or Toxicity in Cats?

Cinnamon poisoning is unlikely to occur when powdered cinnamon is used in the home. To trigger a response, a large volume of powder or inhalation of the powder would be required. However, as the use of essential oils becomes more prevalent in homes, cats are at greater danger of being exposed to cinnamon essential oil, which contains a considerably higher concentration of chemicals that can harm cats.

Inadvertently exposing cats to dangerous amounts of cinnamon can occur in the following ways:

  • Chewing on a cinnamon tree that has been treated as a houseplant
  • Chewing on a cinnamon stick that has been left in a cup.
  • Eating cinnamon-spiced human food
  • Chewing or licking cinnamon-scented potpourri or home accessories
  • When you use cinnamon oil in a diffuser, your cat inhales it.
  • After applying cinnamon oil on your hands, refrain from stroking or petting your cat.

Intentional exposure can happen for a variety of reasons:

  • Cinnamon is sometimes used to repel cats or pests in the garden and at home, and cats can be exposed to an excessive quantity through their environment as a result of this.
  • Cinnamon is utilized as a natural diabetes treatment (as it lowers blood sugar). This can sometimes enable, well-intentioned pet owners, to give their cat dangerously high doses of cinnamon in an attempt to treat diabetes in the cat.

It’s critical to realize that:

  • Because cats lack the same liver enzymes (glucuronyl transferase) that break down cinnamon compounds as humans, they are susceptible to a hazardous build-up of cinnamon compounds in their systems.
  • Cinnamon includes phenol, a carbolic acid that can cause skin and respiratory system irritation. Cats are especially vulnerable to this kind of reaction.

Symptoms of Toxicity or Allergy to Cinnamon in Cats

Despite the ASPCA’s non-toxic classification, the cat may suffer from cinnamon poisoning depending on the amount consumed. Cinnamon poisoning will undoubtedly be painful for the furball. Furthermore, if the absorbed cinnamon causes liver failure or other sorts of organ failure, the unfortunate kitty’s life will be jeopardized.

An allergic or toxic reaction to cinnamon and its chemical components can cause a variety of symptoms. Symptoms differ depending on the level and kind of exposure.

Allergic reaction to contact with the skin or the mouth:

  • Irritation
  • Rash
  • Redness
  • Burns

Inhalation reaction in the lungs:

  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Bronchospasm (breathing trouble)

Cinnamon poisoning symptoms caused by intake or absorption of cinnamon chemicals include:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Low blood sugar levels
  • Heart rate fluctuation
  • Blood Thickening
  • Failure of the liver and other organs

Diagnosis for Cinnamon Allergy or Toxicity in Cats


The capacity of the pet owner to detail any cinnamon exposure their pet may have had will play a big role in the diagnosis of cinnamon toxicity or allergic reaction. To rule out any other causes for your cat’s symptoms, your veterinarian will do a thorough physical examination and inquire about his or her medical history. If you have indications of organ failure, your veterinarian may do tests such as blood and urinalysis to determine how well your organs are working.

Treatment for Cats with Cinnamon Allergy or Toxicity

Treatment will be determined by the severity of your pet’s disease and symptoms as a result of his or her response to cinnamon.

  • If the cat has an allergic reaction, wash the affected area with water and a mild detergent.
  •  If a cat’s eyes get irritated, you should irrigate them well to remove the irritating substance.
  •  Steroids have been shown in other animals to exacerbate the rash caused by cinnamon exposure, thus they should be avoided in your pet.
  • If poisoning has occurred, the prognosis will be determined by the extent of damage to your pet’s organ systems. 
  • Treatment normally comprises supportive care until the poison has passed through your cat’s system, as well as treatment to alleviate any symptoms your cat is experiencing. 
  • If organ damage has occurred, the prognosis is uncertain, and your veterinarian will administer all available and suitable therapeutic care to restore organ function. 
  • Vitamin K is used to treat coumarin poisoning in pets that have been exposed to high quantities of this chemical, which is also found in cinnamon.
  •  If signs of coumarin poisoning (hemorrhaging due to blood-thinning) are present, vitamin K therapy may be beneficial.
  • If your pet is experiencing respiratory distress as a result of cinnamon inhalation or ingestion, airway management and oxygen therapy will be performed as needed.

Cinnamon Allergy or Toxicity in Cats: Recovery process

The extent of your pet’s exposure and any organ damage will determine how well he or she recovers.

  • Allergic reactions normally subside after a few days, and removing any cinnamon from your cat’s environment should cure the problem. 
  • Essential oil therapies for cats should be avoided at home; visit your veterinarian before attempting any treatments for your pet’s health issues. 
  • Rest, as well as any drugs and diets given by your veterinarian, will be required to restore organ function and reduce symptoms.

If Your Cat Has Come Into Contact With Cinnamon, What Should You Do?

If you’re lucky, the kitty won’t have any allergic responses or toxicity from the cinnamon. However, you must contact your veterinarian as soon as any symptoms appear.

The veterinarian may need to admit the cat to the hospital, depending on the severity of the problem. Fortunately, there are a variety of therapeutic options available, and even if organ damage has occurred, your cat can totally recover. Simply don’t ignore even the tiniest warning signs and don’t put off seeing your veterinarian. The sooner the veterinarian takes action, the better your pet’s prospects of recovery.

Is it possible for Cats to Consume Cinnamon Buns or Other Foods?

Yes. Kittens can eat foods containing modest amounts of this spice. However, make sure there are no dangerous elements in the cuisine, such as garlic, grapes, raisins, caffeine, nutmeg, cloves, onions, chives, or xylitol.

Your cat should avoid cinnamon rolls since they contain raisins, which are poisonous to cats. Furthermore, some include macadamia, which is harmful to these animals. Also, please, no pumpkin pies.

Finally, because they are strict carnivores, they should avoid sugary foods and eat items that are low in sugar and carbs.

If Your Cat Inhaled or Ate Cinnamon, What Should you do?

Don’t be concerned if only a small amount was consumed. Your pet will not be harmed. Check for indicators of respiratory or gastrointestinal difficulties in large doses or if inhaled, and consult your veterinarian.

What should you do if your cat has been exposed to a lot of cinnamon?

  • Keep an eye out for any of the symptoms described above if your cat has come into contact with cinnamon, especially the essential oil version.
  • If your cat gets any symptoms, even if they appear minor, contact your veterinarian right once.
  • Even if your cat isn’t displaying any symptoms, it’s always a good idea to schedule a vet visit to set your mind at ease.
  • In cases of topical exposure, your veterinarian may clean the affected region thoroughly to eradicate any evidence of cinnamon.
  • In the case of ingestion or absorption, your veterinarian will assess the level of toxicity as well as the possibility for injury to your cat’s internal organs. Your cat will most likely be kept in for treatment. Vitamin K is occasionally used as an antidote to coumarin toxicity, but depending on the severity of your cat’s condition, your veterinarian will choose the optimum treatment regimen.
  • The sooner you get care for your cat, the more likely he or she will recover.

Let’s end this article by answering three questions asked constantly by cat parents:

Do Cats Enjoy or Dislike Cinnamon?

No. Cinnamon is disliked by cats, and its strong aroma or smell, combined with that of other herbs or spices, tends to repel them. This is why some people use this spice as a cat deterrent, while others don’t. However, using cat-safe repellent sprays is a better option.

Cinnamon Oil: Is It Harmful to Cats?

Cinnamon oil, like any essential oil, is toxic to cats because the components are highly concentrated and thus more strong.

Powder: Is It Harmful to Cats?

If a cat eats a modest amount of cinnamon powder, they should be fine, but you should keep an eye on them and take them to the doctor if they show signs of illness or irritation.

Conclusion: Can Cats eat Cinnamon?

Anything containing cinnamon that you prepare, consume, or drink in your home is unlikely to cause an allergic or poisonous reaction in your cat. Just make sure any leftovers, such as cinnamon sticks left in cups, are carefully disposed of.

If you have a cinnamon powder spill, attempt to relocate your cat to a different room while you clean it up. Make sure you don’t acquire any powder on your hands that could end up on their bodies.

If you have a cat, you may want to avoid using diffusers or essential oils that include cinnamon. If you do decide to use these around your cat, we recommend using extreme caution. Make sure there’s no essential oil spilt where your cat could get a whiff of it. If you have essential oil on your hands, never pet your cat.

Knowing the dangers of keeping different varieties of cinnamon around your cats is the first step toward selecting whether or not you want to use it.

Because there aren’t enough evidence-based benefits of this spice for felines, it shouldn’t be given to them for therapeutic purposes, and it shouldn’t be given to pregnant or nursing cats.

We would conclude by saying, a visit to the vet’s office is a must before including anything new to your cat’s diet, as it is always better to be safe than sorry.

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