Is Lemon Balm Safe for Cats?

Lemon balm or Melissa officinalis known by other names including balm, balm mint or common balm is one of the family Lamiaceae (mint, sage or deadnettle family) herb used in flavoring food and in tea.

This aromatic herbaceous flowering plant that has a citrus scent is also cultivated as an ornamental plant and its essential oil is used in traditional medicine, perfumery, aromatherapy and so on.

Is lemon balm safe for cats
Is lemon balm safe for cats?

Safety

Yes. Lemon balm is safe for cats. You can allow your feline pal to eat chopped fresh leaves or ground dried leaves. They are not toxic.

Although it is not poisonous to kitties, give them only a small amount. A half a teaspoon to one teaspoon depending on the size of your furry friend.

Since most cats do not like this herb because of its citrus smell, mix it with their food, use it to prepare a snack for them or go for lemon balm tea.

Benefits to your kitty

This herb is hail for its antimicrobial, anti-anxiety, antioxidant, antitumoral, and antispasmodic properties. Some of its benefits to kitties include the following:

  • It will help relieve anxiety, stress, sensitive stomach due to anxiety, and make your feline friend calmer and more relaxed. It is good after your relocate, during thunderstorms, or when you have new people around and so on as these situations may cause anxiety in cats. Try Pet’s Choice Plus Daily Calming Chewable Supplement which also has green tea, thiamine, and L-Tryptophan
  • Besides having anti-cancer agents, it has powerful antioxidants that will neutralize free radicals that cause oxidative damage to cells.
  • Owing to its antimicrobial (kills, bacteria, fungi, and viruses) properties, you can use it to treat upper respiratory infection especially in cases where prolonged use of conventional medications has side effects.
  • Its antiseptic and antimicrobial properties as well as being an insect and fly repellant makes it good for wounds and cuts.
  • Being antispasmodic, it will help in improving digestion. Also, since it has dietary fiber, it will help deal with furballs.

In any of the above uses, talk to your vet first for diagnosis. He or she may also help you in coming up with the right dosages.

Melissa oil

Melissa officinalis oil often referred to as Melissa oil has many benefits too. However, before using it, talk to your vet since many essential oils are not safe to cats.

Conclusion

Cats can eat lemon balm in small amounts. It is safe. However, an excessive amount may counteract the various benefits causing stomach upset, diarrhea and vomiting.

Finally, while this herb rarely causes allergic reactions, some kitties may be allergic to it. Check for any signs of allergies and stop its use in case they are allergic.

See also

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