Is Burning Incense at Home Safe for Dogs & Puppies?

Incense is one of the most used options to aromatize the home, helping it smell pleasant or fresh. It has been used since ancient times and has been part of religious ceremonies. Incense was considered to have the ability to attract good energies and avoid bad ones, being used as an element of protection. 

While all of these are true, there is still an open debate about the effects of incense on dogs’ health. There are as many detractors as defenders. But what is the truth in it? Is incense smoke harmful to a dog’s health? In this article, you will know everything about the different smoke effects on your dog’s health. So, let’s dive in quickly.

The Truth about Incense on your Dog

Yes, burning incense has adverse effects on your dogs. The popular belief that incense is safe for both humans and dogs is false. It was found that 99 percent of incense smoke is made up of fine and ultrafine particles, most of which are highly toxic components for health. 

These particles are inhaled and become trapped in the lungs, which can cause an inflammatory reaction. It has also been discovered that smoke from incense is potentially more toxic than tobacco smoke as it contains certain dangerous chemical compounds that can cause genetic mutations. 

What are the Harmful Chemicals Released from Burning Incense?

Several chemical compounds are produced when incense is burnt, and they are as follows;

  1. Benzyne is released when incense is burnt
  2. Another is carbon monoxide, which is released during burning.
  3. Sulfur dioxide is another dangerous chemical released during burning
  4. Lastly, the Formaldehyde compound is released into the atmosphere.

The Different Forms of Incense

Without a doubt, there are different kinds and forms of incense to purchase in the market; however, the most common form is the stick incense. We have highlighted some of the other types of incense in the market for you, and they are as follows

  1. Grainy Incense
  2. Powdery Incense
  3. Incense in Dhoops
  4. Stick Incense
  5. Incense in cones
  6. Scented paper
  7. Charcoal Incense
  8. Coils

Can Dog’s Suffer from Asthma? 

Although asthma in dogs is not as frequent as in cats, yes, they can also find this type of respiratory disease in dogs, especially small dog breeds. 

This disease attacks the airways that carry air to the respiratory tracts. Mucus builds up in the tracts, causing further inflammation and pains. 

Top Causes of Asthma

Airway tightness in dogs can happen for no apparent cause, but certain actions of the dog or owner can cause this harsh effect. Some of the factors that may cause asthma in dogs are as follows:

  1. Grass, pollen, and ragweeds 
  2. Fungus and mold
  3. Incense smoke
  4. Chemicals from the storeroom, e.g., carpet cleaners
  5. Home remodeling products, such as paint
  6. Aerosols, e.g., perfumes
  7. Smoke from the chimney
  8. Dust mites
  9. Dander in animals due to a new pet or a visit from another pet

Asthma Symptoms

Dogs with asthma cannot breathe freely, and they also have several pains in their respiratory tracts. Symptoms of asthma are a dry cough or choking as well as:

  1. Wheezing
  2. Difficulty in breathing
  3. Lethargy
  4. Loss of taste
  5. Exercise intolerance
  6. Open-snout breathing
  7. Weight loss

Ensure you stop burning incense in the home if you notice any of these symptoms or better still, visit the nearest clinic for prescribed medication for severe condition

Precautions When Burning Incense in The Home 

The fact has already been established that smoke from incense is very harmful to both humans and dogs. Still, for those burning incense for religious purposes, utmost care and precaution must be taken to avoid unavoidable home accidents. Below are some of the precautionary measures when burning incense in the home;

  1. Ensure it is appropriately put off as the burning of incense is also a fire hazard. 
  2. Ensure that your dog is adequately taken care of, and the dog must not be left alone when the incense is put on. 
  3. It is crucial to place the incense on an elevated surface where your dog will not brush up against it.
  4. Be careful of the dog’s tails and fur when putting on the incense in your home.
  5. The room must be ventilated appropriately; this ensures that the incense’s smoke does not cause stuffing in the home. 
  6. Ensure to have a working fan and air purifier to filter the air in the home.

Is There A Safe Incense for Dogs?

It is sad to announce that there is no safe incense for dogs despite the different producers’ adverts stating that their incense is pet-friendly. The truth is that all incense produce smokes, which are practically harmful to both humans and dogs. The toxic compound concentration may be very low, but it does not eliminate the potential hazards. So be aware that the saying that incense is safe for a pet is a false claim.

What Are the Alternatives To Burning Incense?

If you really love your dog, then sure alternatives must be considered to ensure that your dog is in good health while your home smells nice. Some of the other options are as follows;

  1. Oil Diffuser: One of the best options to use instead of incense is the oil diffuser. It does not emit smoke and still presents a pleasant smell in your home. It uses aromatic oil and reeds to spread the scent. A couple examples would be peppermint oil or thieves oil.
  2. Scented Candles: This may not be a perfect option, but better as it does not cause excess smoke in the home. However, not all candles are made equal, as some are made with paraffin, which is also detrimental. Some safest candles you can find in the market are as follows;
  • Soy candles
  • Beeswax candles

Wrap Up 

In conclusion, to avoid unnecessary problems for your dog, you must follow the precautionary measure listed above. Ensure you observe your dog’s health condition and apply common sense when necessary or still visit the nearest veterinary store.

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