Are humidifiers safe for dogs? Investing in a home humidifier is one of the best investments to make, especially if you live in low humidity areas.
Sometimes low temperatures necessitate us to run a heater to warm our houses continuously, and this can also contribute to dry air in our houses.
A humidifier will improve the air quality you breathe and improve your health. However, is a humidifier safe for your dog as well?
While you are looking to make your home habitable for your family, your pets come in as an extension to your family.
This means you also have to take care of them, ensure the air quality they are breathing is good for them, and don’t suffer dry skin complications. Yes, humidifiers are safe for dogs.
Herein is what you need to know.
What Does A Humidifier Achieve?
Ideally, a humidifier is designed to increase the moisture content in an office or home to achieve a healthy and comfortable environment.
According to the EPA, indoors' desired humidity level should lie between 30% to 60%, and this range is ideal for homeowners and their pets.
Rising the humidity levels to beyond 60% may create the best mildew, mold, and harmful bacterial infestation environment.
On the other hand, humidity levels below 30% may cause breathing complications and even lead to dry skin complications to your family and pets.
Certain climatic conditions can lower the relative humidity levels of your home.
For instance, during the winter season, the cold air lacks adequate moisture than when it is naturally warm.
In other words, humidity levels drop during the winter months.
The situation worsens indoors when we run space heaters to increase the temperatures, which drops the relative humidity levels even more.
Low humidity levels aren't good for your wood furniture, family members, and even your dogs.
You should ensure that you are using filtered or purified water for the best results.
Tap water is discouraged because it may contain minerals and microorganisms, which may be harmful when dispersed into the air.
It is also good to know what to put in a humidifier to prevent mould.
Additionally, minerals present in unfiltered water may also clog your humidifier, rendering it useless after short use.
Humidifiers work by releasing water vapor into the air, contributing to increasing moisture content in the air in your home.
Moisture air can also make your house feel a little bit warmer than dry air.
How To Tell Your Dog Needs A Humidifier
Now that you know a humidifier is safe for your dog, are there any signs or symptoms that your dog is suffering from complications that a humidifier can soothe?
Just like a human being, your dog can suffer from seasonal reactions.
When the air in your house is dry, your dogs are likely to experience dry skin complications and stuffy noses.
Here below are signs that your dog is suffering from dry air complications;
Dry skin complications on your pet is a telltale sign that the air inside your house is less humid. Some of the signs include;
- Pimples on the dog skin
- Dandruff in its fur
- Itchy skin
- A dog experiencing hair loss
- Scaling among other signs
Even though the above signs indicate air with low moisture content in your home, there could be other health complications at play.
Running a humidifier in your home should eliminate the dry skin complications in your dogs.
If bringing a humidifier does not stop the signs, consider visiting a veterinarian.
- Frequent sneezes
- Runny noses
- Swellings on the face
- Breathing complications, among others
These are the compelling reason your dog is suffering from the dry air in your home, and you need to get a humidifier.
As the humidifier will enhance moisture content in the air, it will also help your dogs' nasal passages, allowing them to breathe normally and dispelling cold symptoms.
Running a humidifier in a lower humid house may also help combat bacteria and viruses that rapidly spread through dry air.
However, it's important to note that a humidifier will only offer relief to mild and controllable allergic symptoms.
For severe cases, you need to consult a veterinarian.
Which Types Of Humidifiers Are Available?
There are different types of humidifiers in the market. When looking to invest in a humidifier to serve both your family members and your pets, get the right one.
The common types of humidifiers are;
- Warm mist humidifiers
- Cool mist humidifiers
- Evaporative humidifiers
- Ultra-sonic humidifiers
- Warm mist Humidifier
This humidifier works by heating water to its boiling point. Warm vapor escapes through the nozzle to humidify the air around it.
Besides humidifying the room, this type of humidifier kills any harmful bacteria in the air and warms up the room, thanks to the warm steam it emits.
For this humidifier to be effective, it must constantly boil the water or maintain the boiling point temperature. This can be expensive to run in the long run.
Additionally, warm mist humidifiers are not ideal for dogs and a family person with small children. Should the humidifier be knocked by a dog or a person, it will likely cause burns.
If you need to use this type of humidifier in your home, you should ensure that it is out of reach for dogs and toddlers.
You should also ensure it does not overheat.
- Cool Mist Humidifiers
It is the best type of humidifier to use in a home with pets since it is safe to use.
Run the humidifier in a room where the dog likes hanging around, and it will reap the benefits.
It will take you a few days before you start noticing the changes on the dog's skin and fur, and this is after running the humidifier for a few days.
The humidifier uses ultrasonic vibrations to diffuse cool water into the atmosphere. Some have a rotating disc that turns rapidly.
It breaks down water into tiny particles which are inhalable.
iii. Evaporative Humidifiers
This type of humidifier uses a fan to circulate moisture into the air; it is different from a warm mist humidifier which relies on heating water.
Evaporative humidifiers have filters which trap white dust from minerals present in the water from dispersing to the air.
To prevent mineral accumulation on the filters, you should regularly replace them. The presence of a filter makes it easy to maintain.
If you have a dog, you can use this humidifier to increase humidity in your house.
iv. Ultrasonic humidifiers
This is a modern form of the cool-mist humidifier.
It increases water vapor into the atmosphere by having a high-frequency vibrating diaphragm which can either be made from metal or ceramic.
The diaphragm generates water droplets exiting into the air as a cool fog.
It is one of the quietest humidifiers to humans, and it produces a safe and effective mist.
However, if the frequency it creates is too high, it can cause dogs discomfort.
It is, therefore, not ideal for dogs. If you have to buy one, take note of the frequency label on the box.
Due to the absence of a filter, this type of humidifier can emit a considerable amount of white dust and other allergens into the air.
How Do Dogs Benefit From Humidifiers?
Opens-Up Air Passages
Humidifiers moisten the air that we breathe; this applies to pets and makes them breath better.
When your dogs suffer from allergic reactions, their nasal passages become inflamed. This inflammation can lead to difficulties in breathing.
However, a humidifier can moisturize the air going through the airways and even make clogged mucus easily flow.
Any cold-like symptoms can be relieved when your pet breathes in the humid air.
Soothes Their Skin
You do not want to see your pets suffering from dry skin effects. Thankfully, a humidifier can be of much help.
Moist air can aid soothe dry skin.
It Eases Snoring
Snoring is common to some breeds; however, humid air can make it easy for some.
The mist produced by a humidifier can soothe your pet's nasal passage, making them have an easy time breathing through their nose.
Moist air can stop your dog's mouth and throat from getting dry, which can aid in easing their snoring.
Dogs can suffer from a range of allergic reactions, just like their owners.
Most of the allergic reactions can disappear when there is moistened air.
Invest in a humidifier that is friendly to your dogs, and it will relieve most of their allergic reactions.
What Is The Best Humidity Level For Dogs?
It is recommendable for adult dogs to maintain a humidity level ranging from 30% to 70%.
You should maintain a relative humidity level of about 65% for nursing litters and puppies.
Even so, different dog breeds have different requirements.
You must engage a veterinarian before you settle for any humidifier.
Are Dogs Affected By High Humidity?
Too much humidity combined with sensible temperatures creates a challenging environment for dogs to cool down.
For dogs to cool down their temperatures, they have to lose moisture from their body through their tongue when panting.
When there is high humidity, it becomes hard for the moisture on their tongues to evaporate, making it hard for them to cool down.
Instead, their temperatures may rapidly skyrocket to dangerous levels.
Therefore, you must ensure your pet enjoys the recommended humidity levels. Open your windows frequently to ensure there is a supply of clean air.
Factors To Consider When Settling For A Humidifier
With the different varieties of humidifiers in the market, there are critical aspects that you need to put into considerations when buying a humidifier for your family and pets.
When going for a humidifier that uses a heating element, you should be extra cautious.
A heating element pauses threats to both toddlers and pets.
If you must use a humidifier with a heating element, ensure it is out of reach for toddlers and pets.
For units required to be placed on the floor, keep them away from dogs and small children.
Level Of Maintenance Required
Humidifier units have different maintenance levels that can enhance their productivity. You should pick a unit that is easy to maintain.
If you have a packed schedule, consider the level of maintenance as a priority.
Check The Power Requirements
Humidifiers require power to run. Therefore, you must look at the power requirements of the device you plan to invest in.
Look out for an energy-efficient unit so that you can maintain low energy bills.
Large and high-power units can drive your power bills upwards.
If unsure how to determine your potential unit's power requirements, consult an electrical technician for directions.
Check Out On The Noise Level
There are humidifier models that have low noise output.
Such models are ideal for people who are light sleepers. An ultrasonic humidifier is an example of a quiet unit you can settle for.
However, dogs may not be comfortable with an ultrasonic unit with high vibration frequency, look out at the frequency it creates.
The Type Of Humidifier
There are different humidifiers for particular climatic conditions and different purposes.
If you live in a hot and arid area, a cool-mist humidifier is recommendable over other types.
It is also the best humidifier to invest in if you have pets in your house.
How Do You Keep Your Dogs Safe When Using A Humidifier?
- Avoid using essential oils: some of the humidifier units in the market provide a slot for essential oils; however, if you are using the humidifier to serve your dogs, you should only use water. Essential oils are potential threats should dogs inhale them. For the best health of your dog, avoid using them entirely.
- Please turn off your humidifier unit when it's not in use: Even though we have humidifiers that can automatically switch off, it is advisable that you power-off your appliance when it's not actively in use.
- Ensure the device is clean: To keep your humidifier in its best condition, you need to clean it regularly. Cleaning it will ensure that your air is not contaminated with any impurities that come with a dirty humidifier's tank. To properly clean it, be keen on the manufacturer's cleaning instructions.
- Put the humidifier in a safe position: keep your unit away from your dog and babies.
Are humidifiers safe for dogs? Humidifiers are safe for dogs. The appliances are key in increasing the relative humidity level in your home.
Climatic conditions or heating appliances can lower humidity levels during the winter season. EPA recommends relative humidity levels of about 30% to 60%.
Like humans, dogs will suffer skin irritation and allergies should the humidity levels go below the required standards.
There are different types of humidifier models that you can invest in, but if you are looking for one that can also serve your pets, you should consider going for cool-mist humidifiers.
Some of the benefits that your dogs can enjoy are soothing their skin, relieving allergies, among others.
Dogs are affected by high humidity levels, ensure you maintain the required humidity levels for your pets. Keep your pet safe by keeping the humidifier away from the pet.