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  #1  
Old 27th January 2012, 08:11 AM
Razamataz's Avatar
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Has burning incense hurt my boxers?

I looked through the sticky with a list of things toxic to our furry friends, but this was not mentioned anywhere. Two weeks ago my family and I euthanized my 11 1/2 year old female boxer, Tori, due to a monstrous cancerous mass that had taken over her lungs and was moving in on her heart. Our remaining 8 year old male boxer, Wrigley, has always seemed to have nasal passage issues, (for example, every time he gets moderately to super elbow noodle excited, he sneezes over and over like he's trying to clear out somewhere) but he seems to be hacking more often than usual and though he isn't in a condition even comparable to the respiratory distress Tori was in before we decided to put her down, I'm a little freaky about it now.
He's due for his 6 month tune up at the vet anyway, but vet visits are always a trial because he is unpredictably aggressive and has to wear a muzzle that, naturally, constricts his breathing. He hasn't had a complete checkup without trying to take the vet or vet tech's face off in a few years. This issue is secondary to my main question though.
I burn incense and often have lit candles in my room, where he spends a great deal of his time, as did my female when she was alive.
We also had a fire in our home about two years ago that filled the house with smoke (I was away at college) and before he evacuated my father actually had to wander around the house on all fours looking for Tori because she was hiding in my room and wouldn't come out, surely taking in a quantity of smoke. He ended up having to drag her out of the crate and chuck her out my ground floor window to my brother because she refused to walk next to him, haha.
Could this have caused her cancer? Can incense cause respiratory distress in a dog like Wrigley whose face construction seems to limit how well he breathes anyway? Should I stop burning it altogether? Has anyone ever heard tell of this? I obviously will be consulting my vet, but I was curious to see what other smash-faced boxer owners have heard. I realize it sounds a little paranoid, so little smoke comes off of an incense burner, but I've been burning it in a small room with limited circulation for years. Thoughts?
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  #2  
Old 27th January 2012, 12:40 PM
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I am so sorry for your loss. And not to add to your distress and emotions......incense is really not good for dogs, nor is candles, especially brachiaphalic breeds ( short nosed). Could this be the cause of her cancer? One will never know. But, if your boy is having breathing issues, I would highly recommend no candles or incense. Both have residual smoke, that will leave a residue in nostrils, sinus cavity and lungs. The smoke may seem like it floats upwards, but the residue eventually falls to the floor, where dogs easily inhale it. You can see that black residue on the sides of candle holders and the wall and ceiling close to it. It's very heavy, waxy and sticky. Dogs breathe through their noses, so their intake of oxygen is lowered than us humans. So to have those sticky toxins breathed in and then settled into the sinus and lungs just can't be good for them.

The two rescues I worked with, both had in their contracts "no incense or candles". All 4 of my dogs have severe sneezing fits and hide away if I burn a candle occasionally. So their reaction alone tells me they don't like it. I'm sure they would tolerate it if I burned them more often, just to be closer to me.
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  #3  
Old 27th January 2012, 07:30 PM
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My girl Leah has allergies and I quickly found out that all that crap to make the house "smell" good is really nothing more than indoor pollutants for animals and humans.

I'd never really thought of it that way until a recent episode of Dr. Oz where he was talking about allergies and what not and that all those plug-ins, heated fragrance, candles are pollutants in the air and bad for the lungs. My mother can't be in a house that burns candles because she will constantly have to clear her throat. I too started to get a funky feeling in my throat from certain candles only to find out that wicks made out of a certain material (forgot the name) is bad for the lungs.

If you like to have a nice smell in the house take real lemons and cut them up, put them in a pot on the stove and let it simmer. You can use oranges or grapefruit, cranberries. Also cleaning the home naturally with white vinegar with a bit of lemon squeezed in results in a nice natural smell in the home.

Leah will also get as far away from a candle or anything that burns like LilyLaRue stated above. As they would say "the nose knows"

It's best to err on the side of caution with this kind of stuff. May very well be bad for you and your pets.
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  #4  
Old 28th January 2012, 03:32 PM
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I am so sorry for the loss of your baby girl

I am another one not ok with smelly thing. I have read a while back they call allergies. I can't stand incense, to me, it's like cigarette smoke. I cannot breathe.

I open the windows as much as i can to have clean fresh smell in the house.

also, the tip of putting lemon on the stove (in water) works extremely well.

As for that causing cancer, no one will ever know.. I am so sorry again for the loss of your baby girl.
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  #5  
Old 30th January 2012, 11:49 AM
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Thanks so much for the advice, looks like I'll be boxing up all of my jasmine sticks until I move out or otherwise. I'll definitely be looking into the lemon trick, my room always smells like dog or horse depending on which boots I have in the closet or how motivated I am to wash the dog blanket on top of my bedding :P
And thank you for the sympathy. Good dogs shouldn't have to die.

 
  #6  
Old 30th January 2012, 01:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Razamataz View Post
Thanks so much for the advice, looks like I'll be boxing up all of my jasmine sticks until I move out or otherwise. I'll definitely be looking into the lemon trick, my room always smells like dog or horse depending on which boots I have in the closet or how motivated I am to wash the dog blanket on top of my bedding :P
And thank you for the sympathy. Good dogs shouldn't have to die.
That's a good decison. Try to wash the blankets more often and you'll probably be fine. Add a little vinegar to the wash machine when washing the blankets.

I would think constant use of candles and/or incense would have an effect on the indoor air quality. Sometimes in winter when I've had enough of the stuffed up feeling of not having the windows open, I'll turn off the furnace, open the windows and doors for 15 minutes and let that cold air rush in and get out all the stinkies.

Update thread if you notice a difference in Wrigley. Really though, getting rid of that constant use of candles and incense is just good practice all the way around...for you and Wrigley.

 
  #7  
Old 30th January 2012, 03:35 PM
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when it's cold outside, i usually open all windows each time i take the dogs for a walk