Grapefruit seed extract for cats
You can buy grapefruit seed extract in commercial products such as Nutribiotic®. People say that when it is diluted with water it is an excellent health remedy as it kills a whole host of microorganisms and/or it inhibits their growth. For example, it is said to be a remedy for upper respiratory infections, skin diseases, bacterial infections, fungal infections, parasites and viral infections generally. People say it can be administered internally and applied externally in diluted form.
I am writing this article to flag up this product so that people can assess it themselves. Caution should be applied. When I searched this product on veterinarians’ websites my initial impression is that it is not referred to on these sites. This does not mean that it is no good. It just indicates that it is not recommended by veterinarians although some of them might.
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Also, I did some research on this product on the Wikipedia website. The author says that there is no scientific evidence that grapefruit seed extract has health benefits for cats. What the author says is that the artificial preservatives in the commercial products, such as benzethonium chloride have an effect on microorganisms. In other words, the synthetic preservative is the “anti-microbial agent” rather than natural grapefruit seed extract (GSE).
Studies have shown that many grapefruit seed extract products are contaminated with preservatives. A study found that there was no effect on feline calicivirus and feline parvovirus by GSE.
Advocates of the product say that it can also be used to disinfect cages, for example at shelters and breeder catteries. If so, it may the disinfectant qualities of the preservative which is working. I am playing devil’s advocate.
Nutribiotic GSE can also be mixed with other off-the-shelf topical preparations such as shampoos. I’ve decided that it would be unwise to discuss the dilution levels. I’d rather leave that to readers to work out if you believe that there are health benefits for cats but it must be diluted. As a guide: “three to 15 drops of GSE added to pet food or water. One or more times treatment per day, depending on size of critter…”
One cat owner said that she had struggled to cure her cats’ respiratory infections and her veterinarian had failed to assist so she relied upon grapefruit seed extract and had success she claims:
I use two drops per day per cat in canned food with great results….Now this was after countless vet visits, bouts with amoxydrops, and clavamox and even baytril. Nothing was working. So I started using this, in their canned food and also dropping it into the water fountain, about 6 drops every time I scrubbed the bowl out. Within one week, I started seeing differences in the kittens first, then with the cats (hissy on the cat site).
Another product on the fringes of cat health treatments is L-lysine for viral infections.
Haley said in a comment (see below):
“CAUTION. Grapefruit seed extract is TOXIC TO CATS!! After reading about the miraculous benefits of GSE I started giving it to my cat who had a nasty upper respiratory infection. Well after about 10 days he started eating less and becoming less active so I continued giving him the GSE thinking the virus was coming back. I was wrong! It was liver toxicity symptoms. Soon he started shaking, throwing up and he would just sit in one place balled up looking at the ground. Liver numbers not normal. Please learn from my mistake and don’t give cats grapefruit seed extract!”
This article was first published on April 1st 2015. It is republished here as it has value.
After reading the comments, sounds like using GSE on cats should be just a one time deal for maybe worms, I know many of the deworming meds doctors give to cats are a one time thing than you wait 20 days and do it again. Apparently dogs are more tolerant of GSE.
Regarding Grapefruit seed extract in cats: be very careful of what you read online, as I have seen some confusion of GRAPESEED extract (harmless) with GRAPEFRUIT SEED EXTRACT (possibly toxic).
I use L-Lysine and cleared up several things with my Gracie.
I’m about to apply some diluted GSE as she’s not feeling well. I trust it more than any crazy ideas a better might have that is costly in many ways.
I’ll watch carefully and if she isn’t feeling better I’ll switch out to something different.
Sometimes just giving her a little charcoal powder in water helps a lot.
Typo-meant “ ideas a vet might have”
We used GSE all the time in the cat water for maintenance and mixed it with tuna juice if they had worms. I also added food grade DE mixed to their food. It kept the worms at bay. Read how GSE is toxic to cats so i stopped and the worms keep coming back over and over. I’m going back to GSE – I think it to be safer than the vet meds (alt: cat gets diarrhea, throws up, or worse). You really must be careful not to overdue the amount given and if your cat doesnt tolerate it, or seems to be worse, stop immediately! Overall though, GSE is effective (I also used to clear up coccidia that the prescript meds from the vet couldnt do!!!!)
Our rescue black neutered male cat sneezed green snot. It changed eventually to white and then nothing. Antibiotic shot by vet when bacteria was green. Herpes was suggested as the virus. He continued to have stuffy nose and nasal troubles. I diluted GSE and fed it to him with eye dropper . I even dropped diluted gse in his nose. This was 8 yrs. ago. Presently He is having noisy sounds & sounds snotty. I would like to try this treatment again as I haven’t used GSE for several years. But, cat is now 9 yrs. old. Since he is older it may not be feasible. But he IS still alive . He was treated for greenish brown snot in the fall of 2017 with a pill from the vet. Currently I have seen no snot from his nose. He seems very plugged up. I have taken him into the bathroom after running the hot shower but he continues to have the same symptoms the next day and onward.
Thanks for sharing your experience, Jancee. I am sorry to hear that your cat has been unwell.
CAUTION. Grapefruit seed extract is TOXIC TO CATS!! After reading about the miraculous benefits of GSE I started giving it to my cat who had a nasty upper respiratory infection. Well after about 10 days he started eating less and becoming less active so I continued giving him the GSE thinking the virus was coming back. I was wrong! It was liver toxicity symptoms. Soon he started shaking, throwing up and he would just sit in one place balled up looking at the ground. Liver numbers not normal. Please learn from my mistake and don’t give cats grapefruit seed extract!
Thanks Haley. I will post your comment on the page to highlight it.
How much did you give him daily? And mixed with what…how much?
anything is toxic to cats if you use it wrong…….. also, in my experience, vets barely know wtf theyre doing. at least in my town, i am currently looking to find a vet who isnt a total moron. they tell me all kinds of shit to get more diagnostics and then after 2000 dollars, tell me its nothing. im not even kidding. and when it is something they arent willing to do fk all. so…. i dont get it. i am not going back to one and am on the search for a homepathic/natural veterinarian, does one even exist????
Holistic vets are rare: https://pictures-of-cats.org/why-isnt-integrativeholistic-veterinary-medicine-more-widely-accepted.html
Click on this page to read about some holistic vets: https://pictures-of-cats.org/tag/holistic-vet
And some home treatments: https://pictures-of-cats.org/tag/home-treatments-for-cats
Good luck. And thanks for visiting.
I can attest to it’s miraculous properties. I used organic raw coconut oil as a carrier oil to a few (4-5 initially) drops of gse applied topically. In the span of a few short days it HEALED torn and open flesh. I could scarcely believe my own eyes. Thank you sincerely for the awesome tip.
Thanks Irene for sharing your experience.
my cat will not stop licking himself! he has always been a groomer, but not in his old age is licking raw spots. do you think that the gse and coconut oil applied will help to heal?
Susie, it may be useful, first, to get to the bottom of his over-grooming. In 90% of the cases of over-grooming, it is due to stress. This is not a criticism of you. It may be because he is a nervous cat or there is something going on which causes him to be anxious. I think it would be very useful if you could do some detective work and find out what it is. If you like you could pass that information onto me and I’ll will do some work on it which may help him. What I’m advocating is taking proactive steps to stop his behaviour rather than reactive steps which is what you are suggesting. I don’t think coconut oil would help the area to heal. I must say that it sounds bad if he has over-growned so much that he had injured himself.
DAY 1 rattlesnake bite, flesh rotting fast and smell was horrid.
rattlesnake bite day 1 day 2 and day 8 with gse mix. my cat lil deb slipped out and confronted snake on porch i slung 2 ferals in house , it was striking at me and one fang got deb
.DAY 1 rattlesnake bite, flesh rotting fast and smell was horrid.
DAY 2 rattlesnake bite after treatment with Nutribiotic GSE mixed with juice from a can of tuna. Also peeled an aloe leaf and added 4 drops gse to aloe goo and applied externally.
DAY 8 A MIRACLE LOOKS LIKE NOTHING MORE THAN A RUGBURN
IF PHOTOS DO NOT OPOST SEE THEM HERE ON MY GROUP PG.
Wow that’s amazing. Thanks for posting Terri.
will cure most anything including the uncureable. Mix 40 drops nutribiotic grapefruit seed extract with 20 ML / CC canned tuna juice , give 1 ML/CC 3 times a day to sick and once a day to well cats and they will not catch the illness , try it gse available at the “Vitamin Shoppe ” for 12 dollars , add a dropper of lomatium to the mix for extra boost. kills all bacteria, fungus, and viruses.cures not treats , it cures.
I may be tempted to use this product externally, perhaps in conjunction with a mild cleaning agent, but never internally with any cat. This is the very first time that I have ever heard of any benefit that citrus could have should a cat consume it. I just don’t have a good feeling about it.
I am a tried and true L-lysine caretaker. I keep pounds and pounds of it and use it consistently, every single day for every cat in my world.
I think you are right to try it out externally because that could be a good test and done safely. I have never heard of it before either and it was Sandy who told me about it. It does seem to have almost miracle properties which made me suspicious and the Wikipedia article put me off somewhat but there may be some true value in the treatment.
Quite a few cleaning products contain lemon or orange, so I would be inclined to use grapefruit as part of a cleaning agent too. But, I’ve never seen any edible cat product containing lemon or orange either.
I’m sorry that you weren’t able to save Charlie. I don’t remember reading about his health issues, but I’m sure you did everything you could for your beloved friend. Seems like you have a good vet.
After my experiences with Mitzy at the vet’s, I’m always going to try home remedies first.
The vets who treated Charlie are generally very good but on this occasion I don’t think they did a great job, if I am honest. I did everything that I could and I believed that he had a tumour behind his right eye and at the end of the day the senior veterinarian at the clinic agreed with me and at that point we decided together to euthanise Charlie because it was quite advanced and he was obviously in some distress. It was a very emotional moment. For quite a long time the vets thought he just had an upper respiratory infection.
I would rather try GSE before some of the drugs given by vets. I don’t think most vets would recommend this, except for the holistic ones.
I know one of your readers uses L-lysine, but can’t remember who, or for what health issue. It would be great to hear from anyone who’s used this with success.
I agree some of the drugs are pretty toxic. I hate to think how many cats have come from the vets worse than they went in.
I used L-lysine for Charlie who was not responding to treatment but he died before I could evaluate its effectiveness. The vet I saw recommended L-lysine and she used it herself.