Why You Should Save Your Pet from Thirdhand Smoke

We all know of the dangers of smoking and second-hand smoke, but do you know about the dangers of thirdhand smoke? Sometimes known as ETS (environmental tobacco smoke), when residue from smoke remains on furniture, rugs, curtains, fabric lampshades, clothing, human skin, animal fur, and other surfaces, it is referred to as ETS. Recent research shows that ETS is dangerous to animals living with smokers.


by LuAnn Snawder, via Flickr

Smoking and Dogs:

Veterinarian Dr. Karen Becker tells us in her Mercola.com blog:

“Research shows that dogs living in smoking households are more likely to suffer from respiratory diseases like asthma and bronchitis, and also lung cancer, than dogs living with nonsmokers. In a Colorado State University study, a higher incidence of nasal tumors and cancer of the sinus in dogs living in a home with smokers, compared to those living in a smoke-free environment. The nasal/sinus tumors were specifically found among the long-nosed breeds such as retrievers and German Shepherds. Sadly, dogs with nasal cancer do not usually survive more than one year. Additionally, higher lung cancer rates were diagnosed in medium nosed dogs, such as Boxers and Bulldogs, who live with smokers.”


by Gato Mimmo, via Flickr

Smoking and Cats:

Dr. Carolynn MacAllister, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension Service veterinarian, writes in Americans for Nonsmoker’s Rights:

“Secondhand smoke has been associated with oral cancer and lymphoma in cats, lung and nasal cancer in dogs, as well as lung cancer in birds. One reason cats are so susceptible to secondhand smoke is because of their grooming habits. Cats constantly lick themselves while grooming, therefore they lick up the cancer-causing carcinogens that accumulate on their fur. This grooming behavior exposes the mucous membrane of their mouth to the cancer-causing carcinogens.”


Smoking and Birds:

According to MacAllister, “Pet birds also are victims of secondhand smoke. A bird’s respiratory system is hypersensitive to any type of pollutant in the air. MacAllister said the most serious consequences of secondhand smoke exposure in birds are pneumonia or lung cancer. Other health risks include eye, skin, heart, and fertility problems.”

Sometimes people will make sacrifices for their pets that they won’t make for themselves. If you know any smokers, please share this post with them. Hopefully, they’ll finally quit smoking for the benefit of the pets they care for.

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Magdalena C.
Past Member 3 years ago

Thank you!

Past Member 3 years ago


Paulinha Russell
Paulinha Russell3 years ago

Thank you

Monica Buchanan
Monica Buchanan3 years ago


Danuta Watola
Danuta W3 years ago

Thanks for sharing.

ERIKA S3 years ago

i could stop this bad habit some months ago....

Magdalena J.
Past Member 3 years ago

Thank you!

Nikki Davey
Nikki Davey3 years ago


Karen P.
Karen P3 years ago

Renee C., you're trying, don't be too hard on yourself.

Doug G.
Doug G3 years ago

Retrievers are mostly mesocepahilics, meaning they have medium sized noses. Dolicocephalics are long nosed dogs like collies. Brachycephalics are short nosed dogs like bulldogs and boxers. This article has these terms confused.