Informational Guide

Are Humidifiers Safe For Cats?

Cat owners will need to be cautious and mindful while finding the right humidifier for their home. Learn how safe these home air devices are for your cat.

by Josh M

Winters, while seen as cozy and fun by some, often bring dry air and colds. While this is true for humans, our furry friends such as dogs and cats can also feel the physical effects of dry air. Many people laud humidifiers for their ability to ease skin and eye dryness and other health issues.

Are humidifiers safe for cats? Read our discussion on how to safely use a humidifier to help your cat.

White and Gray Kitten on Bed with Pillows

We all want to take care of our pets’ health as well as our own. For people and pets with allergies, skin conditions, and other health issues aggravated by dry air, humidifiers are a safe and healthy way to relieve those symptoms.

Are humidifiers good for cats? Yes! Because their primary function is to place more moisture in the air, they are suitable for cats. There are some things to bear in mind when setting up a humidifier for you and your kitty, which we will go into below.

  • Warm Mist
    Warm mist humidifiers are effective for humans and can bring warmth in winter. However, they are not recommended for homes with cats. Cats are inquisitive creatures and will attempt to play with or knock over the humidifier, potentially leading to burns or injury.
  • Cool Mist
    Cool mist humidifiers are a better option for smaller spaces with furry friends. Their cool mist function means that, even if your cat knocks it over, the chances of injury are much smaller.
  • Whole House
    Often used in larger homes or homes with multiple allergy sufferers, whole-home humidifiers do not need as much babysitting as standard ones. Also, they are not as easy for your cat to get at and break. They are more expensive, however, and do have installation costs to consider.
  • Ultrasonic
    A great alternative to the other options, ultrasonic humidifiers are whisper quiet, relaxing, and effective; this means that it would be less stressful on your kitty’s hearing.
ElecHomes On Living Room Table

How Is a Humidifier Beneficial for Your Cat?

Will a humidifier help my cat? Here are just some of the benefits that humidifiers can bring for your beloved pet:

Helps with Nasal Blockage

Just like with humans, humidifiers increasing the moisture in the air can thin the mucus in your cat’s sinuses, helping remove blockages and letting them breathe. This is especially helpful for cats with respiratory issues or in the winter when colds and increased blockages occur.

Relieve Dry Skin and Irritation

Eczema and other skin conditions can affect both cats and humans. Conditions like these are uncomfortable at best and painful at worst. Using a humidifier can help moisturize your cat’s skin, reducing itchiness, dandruff, and other symptoms to make them more comfortable.

Can Help Relieve their Allergies

Humidifiers with filtering systems can help tackle the dust, pollen, and other pollutants in the air. This can help ease allergy symptoms such as sneezing and dry eyes in both humans and felines.

While we still recommend following a vet’s advice, making your pet more comfortable while suffering from allergies is still a good idea.

Orange Persian Cat Sleeping

Can Help Minimize Snoring

Snoring is a quick way to disrupt your loved ones’ sleeping patterns. This can be true for humans who often find themselves sleeping with or under a snoring cat.

As humidifiers add moisture to the air, they thin mucus in the nasal passages. They can reduce sinus swelling, therefore minimizing snores from your kitty.

How to Choose a Cat-Friendly Humidifier

  • Size
    A compact humidifier that is stable is best for homes with cats. This makes them harder to push over in moments of play or curiosity and minimizes the chance of injury.
  • Noise Level
    Noise levels are crucial when it comes to humidifiers. Cats’ hearing is many times better than humans, meaning that they can hear things that do not even register for us. Get a whisper-quiet model and look at its decibel level to discern whether it will relax or stress out your feline companion.
  • Hot Vs. Cold Mist
    As we mentioned earlier, homes with cats should buy a cool-mist humidifier for cats rather hot mist one. This is to minimize the chances of burns and trips to the vet should your cat accidentally knock it over.
  • Filter or no filter
    Purchasing a filtered or unfiltered humidifier is up to you as a consumer. Filtered humidifiers are more expensive and need more maintenance but can help reduce air pollutants and ease allergy symptoms.
  • Sturdiness
    Heavier humidifiers with a low-to-the-shelf center of gravity are also better for those with cats that tend to knock things from shelves.
  • Programmable
    Humidifiers for cats with timers are great for those who often leave their kitties at home when running errands or working. These most often have 2-, 4-, 8-, and 12-hour runtimes – timing them to suit your schedule can make your routine a little easier.

Precautions To Take When Using Humidifier Around Cats

1. Find a Proper Place.

Cats have a habit of getting into seemingly impossible places; with this in mind, it is crucial to place your humidifier in as safe a place as possible. Try to find a spot away from windows and open airways that is out of the way.

2. Use a Low Noise Humidifier.

As mentioned earlier, cats have incredible hearing. This means that loud humidifiers can bring much unnecessary stress, especially when paired with everyday household noises. Finding a whisper-quiet one with a low decibel level can help your cat relax.

Brown Humidifier with Wood Design
3. Go for a Sturdy and Durable Humidifier.

A humidifier with a low center of gravity and a stable base will go a long way to prevent spills and injuries for curious felines. A heavy but compact model also helps.

4. Don’t Add Fragrance to Your Humidifier.

Are essential oil humidifiers safe for cats? We all want our homes to smell fresh and inviting, but cat owners need to be careful. While adding essential oils to your humidifier may sound like a great idea, certain chemicals in these oils can harm cats and irritate their sensitive noses.

5. Open the Window More Often to Ensure the Stale Air Leaves the Room.

It may seem counterintuitive to open the window while using your humidifier. However, opening it a little and often will go a long way to regulate the humidity level of your home. This also prevents the air from becoming stale or uncomfortable for you and your cat.

People Also Ask (FAQ)

Is humidity bad for cats?

Humidity is not bad for cats. At its most basic, it is just water particles in the air. As we discussed above, added humidity can help ease physical discomfort and bring relaxation to your cat. Investing in a hygrometer to monitor your home’s humidity level may also help.

Should I leave my cat humidifier on all day?

We do not necessarily recommend leaving your humidifier on all day as overly humid air can be as damaging as under-humidified air, especially in mold spots. We recommend using a timer function and fitting it into your schedule.


Humidifiers could be an excellent investment to help both yourself and your furry friend. However, cat owners will need to be cautious and mindful while finding the right humidifier for their home.

Follow our guide above, and you should find that both you and your cat can be comfortable and happy with your new humidifier.

Last Updated on July 16, 2021

Josh M

My name is Josh and I am obsessed with the HVAC industry. I created this website to help HVAC techs of all levels get the best out of their heating & cooling systems. I have spent thousands of hours studying air conditioners, heaters and home air products so you can learn & buy with confidence. Learn more about the team here.