Is cinnamon OK for squirrels?

Answered by John Hunt

Cinnamon is generally not considered safe for squirrels to consume. While it is a popular spice used in cooking and baking, it can be harmful to squirrels if ingested in large amounts.

One of the main reasons why cinnamon is not recommended for squirrels is its strong scent. Squirrels have a highly developed sense of smell, and the strong aroma of cinnamon can be overwhelming and unpleasant for them. It is believed that the strong smell of cinnamon acts as a deterrent for squirrels, making them avoid areas where it is present.

In addition to its strong scent, cinnamon contains compounds that can be toxic to squirrels in large quantities. Cinnamon contains a substance called coumarin, which can be harmful to the liver and kidneys when consumed in high doses. While humans can safely consume cinnamon in small amounts, squirrels have a different metabolism and may not be able to tolerate it as well.

It is worth noting that small amounts of cinnamon are unlikely to cause any harm to squirrels. If a squirrel happens to come across a small amount of cinnamon in the environment, it is unlikely to cause any significant health issues. However, intentionally feeding squirrels cinnamon or using it as a repellent may not be a safe or effective method.

If you are looking for ways to deter squirrels from certain areas, there are other methods that may be more suitable. For example, using physical barriers, such as wire mesh or fences, can help keep squirrels out of unwanted areas. Additionally, providing alternative food sources, such as bird feeders or squirrel feeders, can help attract squirrels away from areas where they may cause damage.

While cinnamon is generally safe for humans to consume in small amounts, it is not recommended for squirrels. The strong scent and potentially toxic compounds in cinnamon can be harmful to squirrels if ingested in large quantities. It is best to avoid intentionally feeding squirrels cinnamon and instead focus on other methods to deter them from unwanted areas.