Pure Aromatherapy for Body, Mind & Spirit

Essential Oils for Dogs*

Essential Oils for Dogs*

Essential Oils for DogsAs a society we love our dogs and continue to say no to drugs and want to explore holistic healing opportunities of using essential oils for dogs. Instead of using  an anti-anxiety drug on Fido, what if a little lavender could go a long way?

Before you begin, it’s important to ask yourself what essential oils are safe for dogs. Their sense of smell is astronomically stronger than ours, so scents (even natural ones) can have an adverse effect on them.  We have highlighted eight (8) essential oils that have been known consistently to make the safe cut for use with dogs plus show various benefits.  We’ve also outlined the major offenders, and included a simple summary of how to administer essential oils.

In the same way we look for holistic aids, our beloved companions may also boost their immunity and soothe aches and pains in a natural way. 

The eight (8) essential oils featured in this blog article are now available in a specially priced set. Order yours today here.

Essential Oils for Dogs – Lavender*

Lavender  (Lavandula angustifolia). Most pet aromatherapy products use lavender more than any other essential oil.

  • Lavender is gentle, antibacterial, antipruritic (anti-itch).
  • Antiseptic proprieties helps stimulates rapid wound healing.
  • Lavender can act as a central nervous system sedative.
  • Relaxing especially if your dog is suffering from bites, bruises or burns.
  • Great for deodorizing.
  • Lavender helps reduce anxiety, depression, and is great as an insect repellent.
  • In regards to our arthritic pups, it can be used both topically and through aromatherapy as a pain reliever and anti-inflammatory.

One of the nicest ways to apply this essential oil is by applying it to your pup’s ear fur. Gently massage during application and always dilute before with a carrier oil.

Essential Oils for Dogs – Myrrh*

Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha). warm sweet balsam amber spicy scent is anti-inflammatory, antiviral.

  • Myrrh can help with puppy teething pain, and skin irritations.
  • Myrrh boosts immune system.
  • It’s possible that, when applied regularly diluted in a carrier oil myrrh can help clear up patches of irritated skin.
  • May help a pup adjust with other pets in the house.
  • Myrrh promotes increased alertness.
  • Eases mental and emotional distress.
  • Encourages sense of tranquility, confidence, and security.
  • Myrrh regulates emotions for greater sense of balance.
  • Elevates the spirit when experiencing shyness, fear, irritability, anger, and other negative feelings.

Though myrrh works as an excellent anti-inflammatory, it is not safe to be ingested, so it is critical it only be applied to areas your dog can’t lick.

Essential Oils for Dogs – Ginger Root*

Ginger Root (Zingiber officinale). Smells warm, woody and spicy, our ginger essential oil is of therapeutic quality which is highly recommended for use with your dog.  Do not use a low grade ginger essential oil that may have a musty or stale odor.

  • Ginger is great in helping motion sickness, and indigestion.
  • Useful ingredient in massage oils for sprains, strains, dysplasia, and arthritis.
  • Ginger can also help dogs breathe a little easier.
  • Ginger may also help your pup with some of their joint pain.
  • Ginger calms inflammation.
  • Eases mental and emotional distress.

    Essential Oils for Dogs – Frankincense*

    Frankincense (Boswellia carterii).  Balsamic, woody, typical olibanum scent.

    • Frankincense essential oils can be used to help reduce growths on your dogs body, apply 1 drop of Frankincense directly on the area, for this purpose you can use undiluted, 2 times per day.
    • Protect the skin and minimize scarring by rubbing it on the skin with a cotton ball.
    • Eases mental and emotional distress.
    • Elevates the spirit when experiencing shyness, fear, irritability, anger, and other negative feelings.
    • Anti-microbial/Anti-bacterial properties.
    • Encourages sense of tranquility and confidence.

    It is a safe oil to use and most dogs respond positively to it. Frankincense covers all the aspects of pet care, right from wound care and behavior improvement to antibacterial healing.

    Essential Oils for Dogs – Geranium*

    Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens). Sweet, floral, fresh, calming scent. Geranium essential oil is safe and gentle for dogs.

    • Geranium is strong antifungal oil and is good for skin irritations especially caused by yeast infections.
    • Fungal ear infections.
    • Geranium oil is effective in repelling ticks, and is a must-have oil. Ticks dislike all rose fragrances, including this one.
    • Geranium has a calming effect on dogs suffering from anxiety. 

    Despite its powerful calming and healing properties, geranium oil is gentle and safe for dogs to use. As with all essential oils, it’s necessary to dilute the oils so that you are using them at the appropriate strength for your dog’s size.

    Essential Oils for Dogs – Carrot Seed*

    Carrot Seed (Daucus carota). woody-earthy, slightly spicy, strong, fruity, warm, herbaceous and musky aroma. 

    • Carrot seed essential oil is good for dry flaky, sensitive skin which is susceptible to infection.
    • Anti-inflammatory properties, with moderate antibacterial effects.
    • Can also rejuvenate and stimulate tissue regeneration, so it is a good oil to use for scar healing.
    • Carrot seed is super gentle.

    (NOTE: This oil should NOT be used with pregnant dogs.)

    Essential Oils for Dogs – Valerian*

    Valerian (Valeriana officinalis). Valerian essential oil has a warm, woody, musky aroma.

    • Relaxing.
    • Helpful for separation anxiety or fear of loud noises (noise anxiety), storms, fireworks and new situations.
    • Elevates the spirit when experiencing shyness, fear, irritability, anger, and other negative feelings.
    • Encourages restful sleep.
    • Eases mental and emotional distress.
    • Calms skin.
    • Supports wound healing.
    • Enhances digestive function.
    • Calms the body and mind during times of nervousness, panic, restlessness, excitement, or hyperactivity.

    Essential Oils for Dogs – Sweet Marjoram*

    Marjoram, Sweet (Origanum marjorana). The aroma of sweet marjoram essential oil is warm, spicy, strong, sweet, herbal. 

    • Sweet marjoram is calming, antispasmodic effects, strong antibacterial and anti-fungal properties.
    • Recommended replacement for tea tree oil in blends for pets.
    • Bacterial skin infections, wound care.
    • Repels insects.
    • Reduces undesirable behaviors of intact males.  
    • Like lavender, sweet marjoram can be used for its anti-inflammatory properties.
    • Reduces digestive discomfort.
    • Encourages sense of tranquility, relaxation, and confidence.
    • Calms the body and mind during times of nervousness, panic, emotional stress, restlessness, excitement, or hyperactivity.
    • Elevates the spirit when experiencing shyness, fear, irritability, anger, and other negative feelings.

      Essential Oils for Dogs – methods of use:

      The American Kennel Club (AKC) recommends – to use essential oils with your dogs, there is an easy way to do it safely: First talk to your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will let you know which oils are potentially harmful and can also provide you with information about the best carrier oils to properly dilute essential oils for dogs, as well as appropriate dosages. Essential oils must be used as directed and not all can be used topically on pets. Please consult a veterinarian and/or a holistic veterinarian before using any new essential oils with your pet. When choosing to use any essential oils for your dog further research on each individual oil is always highly recommended.

      Do not try to save money and buy cheap “essential oils” that may contain synthetic substances. These oils will not have the therapeutic effects and, even worse, the synthetic substances and chemicals may do harm to your dog. We cannot emphasize enough the importance of using 100% pure essential oils when treating your dog.

      There are many techniques for using oils on dogs and other animals.

      Balms

      Balms can be made from blends of a couple drops of oil, carrier oils, and thicker additions such as cocoa or shea butter, and beeswax. These are good for spot treatments on the skin and paw or hoof issues.

      Gels

      Gels are made from silica or aloe vera with a couple drops of oil added and are used for the skin.

      Water-based sprays (Hydrosols)

      These are great for skin applications, bedding areas, as room sprays, or for calming the animal during travel. For extremely sensitive dogs and small dogs hydrosols are good alternatives to the more potent essential oils. A hydrosol is a water-based substance which is a by-product obtained during the steam distillation process of an essential oil.

      We carry several ready to use hydrosols that are both acceptable for use with your dog – they are Chamomile, Clary Sage, Helichrysum, Lavender, Neroli, and Rose.

      Carrier oils

      Carrier oils can have a couple essential oil drops added, tinctures, hydrosols, and more. These blends can further be added to gels, balms, ointments, or even just applied as is to problem areas.  Carrier oils consider safe to use on your dog are: Coconut Oil, Jojoba Oil, Sunflower Oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, Sweet Almond Oil and Grapeseed Oil.

      Whenever you are making a blend to use on a dog, please remember that less is more. A good general guideline is to keep the dilution around 0.5 – 1%. This would be about 2 – 4 drops total of essential oils to each tablespoon of a carrier oil.

      Essential Oils for Dogs – dilution ratios:

      We will spend a little more time in the area of dilution ratio for essential oils for dogs.  Again – always start with therapeutic grade essential oils, and double-check that you aren’t using an essential oil unsafe for dogs.  We emphasize – if any of the oils listed above seem like they can help your pet – please spend extra time researching the specific oil (s) before using on your pet.

      • Always DILUTE essential oils before using them on your dogs. A rough guideline is to add about 3-6 drops of essential oils to 1 oz. (30 ml) of carrier oil, or about 18-25 drops of essential oils to 8 oz. (240 ml) of shampoo. 
      • Use a smaller amount of diluted oils on small dogs vs. big dogs – and fewer amounts of diluted oils on puppies and senior dogs.
      • Use a hydrosol, a water-based byproduct obtained during the steam distillation process of essential oils.

      Before topical application to a pet’s skin, all essential oils should always be diluted (some oils may say otherwise but always play it safe). A safe ratio is 1 drop of essential oil for 1.5 tablespoon (approx. 445 drops) of carrier oil. This equates to a dilution of approximately 0.25%, which is considered to be be mild and likely agreeable for pets.

      A patch test can be done by applying a dime-size amount of the diluted essential oil to an insensitive part of the pet’s body, which depends on the pet. If diffusing an essential oil, ensure that a test-run is conducted by diffusing 1-2 drops of an oil that is vet-approved to be pet-friendly for only 10-15 minutes.

      Safety tests should be performed in a large, open space or a large, airy room. During your tests, watch your pet for any irritation, discomfort, or reactions, which may take up to 24 hours to occur and could potentially appear in the form of:

      • Skin irritation
      • Pawing at the face
      • Coughing, sneezing, drooling
      • Difficulty walking/staggering, slowed breathing
      • Low body temperature,
      • Weakness, slow reflexes
      • Gastrointestinal upset, vomiting, liver damage, muscle tremors, aspiration pneumonia,
      • Self-mutilation
      • Excessive salivation

      In the absence of a reaction, it is said to be safe to proceed with normal application of the diluted essential oils. Essential oils should be handled in the same manner as other products that can pose potential dangers if mistreated. They should be stored in in an area that is cool, dark, and out of the reach of pets, and they should be used in accordance with their instructions and expiration dates.

      When diluting, keep in mind that the pet’s size is a significant factor to take into consideration; a safe dilution for a large dog will not necessarily be safe for a smaller dog, and the same applies to other species. The amount of oil that is recommended to be given to animals that are feeble, old, pregnant, or unwell will not be same amount recommended for healthy animals of the same size.

      Based on research, remember this about using essential oils with your pets: LESS IS MORE.

      Essential Oils for Dogs – considered unsafe:

      This list is not an all inclusive list of essential oils unsafe for dogs.  We continue to emphasize – do your research before using any essential oil considered safe or not on your dog. These essential oils are often reputed to cause skin irritation, breathing difficulties, uncomfortable cooling effects, changes in alertness, weakness or fatigue, stumbling, vomiting, and paralysis, among various other potential effects. This list is not exhaustive:

      • Anise Essential Oil
      • Basil Essential Oil
      • Birch Essential Oil
      • Calendula Essential Oil
      • Cassia Essential Oil
      • Cinnamon Essential Oil
      • Citronella Essential Oil
      • Clove Essential Oil
      • Cypress Essential Oil
      • Eucalyptus Essential Oil
      • Garlic Essential Oil
      • Grapefruit Essential Oil
      • Juniper Essential Oil
      • Lemon Essential Oil
      • Lime Essential Oil
      • Myrtle Essential Oil
      • Nutmeg Essential Oil
      • Orange Essential Oil
      • Oregano Essential Oil
      • Peppermint Essential Oil
      • Pine Essential Oil
      • Rosemary Essential Oil
      • Spearmint Essential Oil
      • Spruce Essential Oil
      • Tea Tree Essential Oil
      • Thyme Essential Oil
      • Yarrow Essential Oil
      • Ylang Ylang Essential Oil

      Essential Oils for Dogs – Let’s Introduce Your Dog to Aromatherapy

      Aromatherapy refers to the therapeutic use of 100% pure essential oils and hydrosols for holistic treatments of physical and behavioral problems in dogs.

      • First step of aromatherapy is to decide which oils or blend of oils will help your dog.
      • Keep closed bottles of five shortlisted oils on the floor and encourage your dog to sniff those bottles.
      • Take careful note of their body language and emotional response as they smell each bottle.
      • Mark the ones that spur your dog to smell intently or lick.
      • As soon as your dog has found the oil of his need, he’ll immediately stop sniffing.
      • If your dog is too nervous, he may try to run off with a bottle, so be ready to stop him in time.
      • Every animal is clear about the essential oil he needs and he has an acute sense of smell as well to guide his own healing.

      *This statement has not been evaluated by the FDA  or AKC and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease.