Essential Oils for Dogs 101

Essential Oils for Dogs 101

In recent years, we have explored natural healing and its positive effects. But are essential oils for dogs, safe? Can we naturally treat their skin allergies, kennel cough or anxiety /separation disorders? Or will these be toxic to them and make our pets sick?

Before we get started, let’s have a common understanding that dogs sense of smell is way powerful compared to us. So if we can tolerate or even enjoy a particular scent, doesn’t mean they can too!

Essential Oils for dogs | Oils safe for dogs
Essential Oils for dogs | Oils safe for dogs

Welcome to Essential oils for dogs 101: The Why, What, Which and How of Essential Oils for Dogs. This post will clear all your doubts about essential oils, which are safe and which are toxic for dogs and how to administer them

Let’s Begin!

What are Essential Oils for dogs? ->The Superheroes

Essential Oils for dogs | Oils safe for dogs
Essential Oils for dogs | Oils safe for dogs

Essential oils are naturally occurring building blocks of plants. These are found in the stem, roots or even leaves of a plant. Essential Oils are volatile in nature. It means that they can easily react become a gas or even solid! These components are the reason behind a plant’s fragrance and color. These are extracted from plants and used in aromatherapy for natural healing of various ailments. Simply put, Essential oils are super heroes J

What are Carrier Oils? The Side-Kick

Essential Oils for dogs | Carrier Oils
Essential Oils for dogs | Carrier Oils

Like Essential oils, carrier oils are also naturally occurring. Carrier oils are also made from specific plants. Carrier oils are different from essential oils in the sense that carrier oils are used to ‘carry’ essential oils inside your skin.  This is because essential oils applied in concentration can be harmful to our skin. Carrier oils are mostly used to nourish the skin and can easily be mixed with essential oils. Ummm…So carrier oils are like super side-kick of essential oils 😛

Essential Oils for Dogs : Are They Safe?

Essential oils have been known to sooth a host of ailments in dogs. They can relieve our dogs from pains and anxieties and can also treat skin allergies. Despite being naturally occurring components, essential oils may or may not be completely oils safe for dogs.

Oils safe for dogs | Apply Essential Oils
Oils safe for dogs | Apply Essential Oils

5 Essential Oils Safe for Dogs (Categories)

Floral Oils

Chamomile (Matricaria Chamomilla)

Chamomile soothes an upset stomach like a charm. It calms the mind from mental imbalances like stress, anxiety, panic and hyperactivity. A research suggested Chamomile can promote tranquility and relaxation leading to overall sense of well-being in shelter dogs. Chamomile also helps keep the skin, free from allergies and pigmentations. It is like the all-rounder apple of essential oils.

Oils safe for dogs | Apply Essential Oils
Oils safe for dogs | Apply Essential Oils

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)

Widely used in Aromatherapy, Lavender eases mental and emotional disturbances. It gives a happy feeling to the dog. It elevates the spirits of the dog when they experience shyness, fear or hyperactivity.

Another reason why Lavender makes your dog happy is because it is an anti-pruritic. This essential oil for dogs is a ‘wonder potion’ as it relieves them of itching and infections.

Oils safe for dogs | Apply Essential Oils
Oils safe for dogs | Apply Essential Oils

Root Oils

Ginger Oil (Zingiber officinale)

Ginger has a host of healing properties. In fact, a scientific research suggests that it has ant-fungal properties which protects against infections. Particularly for dogs, this essential oil takes away their pain! Yes, ginger helps reduce joint pains and other muscular pains in dogs.

Essential Oils for dogs | Oils safe for dogs
Essential Oils for dogs | Oils safe for dogs

It helps ease out their respiratory system. As a result, it makes it easier for dogs to breathe. Ginger, like other essential oils safe for dogs ,also aids digestion in dogs.

Root Oils

Cedar wood Virginian (Juniperus virginiana)

Root Oils are unique! Its amongst the essential oils safe for dogs and contains benefits that are very different from other categories. Cedar wood oil minimizes chance of insect bites owing to its odor which repels reptiles and other insects. It promotes skin health and makes your dogs look ‘radiant’ as it improves blood circulation in dogs.

Resin Oils

Frankincense Carterii (Boswellia Carterii)

Essential Oils for dogs | Oils safe for dogs
Essential Oils for dogs | Oils safe for dogs

Frankincense Oil helps is easing mental stress. It elevates the dogs mood when they feel shy, afraid, irritability or angry. It has Anti-microbial properties. Since it works on the immune system, it is known to eliminate tumors in dogs. Its one of the complete essentail oils safe for dogs.

How to Apply Essential Oils for Dogs

There are two broad methods to apply Essential oils for dogs: –

Directly Apply Essential Oils

Apply Essential Oils | Oils safe for dogs
Apply Essential Oils | Oils safe for dogs
  • No Direct Application: Never apply any essential oil directly to dog’s skin. Always dilute it in carrier oils before application. Some good examples of suitable carrier oils are Coconut Oil, Sweet Almond and Olive Oil.
  • The Safe Mix: One must dilute the essential oils in carrier oil before direct application. A safe ratio considered ‘mild’ as per pet standards is 0.25%. This translates to 1 drop of essential oil in 1.5 tablespoon of carrier oil.
  • Check with the Vet: The Essential Oil to be applied must be approved by a vet in advance. Please note that this blog is for informational purposes only. Do consult veterinarian doctors for an expert opinion
  • Patch Test: Once completing step 1 and 2, do perform a pilot test also known as the patch test. This is to ensure eth safety of your beloved canine. Apply a drop of diluted oil onto your dog’s insensitive areas to detect any skin reactions during the next 15 minutes.

If all goes well and you note nothing unusual in dogs behavior and skin condition, proceed with the rest of the application. Avoid sensitive areas on dog’s body.

Apply Essential Oils using Oil Diffuser

Oil Diffusers are quite convenient. Please use a water-based oil diffuser for pets. While we have 6 million olfactory receptors in our noses (for smelling stuff), dogs have 50 times more receptors in their noses. Thereby, ensure that the oil diffuser is on only for 10 minutes and then off for about 30 minutes.

Apply Essential Oils | Oil Diffuser
Apply Essential Oils | Oil Diffuser

The room must be fully ventilated. Place the oil diffuser away from the dogs reach to prevent them to licking it. The oil diffuser must be situated on the opposite end of the dog’s position.

Caution: Patch Test (For Oil Diffuser): Add a drop of diluted oil mix to the oil diffuser and run it only for 10-15 minutes. 

Apply Essential Oils | Oil Diffuser
Apply Essential Oils | Oil Diffuser

Summing it up

Always Apply Essential Oils with carrier oils for maximum benefit. However, the application of it must be controlled, tested and consulted with experts before application. Do consult the Vet in case of any doubts! As pet owners, let’s try our best to be careful with Essential Oils for Dogs.

Carrier Oils | Oil Diffuser
Carrier Oils | Oil Diffuser
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References

https://info.achs.edu/blog/aromatherapy-for-rescue-dogs

https://www.takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/explore-healing-practices/aromatherapy/are-essential-oils-safe

https://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/pet-safety-tips/essential-oils-dogs/

https://www.healthline.com/health/carrier-oil#coconut-oil