Nowadays, essential oils and aromatherapy are all the rage. Many people are effectively using them to care for their families, including their furry friends.
If you’ve ever considered using essential oils with your dog, keep reading for some information on some of the most popular oils and how they can benefit your mutt. But remember, you should always seek your veterinarian’s guidance before using any natural product, including essential oils, for your pet.
There are many essential oils that are safe and effective for use with dogs. Below I’ve listed just a few of my personal favorites, and in addition to these, there are so many other options available to pet parents. Take a look!
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5 Essential Oils for Dogs
1. Peppermint – Peppermint has been known to stimulate circulation in dogs, and it may also work as a natural insect repellant. I have a friend who swears by peppermint for arthritis and dysplasia in dogs, and has also used it to treat motion sickness when she travels with her dogs.
2. Roman Chamomile – Touted for its analgesic and nerve-settling properties, Roman Chamomile is also reported to be effective in treating muscle pain and cramps. I personally love the smell of this one!
3. Lavender – Used universally, lavender may provide immune support for allergies, ulcers, insomnia, and burns. Specifically in dogs, it may also be used to calm car ride anxiety and car sickness. Some pet owners use it for its anti-itch benefits as well. Click here to learn more about using lavender for both you and your dog.
4. Spearmint – This popular essential oil may help reduce weight, and is also good for diarrhea and nausea. Used on a short-term basis, it’s also reported to be helpful for gastrointestinal problems in cats but talk to your vet before trying it with your kitty.
5. Bergamot – This oil, also called kaffir lime, is known for being highly effective for treating bacterial ear infections, as well as ear infections caused by yeast, and it also has many anti-fungal properties. One word of caution: when using Bergamot, limit your pet’s time in the sun, as it may cause photosensitization resulting in sun burn.
Keep This in Mind
When purchasing essential oils for your family, including your pets, there are a few simple rules to keep in mind:
- Always purchase oils that come in amber (pictured above), cobalt blue, or violet purple glass bottles;
- Check the label for important information such as the country of origin, how the oil was extracted, and the names – both common and scientific – of the oil;
- Be sure the label specifically says “100 percent pure essential oil” and “therapeutic grade”. Accept no substitutes!
Although aromatherapy and essential oils may provide many wonderful benefits for pets, it is imperative that we know which ones are safe and how to properly use them so as not to harm our pets.
Oils that are safe for dogs may not be safe for cats, so it’s important to do your research before using any essential oil. I highly recommend avoiding the use of any tea tree oils around your pets, including human shampoos that contain this oil.
How To Use Essential Oils with Dogs
How you use an essential oil with your pet really depends on which oil you’re using and what you want to accomplish. There are a number of effective ways, including those I’ve listed below.
- Rubbing a little essential oil on your pet’s paws is a great place to start.
- You can also diffuse them into the air in your home by using a diffuser.
- Another option is to apply the oils directly to your hands and then massage your pet, making sure to avoid the eyes, nose, and genital areas.
- A fun stylish way to use the oils around your dog is with an essential oil diffuser necklace or bracelet, like the one below. When you wear this, you and your dog will reap the benefits of essential oils.
Always avoid using oils around puppies under 10 weeks, pregnant dogs, and very old dogs.
If you have any questions about what is safe to use, always consult your veterinarian BEFORE using any essential oil or other natural product.
Have you ever used essential oils and/or aromatherapy with your pets?
I’d love to hear about your experience in a comment below, or join my private Facebook group for dog moms and join in the conversation there!