Essential oils are volatile aromatic compounds that occur naturally in plants and come from the seeds, bark, stems, leaves, flowers, and roots of plants. If you’ve used essential oils, I’m sure you’re already familiar with their health benefits, but have you tried using essential oils on your pets?
Essential oils may be beneficial to the health of both dogs and humans, and many holistic veterinarians incorporate essential oils into their practices for: flea and tick prevention, skin problems, and behavioral issues such as anxiety.
While we know that there are benefits to using essential oils on pets, it is important to know which oils are safe to use? How to use them? And it’s important to remember that, like people, each animal is different and may have a specific reaction to a particular essential oil.
Is it safe to use essential oils on pets?
Are you wondering about the safety of essential oils for pets, the answer is: there are essential oils that are considered okay to use on pets.
“Just like using essential oils on small children, a little amount can be very helpful for pets.” It’s critical to understand this.
There are many essential oils that are considered safe and beneficial to your pet’s health. However, there are also many essential oils that are somewhat toxic to cats and dogs (and animals in general). This will be listed at the end of the article.
5 essential oils are good for dogs
What essential oils are appropriate for dogs? The following essential oils are not only suitable for dogs but have some impressive potential benefits.
Lavender essential oil is quite popular among humans, so you probably have this amazing oil for your furry friend. If you’re trying to find ways to mask unpleasant odors from your dog, lavender is just the kind of scent pet owners love. In addition, studies have shown that lavender has an amazingly helpful effect on PTSD(post-traumatic stress disorder), as well as anti-anxiety abilities, so it may calm both you and your pet.
For pets like dogs, the calming effect of lavender essential oil is very helpful for anxiety (usually caused by a vet visit or car ride), motion sickness, or sleep problems.
Diffusing the scent of lavender essential oil in the air allows dogs to rest and sit for much longer and walk and vocalize for much less time. A practical alternative therapy to this ‘dog travel excitement’ may be provided in the form of diffused lavender scent.”
Lavender is also a great essential oil for dealing with dog skin problems such as allergies and burns and is also commonly used for dog wounds and scratches.
You may already be familiar with this popular, invigorating essential oil. Can peppermint essential oil harm my dog? In fact, peppermint essential oil is one of the top essential oils for removing fleas from dogs. You will find that peppermint essential oil is actually one of the most commonly used “dog flea repellents” sold in pet stores or online.
Peppermint essential oil can be used to cool sore muscles, energize tired animals, and relieve upset stomachs. When diffused, it purifies the air and freshens breath. This essential oil opens the airways to promote a healthy respiratory system and also relieves joint pain.
As a refreshing essential oil, it is also a great mood booster for animals. Regular use of shampoos containing peppermint essential oil is the best way to kill fleas on dogs with essential oils.
R. Chamomile Oil
Roman Chamomile essential oil is a well-known anti-inflammatory and is a great choice for both humans and dogs if the problem is a skin irritation, burn, wound, ulcer or eczema.
It is a very gentle essential oil that can also help calm a nervous dog.
If you are looking for an essential oil recipe for your dog that uses Roman Chamomile, consider making your own calming spray to go with lavender essential oil.
Can I use frankincense oil on my dog? For most dogs, the answer is YES.
The use of Frankincense oil in pet cancers should not be surprised when you understand that studies have shown the powerful potential of Frankincense oil to help fight some forms of human cancer, including bladder cancer.
Frankincense essential oil is known to have powerful antibacterial properties, making it an excellent choice for antibacterial and immune-boosting purposes.
Cedar essential oil (Cedrus Atlantica or Cedrus deodara Himalayan) is an excellent natural insect repellent.
Cedar essential oil for dogs can also be used as an antiseptic for the lungs, expectorant when coughing (like a dog cough), circulatory stimulant (helps with pain and arthritis), hair growth promoter, dandruff reduction, diuretic, and can also help with things like shyness and nervousness.
5 essential oils are good for cats
What essential oils are best for cats? The following essential oils are safe to use on cats in the short term.
Spearmint oil has a somewhat similar scent and uses to peppermint essential oil, and green peppermint essential oil is really effective in dealing with some problems in cats, such as nausea and diarrhea.
For overweight cats, some veterinarians use green peppermint to help with metabolism, and for cats with gastrointestinal problems, green peppermint essential oil can help.
As with most essential oils, green peppermint needs to be diluted before use.
Frankincense essential oil has been shown to be helpful in certain cancers.
Frankincense essential oil can also reduce tumors and external ulcers.
Frankincense essential oil can also increase the blood supply to the brain, but it can also worsen high blood pressure, so be careful when using it.
You can consult your veterinarian, but if your cat has a history of high blood pressure, it is best not to use this essential oil.
Just like humans, cardamom essential oil is helpful for your pet’s digestion.
It can help reduce heartburn while also promoting a healthy appetite.
It also has natural antibacterial properties that can relieve coughs.
Helichrysum essential oil has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-microbial, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal properties that have many benefits for pets.
Helichrysum reduces bleeding in pets due to injuries from accidents and is very effective in skin regeneration.
Helichrysum essential oil is also used to support the nervous system and promote heart health.
Fennel essential oil has a sweet licorice-like flavor and is commonly used to regulate digestive problems in humans.
In cats, it may help balance the pituitary gland, thyroid, and pineal gland.
If your cat has fluid or toxins in its tissues, dilute application of fennel essential oil may help break down these unhealthy fluid accumulations and restore normalcy.
How to use essential oils for pets?
100% pure essential oils should be used on pets unless otherwise directed by your veterinarian, and always dilute before use. How much essential oil should I use?
You may hear different recommendations, and if you feel unsure, you should consult your veterinarian. However, a safer dilution ratio is 1:50, which is 1 drop of essential oil mixed with 50 drops of carrier oil, which includes coconut oil, olive oil or almond oil, etc.
Another recommendation is to mix 3 to 6 drops of essential oil with 30 ml (1 oz) of carrier oil.
Of course, it is important to adjust the number of essential oils you use according to the size and age of your pet. For smaller dogs and cats, as well as for puppies of dogs and cats, a larger dilution is needed.
To give your pet the benefits of essential oil fragrance, add 1 to 2 drops of essential oil to an aromatherapy diffuser and diffuse the fragrance in the living space for 10 to 15 minutes.
Considerations for using essential oils for pets
The following are some considerations for using essential oils with cats or dogs.
- Know your pet’s health and check with your veterinarian to see if you can use a certain essential oil on your pet.
- Observe your pet’s reaction to the essential oil and stop using it if you notice any adverse reactions.
- Never use essential oils in and around sensitive areas (including the eyes, ears, nose, and genitals).
- Do not add essential oils to your pet’s food or drinking water unless instructed to do so by your veterinarian.
- Do not use essential oils on puppies under 10 weeks of age.
- Do not use essential oils on pets with epilepsy.
- If your pet is pregnant or nursing, consult your veterinarian before using any essential oils. Please use special care if you need to use them, and you need to take special care when using essential oils yourself.
To be on the safe side, talk to your veterinarian before using essential oils on animals. For example, cats are particularly susceptible to reactions to essential oils.
Both cats and dogs have a very sensitive sense of smell, so it is important to use very small amounts of essential oils as well as diluting them with carrier oils.
It is also important to know which essential oils can or cannot be used for diffusion, and when using essential oils for diffusion, make sure that you leave an escape route for your pets so that they are not trapped when they feel uncomfortable.
It is not advisable to force essential oils on them if you find that they are clearly showing dislike.
What are prohibited essential oils for pets?
Prohibited essential oils for dogs
Clove, Garlic, Juniper, Rosemary, Tea tree, Thyme, Greenwinter
Prohibited essential oils for cats
Cinnamon, Cloves, Eucalyptus, Lemon, Peppermint, Fir, Tea tree, Thyme
Cats lack the enzyme glucuronosyltransferase in their liver and some components of essential oils cannot be metabolized, such as clove, thyme, and cinnamon, which are high in phenols.
30 Prohibited essential oils for any pets
Fennel, birch, bitter almond, portobello, calamus, camphor, cinnamon, quinoa, clove, garlic, horseradish, hyssop (except upland hyssop), juniper (except juniper berries), wormwood, mustard, oregano, caraway, red or white thyme, rue, cottonwood chrysanthemum, yellow camphor, spearmint, Ayurveda, tea tree, pine resin wood, cypress, wintergreen, absinthe, yarrow
If it is difficult to determine who is right and who is wrong for the time being, it is recommended to take the one that is agreed by many parties as an alternative. What is more crucial is that the animal knows what works for him or her.
How to apply essential oils to my pet?
According to Dog Oiler, the best carrier oil is coconut oil, which can be used with essential oils for pets. Not only does coconut oil reduce the possibility of skin allergies and nourish your pet’s skin, but studies have shown that coconut oil also has antifungal properties.
To reduce the chances of allergies and organ toxicity, we usually use essential oils for no more than two weeks and then provide a rest period. However, it is best handled by a professional who has experience in using essential oil care.
Signs and symptoms of essential oil poisoning in pets include
- Difficulty breathing
- Lethargy or weakness
- Muscle tremors
- Scratching of the mouth or face
- Lips, gums, tongue, redness or burning of the skin
- Difficulty walking or uncoordinated gait
Be sure to keep essential oils out of the reach of pets and children. If you suspect that your pet has had a toxic reaction to essential oils by mistake, contact your veterinarian immediately and bring the oils along with you to your veterinarian.
You can safely use certain essential oils to enhance your pet’s physical and emotional health, but you should also be aware of which oils not to use on cats and dogs.
You should use 100% pure, therapeutic grade and USDA certified organic essential oils for your pet.
There are many important considerations to understand before using essential oils for your pet and to involve your veterinarian in your pet’s essential oil regimen, especially if your pet is very young, old, or has ongoing health problems.