Disclaimer: This article was originally written and published by Two Oily Ems, you can check them out by clicking here!
Essential oils can play a vital role in supporting our pet’s emotional and physical wellbeing naturally (not to mention our own). It makes sense to look at them to add to your ‘tool bag’ of things to use for your animal’s health.
They can support our pets when used correctly with their skin, give relief to our senior pets muscles and joints, calm the emotions during the storm, provide a natural solution to fleas…the list goes on.
But what really are essential oils? They are basically nature’s natural defence and naturally occurring aromatic compounds found in plants, seeds, bark, stems, roots, and flowers. They are up to 70 times stronger than herbs so a little goes a long way, especially for our pets.
Safe to say it’s a bit of a minefield out there if you are new to essential oils or even if you are not new and just wondering how to use them with your pets.
So here are 3 points to consider before you get started.
1) Know your pet’s health
We always suggest discussing with your veterinarian before using the oils especially with certain conditions and medications or if your pet has an underlying concerning health issue and definitely in emergency situations.
Even though essential oils are natural they are potent and there are some oils that are not advised to be used for your pet. Getting a diagnosis and finding out what is going on with your pet will help you embark on what natural path may be supportive to your pet’s individual needs. This may include essential oils or other herbs and supplements or looking at diet. If it is a specific condition and you want to go down the natural path there are a few natural Vets that do support natural remedies so do your research and find the best option for your pet.
2) Research your oil brand
With the rise of popularity, there are plenty of essential oil brands on the market and it can make it confusing and overwhelming knowing what brand to choose. The main thing to be aware of is that not all essential oils are created equally and unfortunately when it says ‘pure’ on the bottle it might not always be the case. Many essential oils contain synthetics and chemicals that are not listed and can do more harm than good to you and your dog.
So before you go down to your local supermarket and pick up a bottle of essential oil from the shelf we highly recommend taking your time and do your research. Choosing a reputable brand and check the label to see if it contains information such as the scientific name, how it was extracted and even the lot number as this will show that that oil has gone through further testing to ensure purity. There is plenty of wonderful information and resources out there to help with your research. There’s no point starting to make positive healthy choices with a poor quality oil and knowledge is power.
3) Why do you need them and what to choose?
Do you have an over-excited or anxious puppy, a very itchy dog or a senior pet that needs support with their muscles and joints? It’s good to have an idea of why you want to use them and then get good advice with what oils are going to be appropriate and safe to use with pets.
There are oils that certainly support all of those things but whatever the reason it’s worth remembering that it’s important to also look at the big picture.
Often skin issues start with diet. Our little dog Sunny was plagued with skin issues for years while taking several medications. A switch in her diet in conjunction with the oils made all the difference and she hasn’t needed medication for her skin since then.
In the case of a behaviour issue, it always starts with appropriate training and looking at what is happening in the pet’s life. For example, is there a new addition in the household? Or has there been a recent move? Essential oils can be a wonderful addition to your pet’s routine whether it be behavioural or otherwise but take in to account other factors also to incorporate in your dog’s regime.
So where to go from here?
There’s no doubt about it essential oils can be a wonderful addition to any household but its definitely worth considering your pets when embarking on your oily journey and getting educated on how to use them safely and effectively around your pets.
We have loved our journey so far using essential oils with our beautiful pups, Sunny and Grommie, and educating ourselves over the years to help others make safe and healthy choices for their pets. We are passionate and love sharing our knowledge and experiences to help others.