Essential oils can be very powerful healing tools. But some can be very dangerous for your dog.
Lavender oil is a safe essential oil for dogs … but only when used with care.
Today I want to talk about all the ways that lavender oil can help your dog.
But first … Is lavender safe for dogs? And how should you use this essential oil?
When used incorrectly, lavender essential oil can be dangerous for dogs. Here are some things to consider before you use lavender oil on your dog …
Before you use any essential oil for your dog it is a good idea to talk to your holistic vet. They will be able to help you find the right oil and show you how to use it for your dog.
It’s also important that you tell your vet about any natural products you use for your dog … including essential oils. That way you can avoid interactions with other supplements or solutions.
Unlike other essential oils, humans can use lavender oil undiluted on non-sensitive skin.
While this is also true of dogs and lavender oil, dogs have a much better sense of smell then our own … you don’t want to overwhelm them.
If you’re using lavender oil for topical application, dilute it with a carrier or base oil. Good options include …
Kristen Leigh Bell, a Certified Master Aromatherapist recommends …
10 drops of essential oil to ½ oz of carrier oil
When using lavender essential oil on your dog, you do not want your dog to ingest the oil. It could make them very sick.
“With ingestion, various risks increase, including gastric irritation, interactions with conventional medications, and fetal damage in pregnancy. And long-term, depending on dose and frequency, there’s a risk of accumulation in the body, possibly leading to systemic toxicity. You may not notice anything, but some types of toxicity do not announce their presence in the early stages.”
– Robert Tisserand, Master Aromatherapist
Instead try these methods for using lavender oil on your dog …
It’s also important to keep the bottle of essential oil and any mixtures out of your dog’s reach. This will reduce the risk of them getting their paws on it and ingesting it.
When using essential oils in your home, give your dog an escape route. Leave the door open when blending, formulating or diffusing so that he can leave if he wants.
Before using any oil on your dog, let him smell it first so he can get a sense of it. He will tell you he doesn’t like it.
Signs that your dog does’nt like the oil after smelling it include …
If he reacts with any of these, consider a different solution.
When introducing a new essential oil to your dog, start by applying a small amount. Watch your dog to see how he and his body react.
If there are any adverse side effects, allergic reactions or signs of discomfort … consider a new solution.
Allergic reactions to lavender pollen and essential oil are rare but it’s something you need to be aware of.
When starting out with any essential oil, start small and watch for signs that it isn’t a good match for your dog.
Here are some things you’ll want to watch out for …
If you see any of these symptoms, you’ll want to stop using the oil.
Lavender oil also doesn’t contain any antioxidants which means it may oxidize once opened … even if the cap is on. If you use oxidized oil, it can cause an allergic response. To prevent this, buy high quality oil and do not use it after it has been sitting for long periods of time.
When selecting a lavender oil, choose a high-quality oil from a reputable company.
This will help you avoid oils with contaminants and adulterants … additives which can cause adverse side effects or be less effective.
Like Lavender 40/42 essential oil … this is often a blend with other oils or synthetic linalyl acetate.
To find out if an oil is of high quality, reach out to the company. A company with a good product will be happy to answer any questions you may have. And they will provide a gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC/MS) test when requested. This test will help you determine the purity of the oil.
Other things to look for include …
There’s no regulatory system in place for essential oils. If you’re new to essential oils or have some doubt about what to use … consult an aromatherapy expert or holistic practitioner.
Lavender essential oil is a versatile oil with many uses for your dog.
Lavender acts as a deterrent for insects and pests. It will help keep away the fleas, ticks and mosquitos.
Homemade Mosquito and Tick Repellent
If your dog does happen to get bit or develops itchy, swollen red skin for other reasons (like allergies) … lavender can help soothe your dog’s skin.
This is because lavender is a natural anti-inflammatory, antihistamine, pain reliever and antibacterial.
If your dog has itchy skin, try this recipe below …
Recipe For Itchy Skin
Massage the mixture onto your dog’s affected area.
Lavender oil can also help with joint pain. And that’s because of the anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties.
Use the same recipe as the one for itchy skin listed above.
Lavender oil can also soothe inflammation associated with burns.
You can use Kristen Leigh Bell’s recommendation for topical application …
Add 10 drops of lavender essential oil to ½ oz of carrier oil and then apply to the burn.
Lavender has soothing effects that can calm anxiety and reduce stress. In one study, researchers looked at the effects of lavender oil on traveling dogs. A small amount of the oil can calm your dog during travel and reduce excitement.
You can also use it to ease your dog’s …
To reduce anxiety and ease depression, put a few drops on a piece of cardboard and put it near his bed or carrier.
You can also try this essential oil spray …
Recipe For Calming Spray
Like humans, the motion of a vehicle can interact with your dog’s nervous system. This can result in excessive drooling, heavy breathing and nausea. To help limit the effects of motion on your dog when in the car, try lavender oil.
You can use the calming spray recipe above. Spray it on your dog or on a blanket you bring in the car with him.
Or use diluted lavender oil (10 drops of lavender essential oil to ½ oz of carrier oil).
The calming effects of lavender oil make it a useful tool when you want to condition your dog to a new space.
Spray the calming spray (recipe above) in the space before you bring your dog in. Or apply a small amount of diluted oil to his collar or a bandana.
The same components that make lavender a great solution to relieve anxiety … also make it an excellent sleep aid.
Use diluted oil or calming spray (recipe above) on your dog’s bed to help him sleep better.
If your dog’s getting stinky, lavender oil can be a great way to refresh his coat. Try this shampoo with lavender oil and other extracts to get him clean again.
But be careful, too many baths can strip the natural oils and good bacteria from your dog’s skin. Between baths, try this deodorizing spray.
When used correctly, lavender oil can be an effective tool. It’s a versatile oil that can help with many issues your dog may be experiencing.
Always use diluted lavender essential oil for your dog. Read your dog’s reactions … and when in doubt consult an expert.
That way you will keep your dog safe while helping give him the comfort he needs to enjoy every day.
This content was originally published here.