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If you’re looking for natural remedies for your pooch, you might have run across information on essential oils for dogs. But are essential oils safe for dogs? Will they help or hurt your beloved pet?

Some essential oils have been shown to be helpful. But others may be toxic to dogs. Let’s take a look at which ones might be good for your pet, and others you need to stay away from. Always talk to your vet before using essential oils for your dogs.

How to Use Essential Oils for Dogs

If you’re interested in using essential oils for your pet, know that oils must always be diluted. To dilute essential oil, put about 3-5 drops into an ounce of carrier oil, such as coconut oil. Otherwise, the undiluted aroma will be too strong for you and your pet.

After you dilute the oil, put it in an essential oil diffuser. An essential oil diffuser creates a mist of diluted oil. When you diffuse essential oils, you send the aroma (and tiny essential oil drops) into the air.

Add a few essential oil drops into the essential oil diffuser. When you diffuse essential oils, both you and your pet can enjoy the aroma. But if your dog doesn’t seem to like essential oil drops, even though you dilute them, stop using them. Diffused essential oils aren’t for every pet.1

Essential Oils Considered Safe for Dogs

Research indicates that essential oils for dogs can deliver health benefits. In fact, there are some veterinarians who use them for their furry clients.2

These are some of the essential oils that are generally considered safe for dogs:

Lavender Oil

Lavender oil is a popular essential oil. Turns out, it shows promise as one of the more effective essential oils for dogs, helping to calm anxiety.

Does Fido get anxious during car rides? Lavender oil might help. According to one study, dogs exposed to lavender oil scent had much less travel anxiety than those who didn’t.3 Diffuse some in your home before you and your pet get into the car.

Lavender oil may also help your pooch’s skin. It is one of the more effective natural remedies for dogs that experience a lot of itching.4 But you need to be careful when putting essential oils on a dog’s body or fur. It could be dangerous if he or she licks off the oil. Talk to your vet first.

Chamomile Oil

essential oils for dogs | Ultimate Pet NutritionSome studies show that both humans and dogs could benefit from this oil. It helps with skin irritation, wounds, and other skin problems. It has also been shown to help dogs suffering from anxiety.5 This could be another option of your pooch gets anxious on car rides.

Cedarwood Oil

Cedarwood oil has been used as one of the natural remedies for coughs as well as joint discomfort. It also helps calm anxiety, so it may help dogs experiencing issues such as aggression or shyness.6

Other Safe Oils for Dogs

Here are a few other essential oils for dogs you might want to consider. Again, though, make sure you talk to your vet first before you use them.

  • Frankincense oil – This oil could help boost the immune system.
  • Fennel oil – Fennel oil helps to reduce fluid under the skin and may also help support your dog’s natural detoxification system. This could help cleanse toxins from their body.
  • Cardamom oil – Cardamom oil has antibacterial properties. It may help increase the appetite of a dog who isn’t eating enough.
  • Helichrysum oil – Helichrysum oil also has antibacterial properties. It may also help keep your pet’s skin healthy.7

Essential Oils Toxic to Dogs

Several essential oils, such as clove, juniper, and garlic, are toxic to dogs. Other essential oils toxic to dogs include tea tree, rosemary, thyme, and wintergreen.8

Call your vet or an emergency clinic if you have reason to suspect your dog has been exposed to any of these oils.

What About Spearmint Oil and Peppermint Oil?

You might have also heard that spearmint oil and peppermint oil are safe for dogs. Well, some say yes and others say no. For example, there is evidence that peppermint oil is good for dogs suffering from nausea or upset stomach. It may also be a mental stimulant.9

On the other hand, though, peppermint oil has also been linked to serious problems in some pets.10  Spearmint oil has been associated with issues such as lethargy and diarrhea.11

Because of this conflicting research, never use either peppermint or spearmint oil until you talk to your vet first.

How to Use Essential Oils 

If you’re interested in using essential oils for your pet, know that oils must always be diluted. To dilute an essential oil, put about 3-5 drops into an ounce of carrier oil, such as coconut oil. Otherwise, the undiluted aroma will be too strong for you and your pet.

After you dilute the oil, put it in an essential oil diffuser. An essential oil diffuser creates a mist of diluted oil. When you diffuse essential oils, you send the aroma (and tiny essential oil drops) into the air.

Add a few essential oil drops into the essential oil diffuser. When you diffuse essential oils, both you and your pet can enjoy the aroma. But if your dog doesn’t seem to like essential oil drops, even though you dilute them, stop using them. Diffused essential oils aren’t for every pet.

essential oils for dogs | Ultimate Pet Nutrition

 

Essential Oils Safe for Dogs: The Nose Knows

Your dog’s sense of smell is much better than yours. You may smell a light fragrance, but your pup might be overwhelmed. That’s one reason diluting before you diffuse essential oils is so important.

If you’re unsure about using even diluted essential oils for your dog, talk to your vet.

Learn More:
Strange Dog Behavior: Why is My Dog Licking the Floor?
The Ultimate Guide to Dog Poop (everything you need to know)
Can Dogs Eat Grapes? The Answer is Truly Life-Saving

Sources
1 https://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/5-steps-to-make-essential-oils-safe-for-dogs/
2 https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/health/are-essential-oils-safe-for-dogs/
3 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16978115
4 https://www.rover.com/blog/essential-oils-safe-dog/
5 https://petcentral.chewy.com/health-wellness-chamomile-for-dogs-4-ways-to-use-it/
6 https://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/essential-oils-for-your-dog/
7 https://www.huffpost.com/entry/pet-aromatherapy_b_877199
8 https://www.vmdtoday.com/news/are-essential-oils-harmful-to-cats-and-dogs
9 http://veterinarycalendar.dvm360.com/aromatherapy-proceedings?id=&sk=&date=&pageID=4
10 https://ecommons.cornell.edu/bitstream/handle/1813/56135/peppermint-oil-MRP-NYSIPM.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y
11 https://wagwalking.com/condition/mint-poisoning