Using your essential oils safely around animals

Hesitation station may be a familiar stop when you think about using your essential oils safely both around your animals, and to treat and aid them. However, with awareness, information, and care, you should feel confident when using your essential oils around your pets.

There are a few guidelines to keep in mind when utilising the beauty of essential oils, particularly with animals. Similarly to children and the elderly, one needs to consider the amount of oil used for the process, and for aromatherapy one would need to pay attention to the length of time that it will be diffused. Always start with a small amount and monitor your pet’s behaviour – at least for about 20 minutes when using new oils. They will let you know if the oil is agreeable or not. You could even let them self-select the oil by seeing which ones they gravitate towards, but be sure to introduce the oils with the caps and lids on tight, as your pets may have a very sensitive nose.

Aromatic diffusion is one of the most highly recommended ways to introduce essential oils to our beloved furry and feathered companions. Aromatic diffusion can bring about a wonderful array of benefits for every family member who we hold dear to our hearts.

Escentia’s ultrasonic diffusers are a must-have addition to your home to support overall wellbeing and health – you’ll soon be able to find and buy these directly off of our website.

It is advisable to use the recommended quantity of oil, which is around 3 or 4 drops. An important note for use with diffusers is that certain oils with a thick viscosity may tend to clog your unit, such as Patchouli and Vetiver. Less is more in the beginning, and you can always increase your concentration if your desired outcome isn’t reached. However, always remember that each animal is entirely unique and your pet may experience a different level of sensitivity in comparison to others.

ways to use

The main ways to use essential oils with your pets can be described either aromatically, topically or internally.

It is extremely important to note that Escentia does not advise that essential oils be used internally – for both two-legged and four-legged friends. If desired, this process should only be undergone under the advice of a qualified aromatherapist

Aromatic methods can include:

  • Diffusion with a unit.
  • Steam inhalation by using 1-2 drops of oil in hot water.
  • Humidifier, ensuring that your apparatus is safe to use with essential oils.
  • Spraying or misting your oils into the air.
  • Directly allowing your pet to inhale a diluted drop from your hands.
  • On a cotton ball, cloth or blanket that is near your pet, or their bedding.

Topical methods include:

  • Direct application through massage motions, petting along the back after applying the oil to your hands.
  • Applying to the reflexology points, between the paw pads and back paws.
  • Water misting onto the animal’s fur, avoiding contact with eyes and other sensitive areas.
  • Mixing a drop in their shampoo or conditioner when grooming and bathing.
  • Applying to the tips of your pets’ ears, called Ear Tipping.
  • Cold or hot compresses soaked in water with a drop of essential oil, wrung out and applied to the intended area.

When diffusing oils or utilising any essential oils around your pets, it is advised to follow the guidelines below:

 

  • Only use your oils for 10 to 15 minutes at a time.
  • Use pure, high quality, therapeutic grade essential oils only.
  • Use your oils in a well-ventilated room.
  • Make sure that an exit is available if need be.
  • Avoid diffusing if your pet is asthmatic, nursing or pregnant.
  • Consider the individual weight, sensitivity profile and immune health of your pet.
  • Consider the placement of your diffuser or tools, ensuring that no accidents may occur!

our canine companions

Dogs have generally been known to respond wonderfully to the behavioural benefits of essential oils. However, considering variations in breed and size, one needs to pay close attention to their unique sensitivity.

  • Always use proper ratios of dilution – taking into account the size, weight and age of your dog.
  • Avoid using the oil on your dog’s nose, eyes, inner ears and other sensitive areas.
  • Do not use oils while using any other topical medications.

For dogs, exercise caution when diffusing:

Tea Tree, Cajeput, Niaouli, Camphor and Wintergreen. Avoid topical and internal use of Birch, Tea Tree, Wintergreen, and be careful with hot oils such as Oregano, Cassia, Cinnamon, Clove, Rosemary and Thyme.

our feline friends

Cats find some chemical constituents, like ketones and phenols, more difficult to eliminate from their systems as they lack an enzyme in their liver that metabolizes volatile molecules and many other substances.  This makes cats in particular more susceptible to toxicity. Oils to stay away from are those high in phenols and eugenols, as well as d-limonene.

Use of the following oils for cats should be considered with caution:

Basil, Birch, Cinnamon, Clove, Fennel, Tea Tree, Cajeput, Niaouli, Oregano, Peppermint, Thyme, Rosemary, Wintergreen, Tagetes, Sage, Valerian, Eucalyptus, Camphor, Spearmint, Lemon, Lime, Orange, Tangerine, Spruce and Spike Lavandin.

rabbits rodents & pocket pets

Those with Pocket pets should exercise caution with oils that have anti-bacterial properties, such as Cinnamon, Cassia and Oregano. These little creatures are hind-gut fermenters and their digestive flora is quite sensitive. However, it’s said that rabbits really love citrus oils and soothing oils. Frankincense, Lavender and Roman Chamomile are safe to use when highly diluted.

In general, it is best to follow these guidelines when using oils with Pocket Pets:

  • Use 3-4 drops of essential oil in total in your diffuser and leave the door to the room open, or diffuse in a very well-ventilated area.
  • When highly diluted, these oils can be applied topically.

be confident!

Most people won’t think twice about the chemical air fresheners in their homes that they often utilize around their pets, and there are plenty of myths surrounding the use of oils around animals, which are often untrue.

Doing some further reading is always recommended! You know your beloved pet and their behaviour, so remember to trust in your ability to notice any changes and differences.

In most situations, there isn’t any cause for panic, and your veterinarian will be happy to help.

However, if used mindfully and carefully, there are only incredible rewards to reap when using your essential oils safely around animals.

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