DISCLAIMER: This post is about the use of essential oils with dogs only. Cats are excluded from this article because of various sources citing the harmful affects of essential oils on felines.

Have you ever considered using essential oils on your dog? Maybe you’re looking to improve your furry friend’s odor, or interested in trying out essential oils as a natural calming agent for your anxious pup. If you search online, you can find an essential oil recommended for almost every ailment that exists – that is to say, there are hundreds, and doing the research can feel a bit daunting. Instead, we’ve boiled it down to the nitty gritty, a starter kit of sorts, to help you decide whether it’s something you would like to explore for your four-legged pal…

The Low Down:

Essential oils have been around for thousands of years, and are most commonly known for their spiritual and emotional purposes. Add a drop or two of lavender oil in the bath, for example, and you may feel especially soothed and relaxed. Although it may seem odd at first to consider using essential oils on your pet, aromatherapists continue to use and recommend oils for canines, for an array of medicinal properties, including both physical (the immune system, teething, congestion) and emotional (separation anxiety or stress) relief.

A Few Ways to Use Essential Oils on Your Dog:

To begin, always use 100% pure essential oils on your pup, and make sure to dilute it with a carrier oil like olive oil or jojoba oil before applying. The higher the quality of the essential oil, the better. Many are safe to use around Fido, but you can find a complete list here. It’s worth noting that a few have been cited as unsafe and even toxic to use on your dog, including anise, thyme, wormwood, and wintergreen.

It can be fun to experiment with homemade remedies for your pet. Fear your house may be starting to smell like Sparky? Try your hand at an all-natural, homemade air freshener, by combining water, baking soda, and a few drops of our favorite essential oils (as long as they are included in the safe list). Spritz that on any furniture that your dog frequents, including his or her dog bed.

Bug Repellent: Citronella, peppermint, and lemon are all known to repel pesky insects. Dilute a few of each into a bandanna to be tied around your dog’s collar as an aromatic flea collar for the hot, buggy months of summer.

Curious to see more? This site has much more information, including recipes to improve arthritis, motion sickness, and more. Have you ever used essential oils on your dog? Is it a do or a don’t in your household? Tell us in the comment section below!