Essential oils are popular products for alleviating stress, improving sleep quality, and maintaining the functions of the body. While essential oils can support your health, certain oils can have harmful, adverse effects on any animals you have at home.
As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to keep your pet safe. You must be conscious of the products you are using around your dogs.
WOW Skin Science is all about holistic beauty backed by science, emphasizing being cruelty-free. Therefore, we are committed to helping you improve your well-being without sacrificing your dog's health.
So, the question is, how can you reap the potential health benefits of essential oils while keeping your furry friends safe? Today, we will be unpacking everything about essential oils and explaining which oils to avoid and which to use.
Table of Contents:
- What Are Essential Oils?
- How To Incorporate Essential Oils
- What Are the Benefits of Essential Oil for Your Pup
- Helps Reduce Stress
- Promotes Healthy Sleep
- What Are Potential Dangers of Essential Oils for Dogs?
- 5 Safe Essential Oils for Your Pup
- Lavender Oil
- Frankincense Oil
- Jasmine Oil
- Rosemary Oil
- Cedarwood Oil
What Are Essential Oils?
Essential oils are compounds made using plant extracts to capture the plant's scent and profile. The aroma is acquired through a process called distillation, which separates substances from liquid mixtures, usually steam or water.
These plant extracts are then combined with a carrier oil – a base oil used to dilute essential oils before they are for essential oil diffusers or application to your pet's skin.
The aromatic compound is intended to support the user's well-being with direct effects varying based on its central ingredients. You should never consume essential oils. Rather than boosting your health, this will simply harm it.
How To Incorporate Essential Oils
That being said, there are a couple of different ways to use essential oils. One of them is via topical application. There are essential oils that can be applied directly to your skin.
Many essential oils require dilution to prevent skin irritation. It is essential that you understand the essential oil you are using and how it can influence your body before putting it anywhere on your skin.
The more concentrated your essential oil is, the more dilution it could need to avoid accidental toxicity due to product misuse. The plant chemicals are absorbed when essential oils are applied to your skin. There are different methods for doing this effectively.
For example, many users have found that applying their oils in combination with heat boosts the positive effects of the compound—one popular way is using a few drops of essential oil in your warm bath.
It is also believed that certain areas of your body have an easier and more effective time absorbing essential oils during massage – such as the temples.
Your temple is on the side of your head where the frontal, sphenoid, temporal, and parietal skull bones are fused together. The temples are a major pressure point that can benefit from stress relief.
Applying essential oils to your temple can help support relaxation and, in turn, improve your sleep. Another popular area is to apply essential oils to your feet.
Though there is no proof that essential oils are more rapidly absorbed through your feet, we know that several reflexology points are located on them. It can also be helpful to massage essential oils strategically on your feet, based on the location of reflexology points.
Although topical application is a viable option for using essential oils, the most common method is via an oil diffuser. Essential oils can be used for aromatherapy, a holistic treatment that uses plant extracts to boost one's well-being.
Oil diffusers, sometimes also called aroma lamps, heat the essential oil, which breaks it down into smaller molecules and allows it to evaporate naturally. The aroma of the diffused oils is projected into the air for your inhalation.
When you diffuse essential oils, it can directly affect your limbic system, which is the area of your brain involved with regulating your emotional and behavioural responses and facilitating memory storage. Using essential oils for aromatherapy can support your limbic system.
What Are the Benefits of Essential Oil for Your Pup
Now that you understand the composition of essential oils and the most popular application methods, we can begin to discuss some of the benefits they can have for our pets.
Helps Reduce Stress
As previously mentioned, essential oils are commonly used for aromatherapy. When successful, essential oils can be great components of stress reduction. The calming effects of the natural plant extract aroma are known to reduce stress and tension.
For example, lavender, one of the most versatile essential oils, offers a calming effect and promotes relaxation for humans and pups alike.
Promotes Healthy Sleep
People will often turn to essential oils as a sleep aid, hoping that the fragrances will help them relax and drift to sleep. In fact, many users have found that smelling the oils at night has improved their sleep quality, and this effect can be seen in some animals, as well as calming scents helping them get to sleep.
What Are Potential Dangers of Essential Oils for Dogs?
With so many potential benefits, it is difficult to believe that essential oils can be so harmful to our pets. There is a major misconception that because essential oils are natural, they are incapable of harming animals.
In actuality, essential oils can have adverse effects on dogs in the same way that human beings sometimes have allergies or sensitivities to natural ingredients. Many essential oils are toxic to dogs, whether they come in direct contact with the product or via a diffuser.
Diffusers use water vapor to release tiny droplets of essential oil into the air. Though the emitted fragrances may not affect you negatively, they still may be harmful to your pets.
Remember, dogs have a stronger sense of smell than we do. Inhaling the diffused essential oils may negatively affect your dog's respiratory system, particularly if exposed in an enclosed space for a long time without circulating fresh air.
Central nervous system and respiratory issues like excessive drooling, pawing, and shaking are signs your pup needs veterinary attention.
A general rule of thumb is that pet parents should never use essential oils around a dog younger than eight weeks old since their immune system is not yet developed enough to handle the intense fragrance.
Once you decide to start using essential oils around your dog, we recommend a slow transition in which you use a diluted or small amount of the product to see how your pet reacts.
Most importantly, make sure that you are researching the type of essential oil that you are going to use around your dog. This will guarantee that your dog will not fall victim to essential oil poisoning through inhalation or contact.
Several essential oils are safe for dogs, including lavender, which can be calming for dogs and cats alike when used in moderation.
As for essential oils that are unhealthy for your pets, here is a list of oils to avoid:
- Eucalyptus Oil
- Pine Oil
- Citrus Oil
- Tea Tree Oil
- Peppermint Oil
- Cinnamon Oil
5 Safe Essential Oils for Your Pup
If you are prepared to use essential oils around your pet, it is of the utmost importance that you select a quality oil that is non-toxic to animals.
For your convenience, here is a list of essential oils that are okay to diffuse around your dog and ways in which they can enhance your well-being.
Lavender essential oil is often regarded as the safest option for essential oils for pets. Lavender oil is a popular choice for relaxation on account of its calming properties.
The use of lavender oil can help support feelings of emotional wellness and support sleep quality.
Frankincense oil is safe to use around dogs and may assist in soothing discomfort. Its capabilities come from the disinfectant and astringent qualities of frankincense, which is an aromatic resin.
Jasmine oil is safe to use around pets, considering its popular scent. Jasmine is most commonly sought after for its wellness benefits that support mental health.
Rosemary oil is a safe oil to use with your dog around. Instead of being used as a relaxer, like most other essential oils, rosemary oil can improve feelings of alertness and wake your senses up. The stimulation is believed to help with memory retention.
In addition, rosemary essential oil helps stimulate healthy hair growth, repels bugs, and increases circulation, which is essential for a healthy coat.
Cedarwood oil is safe to use if you have a dog. As its name suggests, cedarwood oil carries a wood-like scent that is said to support energy levels, relieve feelings of overwhelming, and repels pests like fleas and ticks.
While there are risks to using essential oils around your dog, there are ways to do so that will allow you to reap the benefits of aromatherapy without harming your furry friend.
We recommend looking to WOW Skin Science for your essential oil needs. In addition to teaching, you how to use your oils cautiously, we are also committed to providing you with natural and effective products.
WOW Skin Science carries single oils, including all of the oils mentioned in the "5 safe essential oils" list above. Additionally, we offer essential oil blends that are formulated to tend to your specific needs, whether that be a boost of energy or a reduction of stress.
After all, aromatherapy is a fantastic practice when done safely and with the right tools.
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