Essential oils are awesome, and so are dogs. Adding essential oils to your diffuser can bring tons of benefits, but did you know not all essential oils are safe to use around your furry friends? That's right, some essential oils are straight-up toxic to dogs. It's obviously important to educate yourself on what essential oils you can use around your dogs and which ones you should steer clear of.
Yes, we love everything about essential oils and find their health benefits fascinating. However, that's not to say we don't think you should be cautious around your dogs and other pets.
Essential Oil Diffusers and Pet Safety
The use of essential oils has sky-rocketed in the past few years. The effects and benefits essential oils give to humans are numerous, but the health effects they can have on your pets are not the same.
Some people find it confusing that essential oils can harm pets, but not small children or humans. We're here to tell you to be cautious because it's a very real thing.
Dogs and cats naturally have a more keen sense of smell, so it makes sense that a strong aroma being diffused into the air could cause discomfort. It may smell amazing to you but could be very uncomfortable and over-powering to your pet.
The smell isn't the only issue; when it comes to essential oils, they have highly reactive molecules that can be reactive to our bodies and our pets. That's why they're used among so many people. They can be harmful to pets because the high reactivity in the product can mess up your pet's natural body chemistry quite easily.
Humans are more flexible about what they can eat, drink, and do to their bodies. We can process a lot of odd things. Animals aren't like us; they often stick to a strict diet of puppy or kitty chow except for left-overs every once in a while. So it only makes sense that something as potent as an essential oil would cause issues with your pet.
There are even a few essential oils that are considered straight-up toxic to your pets. Eucalyptus oil, tea tree oil, cinnamon, citrus, peppermint, pine, wintergreen, and ylang-ylang are harmful to your pets whether they're licked up after a spill, inhaled via the diffuser, or applied to the skin.
Even if you don't plan to put these oils in the diffuser, we suggest you keep them out of reach from your pets as best you can!
What Are the Benefits of Essential Oils?
Essential oils are natural oils that are extracted from plants, flowers, and bark. They are extracted by steaming the plants and sweating out the oils.
Essential oils are often used for aromatherapy and alternative medicine. It's a more natural approach to medicine and healing. When it comes to people, essential oils have tons of uses. Some people just use them because they smell great and often leave you in a chilled-out, relaxed headspace. However, some people use them for their soothing or healing properties.
Most essential oils have antibacterial properties that can help treat flu symptoms, headaches, and cold symptoms.
Essential oils are also commonly used in the beauty industry. They're often very moisturizing and can leave your hair or skin looking great. However, it's important to remember that if you're applying an essential oil topically, it must be diluted with a carrier oil beforehand.
Essential Oils To Steer Clear of Around Your Dogs
Yes, some essential oils are a total no-go when it comes to diffusing them around your pets, but that's not to say you can't diffuse any. Pets get anxious too, and some essential oils can help soothe your pet's anxiety, as well as help their health in other aspects.
It's important to know exactly which essential oils are okay to use and which aren't. It can be hard to figure this information out on your own, so we've formulated a list for you! While these are all the essential oils we could find that could be harmful to your pets, it can also depend on your pet and what can irritate them.
Pretty much any essential oil with a very strong smell will most likely cause irritation to your pet. It's important to remember to never diffuser citrus around your dog.
- Citrus (d-limonene)
- Sweet birch
- Tea tree (melaleuca)
- Ylang ylang
Essential Oils Safe for Dogs
Now that you know what not to diffuse around your pup, let's talk about what you can diffuse around them, as well as the benefits they could reap from them.
- Lavender oil
As you can see, the list for what you can diffuse around your dog is much shorter than what you can not, but all these essential oils have great benefits and smell great.
Myrrh has tons of benefits when it comes to health. It can kill harmful bacteria, support hair and skin health, possibly heal sores, kill certain parasites, and combat pain and swelling.
The main benefit of diffusing frankincense is relaxation because of the deep woody aroma. Adding frankincense to your diffuser can help you unwind. We suggest diffusing this first in the morning when you drink your coffee and prepare for the day.
Using chamomile essential oil in your diffuser can help ease your stress and promote a better sleep schedule. It's best to diffuse chamomile right before bed; it'll help you get those needed ZZZ's.
Being one of the more versatile and popular essential oils, lavender is a great oil to diffuse—even if you have pups running around!
This essential oil promotes relaxation, and it's believed to treat anxiety as well.
Many people have a love-hate relationship with the smell of ginger. We've found either people love it or hate it. Suppose you're someone that enjoys this rich and dramatic scent. In that case, we think you'll feel even better about diffusing this in your home after you hear about the health benefits it offers.
By inhaling ginger, it can calm nausea, as well as help relax you!
How To Know If Your Pet Is Having a Reaction To Your Diffused Oils
It can be super scary if your pet starts acting weird. Unlike people, they obviously can't communicate what exactly is wrong.
Here are some surefire signs your pup may be experiencing a bad reaction to your essential oils.
When humans have a poor reaction to something or have consumed something poisonous, they first act jittery and fast. If your doggo is acting different and extra hyper, this might be a bad sign!
You know your dog, and you can usually tell if something isn't right. You need to contact someone immediately. Even after-hours and the vet is closed, you can always try the pet poison hotline. They will help you pinpoint what is wrong, as well as help you fix the problem. The key in a situation like this is to act fast!
- If essential oil gets on your dog's skin, wash it off right away.
- Make sure you know which oil your pup got into, and bring it or the bottle to the vet with you.
- Wait to treat your dog until you've consulted with an animal medication professional.
The bottom line is that like many things in your house, essential oils aren't always safe for pets, and especially dogs. It might be a bit dramatic to take all these precautions now, but trust us, you will regret it later on if you don't
Having pets is a big responsibility, and the last thing you want is for them to get sick over something as silly as diffusing essential oil. The great thing is, you don't even have to put your diffuser up for good; tons of essential oils are friendly. We just suggest you keep an eye on them. First, they might have an odd reaction to the product.