Essential Oils for Dog Anxiety
For you and me, holidays are a cause for celebration. Take New Year’s Eve, for example: The end of the old year and the ushering in of the new year (and the symbolic fresh start it represents) often fills us with joy, hope, and optimism. But for our dogs, maybe not so much. The fireworks (both big and small) going off , thunderstorms, especially if you live in Queensland and the hustle and bustle of Christmas and New Year’s…all of these can and do stress our dogs out. And it’s not just the holidays that can cause stress in dogs. Trips to the vet, the groomer, being left alone, thunderstorms, and a myriad of other things can send our furry friends into a nervous, jittery, frenetic state. They can get stressed—what most people refer to as anxiety. Now, just to be clear, if your dog is experiencing true, extreme anxiety, you should talk to your vet, as that’s a medical issue. But stress—the kind most dogs experience in the situations I mention here—can often be significantly eased or even eliminated with the use of high-quality essential oils .
When it comes to using essential oils to help reduce your dog’s stress/anxiety, you have a bunch of different options. Feel free to use any of the oils I mention below (or experiment with other oils). They can be used alone or paired up with other oils—try different combinations to see which works best for your pet. Remember, though, some oils can be harmful to cats, so if you have feline friends, do your research before using essential oils around them.
One of my favorite oils to use for promoting calm and relaxation is lavender. Frankincense is another of my go-tos. Chamomile, orange, lemon, ylang ylang and bergamot are also great choices.
To use the oils, you can diffuse them in a room (add a few drops of your chosen oil(s), along with water, to your diffuser, and let it run for a few hours). Some people also like to dab a few drops of their chosen oil(s) on the back of their dog’s collar, or lightly mist their dog’s bedding with the oils. If you decide to go that route, it’s easy to make a spray (which you can also lightly spritz on your dog—taking care to avoid their eyes, nose, and ears, of course).
To make a spray, I often put 100ml of water or organic witch hazel in an amber glass bottle. Then, I add a few drops of my chosen oil or oils (such as lavender or frankincense) to the water or witch hazel. I shake the bottle to blend it, and voilà: a homemade essential oil blend you can easily use as needed.
So there you have it: a safe, effective, easy way to ease your dog’s stress. You can use the oils as often as you want, and as an added bonus, they’ll help ease your stress too!