18 Essential Oils That Are Safe for Dogs


You might already be a fan of essential oils, whether you use them to combat health issues like a stuffy nose or headache or use the calming scent of lavender to help you relax in the evening.

But what about your dog? Can your canine companion reap the same benefits from essential oils as you do?

Essential oils have been used for ages to help people with all sorts of problems.

Safe Essential Oils for Dogs

Eucalyptus can help open up nasal passages, making it easier to breathe, while Marjoram oil has been shown to help with certain skin conditions.

Recently, people have found that dogs can also experience positive results from certain essential oils. 

But, not all oils are safe for dogs.

What essential oils are safe for dogs

Not every essential oil is safe to use with your dog.  Some you'll need to avoid at all cost, and some that are safe to use with dogs.

Here are the 18 Essential Oils that are safe for dogs and its uses:

1.  Cardamom for digestion

It's useful for fighting heartburn, aiding in digestion, and boosting the appetite. It also helps support the respiratory system.

2.  Carrot Seed for anti-bacterial properties

This oil has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties and suitable for sensitive skin issues. It also can aid in healing scars.

3. Cedarwood for flea repellant

Cedarwood can be used as an antiseptic, skin and coat conditioner, and also as a flea repellant.

4. Chamomile for nervous dogs

There are two types of Chamomile oil that you can use for your pup.

German Chamomile works as an anti-inflammatory and is relatively gentle. It is also helpful for skin issues like eczema, allergic reactions, and to soothe minor burns.

Roman Chamomile is also very gentle, but it has different uses. This oil can be helpful for pain relief. Pain from things like cramps, muscle spasms, and even for puppies who are teething. It also has calming qualities, making it an excellent choice for nervous or anxious dogs.  

5. Clary Sage for nerves

This oil has calming effects and may help soothe nervous pups, but is very strong. So, it is vital to dilute the oil properly and use it very sparingly.

6. Eucalyptus for inflammation and congestion

This oil is often used for its anti-inflammatory qualities and anti-viral capabilities.  Eucalyptus is commonly used to help ease chest congestion and stuffy noses since it works as an expectorant.

There are several different types of Eucalyptus oil. Some have a stronger scent than others, so you may want to opt for the ones with a milder scent for your pooch. 

7. Frankincense for immune support

This oil is still being studied for its potential use in helping with serious issues like tumors and cancer.  But it has anti-microbial effects that can make it helpful for fighting germs and supporting the immune system.

8. Geranium for skin conditions

Geranium is useful for soothing certain skin conditions and works as an antifungal, making it an excellent choice to combat several types of fungal infections. This oil also serves as a good tick repellant.

9. Ginger for pain and upset tummy

Ginger can be used to help relieve certain types of pain, such as pain associated with arthritis and hip dysplasia. Ginger also helps combat nausea and tummy upset.

10. Helichrysum for pain relief

This oil has anti-inflammatory and regenerative properties, making it a good choice for pain relief and healing certain wounds.

11. Lavender for calming and insect bites

True Lavender oil has terrific calming effects. It can help ease an anxious dog during stressful events like a car ride or a thunderstorm.

Lavender may also help with certain skin irritations like minor cuts, insect bites, and bruises

12. Marjoram for skin infections

Marjoram has anti-bacterial properties, making it a good choice for certain skin infections. It also has calming qualities and can be useful as a muscle relaxant.  Marjoram also helps repel insects.

13. Niaouli as an antiseptic

When used as an antiseptic, this oil can help with certain skin infections caused by things like bacteria and allergies. It has a very poignant scent, though, so you may want to see how your pup reacts to it first.

14. Peppermint for nausea

This oil can help with acute pain, such as swelling from sprains and specific injuries. It is also helpful for nausea. But it is not recommended for small dogs and proper dilution is necessary.

15. Spearmint for stomach issues

Spearmint can help with stomach issues like diarrhea and help soothe nausea. 

16. Sweet Orange for repelling fleas 

This oil has various benefits, including calming anxiety, boosting appetite, and repelling fleas. It also works as a deodorizer. You can use this oil to whip up a homemade doggy flea shampoo for your pup. 

17. Thyme

Thyme has a host of useful properties. This includes using it as an anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal oil.

However, there are many different variations of this oil, and only one is safe and beneficial for pups. It's Thyme ct. Linalool

If you are unsure of the type of Thyme oil that you have, check with your vet before using it.

18. Valerian for anxiety

Valerian helps calm nerves and soothe pups suffering from anxiety. It is useful for dogs who are dealing with issues like separation anxiety.

Lavender essential oilLavender Essential Oil

what essential oils are bad for dogs

While there are many essential oils deemed safe for pups, there are also quite a few that you should never use with dogs.

While this is by no means an exhaustive list, it can give you a head start on what is a no-no for your canine companion. But ALWAYS check with your holistic vet!

Steer clear of using these oils with your pup:

  • Anise
  • Birch
  • Bitter Almond
  • Calamus
  • Camphor
  • Clove
  • Garlic
  • Horseradish
  • Juniper
  • Mugwort
  • Mustard
  • Oregano
  • Pennyroyal
  • Red or White Thyme
  • Rue
  • Sassafras
  • Tea Tree
  • Terebinth
  • Wintergreen
  • Wormwood
  • Yarrow

Basic Guidelines when using essential oils for your dog

  • Do not use on puppies under 16 weeks old or pregnant dogs.
  • Keep away from your pet’s eyes, nose, inside of his ears, and genitals. 
  • Use in moderation and be sure to dilute the essential oil before using with your dog, whether with carrier oils, or a diffuser.
  • Be aware of how your dog reacts to the oils. Pay close attention to before and after effects on your dog and immediately discontinue use if you notice adverse reactions.
  • Always use a carrier oil or dilute in shampoo when applying to your dog's body. Rub the oil/carrier oil in your hands first and apply where needed.
  • Do not add essential oils to your pet's food or water without first discussing it with a holistic vet.
  • Never use adult human doses for pets

Tips for Using Essential Oils with Dogs

When you purchase essential oils, pay attention to the price and where you buy them. Supermarkets and health food stores are not always the best place to get the highest-quality oils.

Look for the words “100% pure essential oil” on the label as a starter, and expect to pay a higher price for these oils.

If the store has all of their oils priced the same, this should be a red flag, since several essential oils are more expensive than others because they are harder to extract.

Even though many oils are considered safe for dogs, it is still vital to check with your holistic vet before using any type of home treatment with your pup.

In several cases, dogs should not use essential oils.

For example, dogs with certain medical conditions, that are pregnant, or taking other medications, could experience serious risks from using essential oils.

Dogs should not ingest essential oils.

If your pup swallows any essential oil, call your vet or poison control and closely monitor your pup.

Even just a couple of drops of certain oils can be too much if misused. Plus, it’s essential to remember that your dog’s sense of smell is a lot keener than yours, so he might find certain scents too harsh.

Essential oils are very potent, which is why they often need to be diluted before use. Your holistic vet can recommend favorable carrier oils that you can use to dilute the essential oils and the proper dosage for different types of oils.

Overall, many essential oils can provide wonderful benefits for your dog, but it is vital to use them correctly and safely.

It’s always advised to talk with a holistic vet first, and of course, see how your dog reacts to any oil that you use with him.

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