Is Lavender Oil Safe for Dogs?

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Author Name: Beth Rush
Date: Monday February 5, 2024

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Lavender oil has always been a popular essential oil for aromatherapy. People have used it for centuries to treat various ailments, including depression, stress and anxiety. In addition to its many medical uses, lavender can also be useful as a relaxing sleep aid.

Yet, many people wonder whether lavender oil is safe for dogs. Unfortunately, it’s not always safe — it can even be toxic!

Here’s everything you need to know about using lavender oil for your pup, including tips on getting high-quality lavender oil that’s safe for your dog.

What Is Lavender Oil?

Lavender oil is a natural, essential oil that comes from Lavender flowers. It has a long history of medicinal use, often used to soothe stress, relax muscles and improve sleep. 

Aromatherapists consider it one of the most versatile oils because it has a sweet, warm scent that can be calming or energizing — depending on how much you’re using. You can even find it in various products, from bath salts to massage oils.

Lavender oil is typically extracted from lavender buds by steam distillation. The oil produced from these buds has a mild scent, but people may enhance it with other scents to create more complex blends for aromatherapy.

Is Lavender Oil Safe for Dogs?

It turns out that lavender oil is safe for dogs, but only in small quantities. While a small amount of lavender essential oil on your dog won’t harm them, you should still be careful with the amount and frequency of use.

Keep in mind that your dog should never ingest lavender oil as it can cause vomiting or diarrhea. Lavender oil can be toxic to dogs when consumed in large amounts. This is because essential oils are high in potency and can create complications for your four-legged companion.

If you decide to use lavender oil, you should always dilute it and apply it in small amounts.

In general, your vet may not recommend using lavender oil on your pet. If that is the case, safer alternatives are always available. Some examples include chamomile oil for anxiety or coconut oil for skin care.

What Are the Benefits of Lavender Oil for Dogs?

When used safely, lavender oil can have tremendous therapeutic benefits for dogs. Here are some of the ways it can help:

  • Sedative: Lavender oil can be great for calming anxious or hyperactive dogs.
  • Antibacterial and antifungal: Lavender oil has antibacterial and antifungal properties — making it effective against common bacterial and skin infections.
  • Repellent: Whether you have fleas in your home or mosquitos are a problem in your area, lavender oil can make great use as a natural insect repellent. You can apply it to your dog’s fur or add it to their shampoo to keep them safe from pesky pets.

Lavender oil can also benefit your dog by easing joint pain, inflammation, and swelling and helping with pain management. It has many uses for managing various conditions in your dog’s life. Therefore, it’s worth learning how to apply it properly.

How To Apply Lavender Oil to Your Dog Safely

Though lavender oil is a natural remedy for many ailments, using it on dogs can be tricky. Before using it on your dog, ensure they’re not allergic or sensitive to it.

If you’re unsure of their reaction, try mixing a small amount of diluted lavender oil with coconut or olive oil. Then rub it into the skin and wait a day to see how your dog reacts. Keep an eye out for symptoms like itching, redness, swelling or excessive shedding.

If you see no reaction, you can contact your veterinarian to learn more about the right amount to give your pet and how much to dilute it. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution, as the amount will depend on their size, age and health.

Yet once you dilute it properly, you can apply it directly to their skin or allow them to get a couple of sniffs of it. You can also use it safely by adding diluted drops to their collar or bandana. Additionally, lavender oil can be great to add to their bed to use as aromatherapy.

How To Choose the Right Lavender Oil

Be sure that when you’re ready to add lavender oil to your dog’s health care routine, you must choose a high-quality type and one from reputable sources. Otherwise, you might end up with an oil containing contaminants and other additives that can cause adverse effects.

Here are some things to look for when choosing the perfect lavender oil:

  • Labels that say Lavandula — the Latin name for lavender.
  • The bottle contains a lot number.
  • It comes in a blue or amber color bottle.
  • The price doesn’t seem too low, as cheap lavender oil products can cause adverse effects.

Consider consulting with an aromatherapist or holistic practitioner to give you recommendations on which brands to use.

Enjoy the Benefits of Lavender Oil for Dogs

Though lavender oil is safe for dogs, it’s important to use it responsibly and in moderation. It also helps to ask questions when you have concerns about whether your dog is sensitive to lavender oil. Therefore, you should always consult your veterinarian before applying any essential oils.

Now that you know these safety measures, give it a try and see how it will help your dog.

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