Essential Oils & Aromatherapy

NAHA Certified Professional Aromatherapist

What You Should Know When Using Essential Oils for Dogs


Essential oils are a wonderful tool to support your dog’s health naturally. Consult with a holistic vet or use another good resource to find the perfect oils for your dog to support his or her vitality, overall health, skin, muscles and bones, digestive system, respiratory system, and emotional wellness.

This article covers some general safety tips when using essential oils for dogs.

Use Only 100% Pure Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils

The quality of an essential oil greatly impacts how safe it is to use and also how effective it will be. You will see the greatest results when using 100% pure therapeutic grade essential oils. Please read my article about how to pick a high quality essential oil at

Dilute Essential Oils According to Your Dog’s Size

Dogs tolerate essential oils generally well but they vary greatly in size. Use small amounts of essential oil and dilute with fractionated coconut oil or other carrier oil according to your dogs weight.  For example, if you would use 1 drop for an adult person (or comparably a 90 pound or bigger dog) you would use 4 drops of fractionated coconut oil and add 1 drop of essential oil for a 25 pound dog. Mix the fractionated coconut oil with the essential oil, then of that mixture just use 1 drop on the 25 pound dog.  Tip: Prepare your diluted oil in a glass bottle. For instance add 60 drops of fractionated coconut oil and add 15 drops of an essential oil, then just use one drop of that mixture on your 25 pound dog. Always blend your oils according to your dog’s weight. Dilute even more for toy breeds, old dogs, and skin sensitive dogs. Use very cautiously with puppies under 10 weeks of age, old dogs and pregnant dogs.

Listen to Your Dog

Dogs usually love essential oils. They often perk up as soon as you open an essential oil bottle.  When first introducing a new essential oil to your dog, let your dog sniff the essential oil from your hands first. If your dog starts drooling, whining or runs away use another oil that has similar properties and your dog reacts positively to. There are many essential oils that have similar chemical compositions and can achieve the same results. Choose an essential oil your dog likes.

Areas to Avoid

Certain body parts should be avoided as an essential oil could cause irritation. Keep essential oils away from eyes, nose, anal area, and genital areas. If you accidentally get some essential oil on a sensitive area, flush with milk.

Essential Oils You Should NOT Use Daily

Best results with essential oils are achieved when incorporated into a daily routine but there are certain essential oils that should not be used daily. Essential oils you should only use occasionally are Wintergreen, Thyme, Clove, Cassia, Camphor, and Oregano.
Melaleuca Essential Oil (also commonly known as Tea Tree Essential Oil) has Phenolic compounds that can be more difficult for a dog’s body to process. The oral toxic dose of phenol in dogs is about 0.22 grams per pound of body weight. 4 drops of Melaleuca are equivalent to about 0.22 grams. So Melaleuca can be toxic but only in high doses. Practice care and always dilute when using Melaleuca.

What to Consider When Starting to Use Essential Oils

Essential oils support the body in ridding it of toxins. Keep in mind, as we do with humans, that if a dog is toxic from medications or has not been on a natural raw food diet then it is best to use less essential oil at first. As with humans, the essential oils will support the body in shedding out toxins. When too many toxins are shed out too quickly it might make your dog not feel well.

As with everything in life, use good common sense, pick the highest quality essential oils and consult with a person who has experience with using essential oils to get the best results incorporating them into your dog’s care. Stay tuned for my next article covering which specific oils you may want to consider using, what effects they will have on your dog,  and how to best apply them.

Contact me if you have any questions.


As a NAHA Certified Professional Aromatherapist®, Scarlet Strapko offers guidance and education, identifying the best single essential oils, essential oil blends, and custom creates personalized essential oil products, supporting YOUR physical health, emotional wellbeing, and ability to effectively reduce stress. Learn how to best integrate essential oils and essential oil based products into your daily routines to experience sustained benefits.

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