Essential oils can be a wonderful remedy for your dog's wounds and other skin irritations, but there are so many that it can be tough to choose the right one. Some essential oils can be harmful when used incorrectly. Keep a basic selection of oils on hand to use when you need them.
What Is Essential Oil?
Essential oils may not be oil at all. They are a beneficial essence distilled with water or steam from plants.. These essences aid plants in keeping away disease and insects, and help plants adapt to their environment. The "essential" component is distilled so it can be separated from the plant and bottled.
Obtain essential oils that are bottled in amber, cobalt or violet glass. Check the to be sure the label contains both the common and scientific name, as well as how it was extracted and the country of origin. Avoid buying lower quality oils, which cost less but are less effective.
Oils for Wounds
Choose an essential oil that fits your dog's need. Several are excellent for canine use on wounds, sores or skin irritations. Consult your veterinarian before using anything on open wounds or sores.
When your dog has insect bites or itchy skin, try yarrow. It can also be used to stop bleeding. Dab it on with a Q-tip or a cotton swab.
A gentle anti-inflammatory, German chamomile can help with skin irritations, allergic reactions or burns. Roman chamomile is anti-spasmodic, analgesic and calming. Use this form for muscle or teething pain.
This anti-fungal can be useful for ear infections as well as skin irritation. It also repels ticks.
Soothes and Heals
Lavender is a must-have essential oil, valuable as aromatherapy to calm and relax your dog in stressful situations and also to help heal burns, surface wounds that are not infected, bruises, scars, insect bites, hot spots and fungal infections. It is antiseptic and repels fleas. Lavender oil doesn't taste good, so applying it to your dog's skin deters him from licking it. The most gentle of the essential oils, it is best unadulterated, so purchase a good quality brand. Mix 1 part lavender oil to 1 part water.
Tea Tree Oil
A popular essence, tea tree oil can be dangerous for your dog if it isn't used correctly. Tea tree, or melaleuca, oil can be effective in healing wounds, but it should only be used well diluted in olive oil or another carrier at a rate of 2 to 3 drops to a teaspoon of oil.
Pure tea tree oil is toxic to dogs. If you apply it to the skin undiluted and your dog licks it, he can become very sick.
Tea tree oil should not be used on or around cats. It is toxic to them.
This effective skin remedy helps soothe irritation, insect bites, and bacterial, yeast and fungal infections. An alternative to tea tree oil is Niaouli oil, which has strong antibacterial and antihistamine properties but is not irritating.