Do you need an extra tool to help with a frustrating health concern for your pet? Essential oils may just be what you’re looking for!
Essential oils can be a valuable addition to your natural pet care routine and can help with a number of common health problems.
It’s amazing to think they also contain powerful compounds which, when used incorrectly, can cause more harm than good. Which is why it’s crucial to do your research when beginning to use oils for your pet. When in doubt – ask your veterinarian and remember: less is more.
So if you have been curious about essential oils and haven’t known where to start, consider this your Beginner’s Guide to getting started!
Where to start
If you visit the essential oil section of your natural food store, you’ll find an overwhelming number of brands to choose from. And the prices can vary wildly making it difficult to know which one to choose.
How do you know which essential oils are good and which aren’t?
Is it worth the money to buy more expensive oils?
And what information should you look for on the label?
Start with the label!
When it comes to essential oils, you get what you pay for. Committing to paying a little extra generally buys you a higher quality oil.
Cheaper versions may be adulterated or contain synthetic elements. These may render their medicinal benefits useless.
Marketing hype and advertising can make it tricky to know what information is useful and what information is pure marketing spin.
Reading the label is a great place to start!
All essential oils used in aromatherapy should be extracted from a specified plant species, e.g. Lanandula angustifolia versus Lavandula x intermedia. This is one way to guarantee that the oils you purchase are unadulterated and pure. Each plant has different healing properties and you want to make sure you are getting the most effective oils possible. While both of the named species of lavender above can have therapeutic benefits, they may differ slightly in efficacy depending on the condition being treated. This is why you should always look for the species name on the bottle so you know exactly what species you are getting.
Look for a supplier who is dedicated to supplying essential oils to aromatherapy practitioners and who support public education. The more information you can find on the label to vouch for this reputation, the better chance of it being a higher quality product.
Ensure the essential oils you purchase are grown and cultivated in a way that is sustainable, ecological and takes advantage of the natural resources of a given area (versus growing plants unnaturally in greenhouses away from their native environment). Where a plant is grown and how it is processed is critical to the quality of the final product. The use of pesticides, soil conditions, rainfall amounts and variability in altitude are all things that can impact the efficacy of a given essential oil
Natural Dog Health Remedies offers the following guidelines to help you select high-quality essential oils for your dog:
- Look for essential oils that are bottled in amber, cobalt or violet glass bottles
- Look for important information on the label (or on the store’s website, brochure, etc.):
- Scientific name of the oil (e.g. Lavandula angustifolia) – So you know you are getting the right essential oil
- Common name of the oil (e.g. Lavender) – This is the name you will recognize
- Country of origin – A consumer would not be expected to know the difference between using oils from plants in one area of the world versus another; however, this is important information for an Aromatherapist. Having this information on the bottle indicates that the company is marketing to knowledgeable parties and professionals as well as general consumers.
- Method of cultivation (e.g. organic, cultivated, wild harvested, etc.) – Most essential oils sold in the USA are not certified as organic but some European brands are
- The words “100% pure essential oil” – A statement of purity is crucial! You should be informed if it is not 100% pure oil (i.e., is mixed with another type of oil)
The science of essential oils
Essential oils can be used for everything from anxiety to skin conditions. They’ve even proven effective for skin issues resistant to more traditional treatments.
Dr. Melissa Shelton explains how this works:
“The beauty of essential oils is plants change, and so every single distillation of essential oils is slightly different from its predecessor. This is a benefit we don’t receive from pharmaceutical drugs. Every batch of a medical drug must by law be identical to the batch that preceded it.
Plants, on the other hand, adapt and change with the tiniest variable in their environment, for example, a change in the water supply. So essential oils, created from ever-adapting plants, never reach a point where pathogens become resistant to them. They stay at least one step ahead – which makes them much smarter than anything we can create in a laboratory.”
Going deeper – it’s time to get Quantum
Are you ready to get your geek on? This part is going to get a little trippy but I promise it’s worth it.
The more we learn about the world of Quantum physics, the more we understand that energetically, everything is connected.
Different wavelengths of light produce a range of colours. Different wavelengths of sound produce different pitches. And the interaction of these energetic signatures can change and enhance each other. Physicists have known for decades.
If you think of your emotions as another type of wavelength it’s easy to see how joy and happiness can be considered higher energy states than sadness and shame.
Are you following so far? I warned you we were going to get a little geeky!
So, everything is energy. You’re energy. I’m energy. The building you’re reading this in is made up of compact parcels of energy known as matter. And all this energy is connected.
Which brings us back to the science of essential oils:
You see, when specific frequencies of plant matter, e.g. essential oils, interact with the biochemisty of our bodies, it can produce healing effects.
Essential oils have the ability to affect animals at the cellular level, deep in the matrix of the body’s energy. So they can have a positive impact on the deep tissue of the brain and immune system.
Essential oils are powerful because they work on the cognitive and emotional levels in addition to the physiological level. This means they have far reaching benefits that directly affects the way the body processes thoughts and feelings.