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Updated on June 3, 2011

Healthy Dog ...

Essential Oils for Dogs ...


In the same way as they do with humans, essential oils work on both a physical and emotional level in dogs. Like humans, dogs have an olfactory system, which means that for physical ailments, application of oils through massage is effective, while for emotional problems, dogs can obtain the benefits through inhaling essential oils.

In the case of physical ailments, the essential oils are diluted into a cream or carrier oil base and massaged into the affected area. The essential oil molecules find their way into the body via the hair follicles and blood stream. In the case of emotional problems, inhalations are used and receptors are activated which help the body to relax or be stimulated, depending upon the requirement.


To make an effective dog shampoo, use a good quality shampoo base and add essential oils such as Lemongrass, Thyme, Cedarwood and Citronella. These will help deter fleas and parasites and leave your dog’s coat smelling divine.

Use approximately 30 drops of essential oil in total to 100ml of shampoo base.


For skin irritations of all kinds, bathe the affected area with Lavender water, then apply the soothing oil blend. Apply twice daily until the irritation heals.


Bathe the area first with Lavender water, and then apply twice daily.

6 drops of Lavender

2 drops of Neroli

3 drops of Chamomile

30m of carrier oil


To bathe an area affected by scratches and battle wounds, use a combination of Thyme and Tea Tree oils diluted in water. The Thyme gives a more intense ‘anti-everything’ benefit. Because they are natural antibiotics and disinfectants, the essential oils help to clean the wound – and as with cats, if the dog licks it’s wounds afterwards it won’t harm them.

The bathing is an important part of assisting the healing, as it is difficult to cover a wound with a dressing. Once the affected area is clean Lavender oil can be applied neat to aid healing.


If your dog has an infection of any kind, think about treating the bedding where they sleep. It is as easy as adding 10 drops of Eucalyptus oil to 1 litre of warm water, giving the bedding a good scrub and soak, then allowing it to hand out to dry. Another method is to give the dog’s bedding and sleeping area a good daily spray of an anti-bacterial/anti-viral spray.

50 drops of Tea Tree oil

20 drops of Eucalyptus oil

20 drops of Thyme

90 drops of essential oil stabilizer

100 ml spray bottle of water


Arthritis in the back legs and hips can trouble many dogs as they age. As with humans, taking essential fatty acids internally can also help dogs, as they work as an anti-inflammatory and help relieve arthritic symptoms. Dogs enjoy the taste of fish oil capsules and they are easily added into their meals.

Analgesic essential oils such as Eucalyptus, Rosemary and Ginger, and anti-inflammatory oils such as Lavender and Chamomile will give relief.

Massage into the affected area once or twice daily.

3 drops of Rosemary

2 drops of Lavender

2 drops of Eucalyptus

4 drops of Chamomile

4 drops of Ginger

30ml of carrier oil


Dogs can suffer from coughs and colds just like humans do. The best essential oils to treat them are Cajeput, Tea Tree and Eucalyptus. Add 2 drops of each essential oil to 30ml of vegetable oil and massage over the dog’s chest, two or three times per day. If you are concerned about the dog having an oily coat, use these same oils but make a spritzer instead.

2 drops of Cajeput

2 drops of Tea Tree

2 drops of Eucalyptus

30ml of vegetable carrier oil


Fleas can cause a great deal of grief for dogs when it comes to skin irritations. When making a flea collar for dogs you can add the oil blend to their brush and give their coat a good brushing. This can be done every day if the fleas are particularly bad

2 drops of Tea Tree

3 drops of Citronella

2 drops of Thyme

3 drops of Lavender

1 Garlic capsule

This blend can be rubbed into a leather or fabric collar as frequently as needed. Adding a garlic capsule to the dog’s food every day will also help to keep fleas at bay.


Essential oils can easily be used at home and are of great benefit to both animals and the humans who love them.



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