During the past few weeks I have had an increasing number of migraine headaches. I don’t know if it is the fewer daylight hours, the drier weather, or if I am just eating too much chocolate, but they sure have been a pain. One of the remedies I use to feel better when a migraine comes around is lavender.
Lavender has natural soothing and calming proprieties that allow me to rest and get some sleep until the pain can pass. I have been using a lavender scented neck pillow and lavender butter that I picked up from a local lavender farm called Renaissance Lavender.
One of my favorite things about using lavender is that I don’t have to worry about it negatively affecting Luna. So yes, lavender is safe for dogs. In fact, lavender is not only NOT poisonous to dogs, but it also has some beneficial qualities.
Lavender is known to have a calming, grounding, and almost sedating affect as it acts on the central nervous system. This can be helpful if you have a dog who is particularly anxious or nervous during travel, thunderstorms, fireworks or any other stressful situation.
Lavender essential oil can be used for this calming effect. According to Wikipedia, lavender essential oil is made by distilling the flower spikes of certain species of lavender. Adding just a few drops to your dog’s collar or neck can help to soothe anxiety and nerves.
For this same effect, culinary lavender can also be incorporated into your dog’s food or baked in homemade dog treats
Lavender Shampoo can also be used to soothe your dog if he or she finds bath time stressful. Since soon after adopting Luna, we have used Burt’s Bees Calming Shampoo with lavender (affiliate link). We chose the lavender shampoo for its calming properties because bath time always seemed like the end of the world to Luna. I had no idea what other benefits lavender shampoo can have.
Lavender Shampoo can also enhance the shine and smoothness of your dog’s coat through its soothing properties. If you don’t have lavender shampoo for your dog, you can make your own by adding lavender essential oil to your existing shampoo.
Lavender essential oil can be used to soothe irritated skin and prevent possible infections. It is also a natural way to help allergies, burns, ulcers, and more. Lavender can provide relief from itching and can be used to help with wound healing and scarring.
Lavender may also be helpful in treating hot spots and other sores. A mist of diluted lavender essential oil can be applied to a hot spot. Lavender’s calming, healing, antibacterial, and pain killing properties help it clear up fast.
Lavender also proves to be a natural insect repellent. It’s scent repels fleas and ticks, but does not kill them.
You can find lavender spray or mist from Renaissance Lavender or make your own by diluting a few drops of lavender essential oil with water. Use the lavender spray on yourself, your dog, and your furniture to help repel fleas and ticks. You can also add lavender essential oil directly into your carpet shampoo.
A Few Words of Caution
While lavender and other essential oils are safe for use around dogs, they should not be used around cats. However, dogs can have negative or allergic reactions to lavender, so be sure to try lavender out in small amounts initially. Always keep a close eye on your dog to observe any negative reactions. It is also not recommended to use essential oils on pregnant or nursing dogs.
Dogs should not ingest lavender essential oil as it can cause liver or kidney damage.
Lavender essential oil should be heavily diluted before using with pets. It is recommended to not use any Lavender hybrid oils or blends containing Linalyl acetate as they are unsafe for pets. Look for Lavandula angustifolia only.