Maybe you’ve already heard about Integrated Pest Management (aka IPM), or maybe it’s an entirely new concept to you—either way, we’re going to help you better understand how exactly IPM can benefit you, your family, and pets. So what’s the deal with this newer, supposedly smarter approach to pest control? We have your answers below.
There are countless definitions floating around the internet, but this info from the University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources seems to get it just right:
Integrated pest management, or IPM, is a process you can use to solve pest problems while minimizing risks to people and the environment. IPM can be used to manage all kinds of pests anywhere—in urban, agricultural, and wildland, or natural areas. IPM is an ecosystem-based strategy that focuses on long-term prevention of pests or their damage
After years of saturating our crops, lawns, homes, families, and pets with notoriously harmful chemicals, we now know there are safer, more effective ways to control pests, prevent their damage, and avoid bites. In fact, many traditional approaches have proven unsustainable, affecting not only the health of our families and pets but also the health of our lawns, ultimately resulting in even larger, hardier pest populations around the home.
In short, Integrated Pest Management is about taking proactive steps to prevent or mitigate pests before they can become a serious issue. But don’t worry, even if you’re currently struggling with a heavy, ongoing bug problem, IPM is still an excellent option for you.
You may be wondering, “What exactly do you mean by “proactive steps?” It might sound technical, but don’t worry it’s quite simple. It essentially comes down to three main components: prevention, monitoring, and family-safe pest control maintenance. Read on for the specifics.
Here’s how to start incorporating Integrated Pest Management to protect your family, pets, home, and lawn from bugs, their bites and damage.
When it comes to personal pest prevention, your focus will be on making your lawn and home unappetizing and inaccessible to insects and other damaging pests. Arguably the most important step is to remove potential hideouts, food, and water sources. Below are some guidelines to get you started.
- Clutter is your enemy—any unnecessary clutter both indoors and in your lawn needs to go, and fast. Whether it’s stacks of old newspapers, piles of laundry, or general messiness inside your home, or unused equipment, brush, or tall grass in your lawn, pests will use these spaces to hide and thrive.
- Lawn maintenance is vital. Regularly mow, weed-eat, trim shrubbery and hedges to remove potential breeding and hiding spots.
- Nothing attracts bugs like excess moisture, especially outdoors. If your home or lawn readily provides access to standing water, such as via poor drainage, clogged gutters, poorly maintained bird baths or pools, leaky hoses, faucets, drink spills, or water-filled dishes in the sink, you’re going to struggle with constant pest problems. Remove or address these water sources ASAP.
- It’s all about cleanliness. If your flooring, sinks, or countertops regularly offer crumbs and food residues, we promise you the bugs will come. It’s crucial to keep these spaces and all food storage areas free of edible debris. For best results, keep all your food items sealed in tightly closed containers or baggies. For similar reasons, take out your trash and recycling often and periodically clean the bins to keep them clear of potential food sources.
- Block their entry. Bugs and other pests enter our homes via cracks or holes in foundations, walling, screens, doorways, and windows. Do a thorough check both inside and outside your home looking for potential entrances. Repair or replace any broken screens or seals you notice, and use caulk or another appropriate material to fill any cracks or holes you discover, too. Similarly, many bugs such as ticks are introduced into our lawns via wildlife like deer. In these instances, installing fencing or other wildlife deterrents is strongly recommended.
- Team up with nature and install bug-repelling plants inside or outside your home to naturally limit bug populations. Click here to learn more.
- Consider replacing standard mercury vapor lights outside doors and windows with halogen lights. This will really help cut down on those nightly flying insects and the additional predatory pests they attract.
Periodically checking your home, lawn, and pets for bug problems is an important element of Integrated Pest Management, and can save you and your family tons of pain and money in the long run. This will allow you to gauge the extent of your pest issue as well as help identify the exact pest you’re dealing with, which will ultimately determine your pest control approach.
If you need help diagnosing a pest issue or unknown bug bites, give us a call at 800-842-1464 or chat us on our website.
PEST CONTROL MAINTENANCE
Prevention is always the best form of pest control, which is why periodically treating your lawn, home, and pets with family-safe pest control products can save you tons of time, money, and headache. It’s simple: the longer a bug problem persists, the more difficult and costly it becomes.
Old school lawn chemicals are scary, dangerous things. They not only wreck the natural ecosystems that keep your lawn healthy, including pollinators like bees and butterflies, but their toxic ingredients almost always find their way into the home. And when you compromise the health of your lawn with chemical-based pesticides, you’re only making it more vulnerable in the long run to pests now immune to traditional approaches.
Instead, spray your entire lawn and all shrubbery with family and pet-safe PCO Choice monthly to help kill and repel bugs in all life stages. For warmer regions, this should be done monthly until the temperatures consistently drop below freezing for more than a few weeks. If you live in a colder climate, start spraying monthly in late February and then taper off in November as winter sets in.
Unlike the gross, toxic sprays, there’s no downtime required with PCO Choice, meaning you and your pets can safely enjoy your yard immediately after application.
For additional pest protection, spread single-ingredient Cedar Granules throughout your lawn and garden, especially along your home’s foundation and the areas with the most pest traffic.
The next time you reach for a bottle of bug spray to kill pests indoors, consider the ramifications. Old school, chemical-based bug sprays have been linked with a laundry list of side effects, including brain damage in children, canine cancers, and infertility, dementia, and several cancers in adults.
Family-safe Cedarcide Original is a non-toxic insecticide that won’t expose your family or pets to harmful chemicals, or pollute your home’s air quality. Whenever you see unwelcome bugs inside your home, deliver a quick spray for instant results. To protect your family and pets from bug bites, apply before outdoor activities in potentially bug-infested areas.
To help prevent pests from moving indoors in the first place, spray common trouble spots and known entry points weekly with Cedarcide Original.
The warm weather’s here and so are the fleas and ticks. Here are 3 tips to protect you, your pets, family, and your home from these troublesome pests.
1. Protect You & Your Pets
In addition to preventing harmful bites, regularly applying non-toxic repellents to you and your fur babies will keep fleas and ticks from hitching a ride into your yard and home.
2. Keep Fleas & Ticks Out of Your Yard
If there are fleas and ticks in your lawn, your family or pets are going to get bitten. Monthly pet-safe lawn treatments are essential to controlling unwanted bug populations.
3. Safeguard Your Home
Periodically treating pet bedding, kennels, and other pet spaces with a naturally sourced insecticide will help keep your home a flea and tick-free space.
Did you know approximately 500,000 pets are affected by fires each year, and that 1,000 of those fires are actually caused by pets?
To help pet parents prevent and plan for such emergencies, here are 6 essential fire safety tips for pets:
Do Away with Open Flames
Around pets, open flames are just accidents waiting to happen. All it takes is a wagging tail or curious kitty to start a fire.To put it simply: Never leave a lit candle or fireplace unattended around your pet. Fireless alternatives are even better.
To put it simply: Never leave a lit candle or fireplace unattended around your pet. Fireless alternatives are even better.
Use Pet Alert Window Stickers
Pet alert window decals help first responders rescue your pets in the event of an emergency, especially if you’re not at home when one occurs.
Ideally, stickers should be placed at both front and back entrances. To save rescuers time, include critical info like the type and number of pets in your home. For free pet alert stickers, visit the ASPCA website.
Upgrade Your Smoke Alarm
Because pets can’t escape a fire on their own, consider installing monitored smoke detectors.
These detectors work by notifying either you or a local monitoring center at the first sign of trouble, increasing the chances your pet will be successfully rescued.
Address Gas Stoves
According to the National Fire Protection Association, stovetops are the leading cause of fires caused by pets.
Nip this hazard in the bud by using stove knob covers or simply removing the knobs while you’re not at home.
Secure Wires and Cords
Not only can loose wires and cords electrocute your pet, they can also start a fire.
Especially if your pet is prone to chewing, it’s essential to keep electrical wires out of reach of curious cats and dogs. If that’s not possible, cable covers will also do the trick.
Have an Escape Plan
Having a pet-friendly escape plan and running fire drills that include your cat or dog is vital to pet fire safety.
Plan out all possible escape routes and how to retrieve your pet regardless of where a fire might start in your home. Keeping leashes near likely exits and having a reliable recall command is also important.
The ugly truth is that tick season is never over.
In most regions, these scary pests can survive all winter long, even in freezing conditions.
Don’t worry, we have your back. Here are 3 tips to prevent potentially life-altering bites and keep ticks away from you and your pets through fall and winter.
Protect Yourself and Pets
Apply Cedarcide Original to you and your pets before walks, hikes, dog park visits, and other outdoor activities to prevent bites.
Need deep woods protection? Try Extra Strength Tickshield instead.
Get a Tick-Free Lawn
Spray your entire yard, shrubbery, and bases of trees with PCO Choice monthly to kill and repel ticks. For larger tick populations, spray twice, two weeks apart, and then monthly after that.
Because PCO is both family and pet safe, you can start enjoying your yard immediately after application.
Check for Ticks
Ticks removed within 36 hours rarely cause disease or infection. After outdoor activities, get in the habit of checking yourself, children, and pets for ticks as soon as possible (ticks are about 2/3 of an inch, brown or red).
DEET is arguably the most popular bug repellent in the world. Each year, millions of Americans spray it directly on their skin before camping, hiking, and cookouts to repel biting insects like mosquitoes. While DEET has one of the safer reputations among synthetic insecticides, it’s still an artificial chemical, and something we suggest thinking twice about before using around yourself, your family and pets. Here are 7 scary details to consider before you reach for another bottle of DEET-based bug spray.
While some types of mosquitoes are known to have a genetic resistance to DEET-based repellents, it seems now other mosquitoes are developing an immunity, too.
A study examining the host-seeking behavior of mosquitoes found that three hours after an initial exposure some mosquitoes displayed insensitivity to the repellent. Researchers believe this decreased response to DEET after previous exposure indicates that individual mosquitoes can adapt an immunity against the repellent that’s based on something similar to a learned behavior rather than solely genetics.
Although infrequent, potentially fatal seizures have been linked with DEET use. In 1998, The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) pointed to up to 46 cases of possible DEET-related seizures, including, sadly, 4 deaths.
The agency noted “it does appear that some cases are likely related to DEET toxicity,” and also suggested that more seizure cases are probably linked to the repellent but that “physicians may fail to check for history of DEET use or fail to report cases of seizure subsequent to DEET use.”
Did you know DEET can actually strengthen the toxicity of other common synthetic pesticides?
Carbamates, a toxic family of insecticides often used in conjunction with DEET, is one such example. One of the studies that looked at DEET’s toxic interaction with carbamate insecticides concluded, “These findings question the safety of DEET, particularly in combination with other chemicals, and they highlight the importance of a multidisciplinary approach to the development of safer insect repellents for use in public health.”
It was long believed that DEET simply had an olfactory effect on biting insects like mosquitoes, meaning it repelled them simply by smell. More recent studies, however, have discovered that while DEET does repel by scent, it also deters pests through neurological means.
One such study states “We’ve found that DEET is not simply a behavior-modifying chemical but also inhibits the activity of a key central nervous system enzyme, acetycholinesterase, in both insects and mammals”. Commenting on similar findings, researchers of another study concluded, “These findings indicate that DEET has neurological effects on insects in addition to known olfactory effects, and that its toxicity is strengthened in combination with other insecticides.”
If you knew your bug spray could melt plastic, would you still put it on your skin?
In addition to repelling bugs, you might be surprised to learn DEET is a rather powerful solvent, especially when it comes to synthetic materials like plastic. This is especially relevant to outdoor enthusiasts like hikers and campers, as DEET is known to destroy items like camping gear, plastic bottles, sportswear, and more.
The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center states that pets exposed to DEET products can experience “significant clinical” side effects. These health complications include skin irritation, eye damage, and respiratory issues, including airway inflammation and difficulty breathing. Gastrointestinal distress and nervous system problems are also linked to DEET exposure, such as ataxia, disorientation, and seizures.
The Pesticide Information Project of Cooperative Extension Offices of Cornell University reports that in the late ‘80s Everglades National Park employees were studied to help determine the possible health consequences associated with prolonged DEET exposure.
It was discovered that those who used DEET more frequently were more likely to suffer negative side effects, including but not limited to insomnia, mood disturbances, impaired cognitive function, nausea, headaches, dizziness, and more.
As responsible pet parents, we try to give our animals the best lives possible. We feed them awesome food, we entertain them with outdoor activities, treats and toys, and we protect them from harmful annoyances like fleas and ticks. But, there’s one arena that many pet parents don’t consider when it comes to their pet care routine and it’s arguably the most impactful: Household chemicals.
Many common items we consider safe—from air fresheners to plastic pet toys—actually contain toxins that can poison our cats and dogs, resulting in illness, sometimes even death. Thankfully, by being just a little more conscious, we can help make our pet’s environments safer and much less toxic. Here are 5 ways to reduce your pet’s exposure to harmful chemicals.
Artificial fragrances—air fresheners, candles and other synthetically scented products—often contain chemicals that are unsafe for your pets, including heavy metals, phthalates, and VOCs (volatile organic compounds) like ethanol and formaldehyde.
Devastating health effects associated with consistent and long term exposure to these chemicals include heart disease, respiratory problems, birth defects, reproductive complications, even cancer.
But how common are these chemicals? Sadly, very. In a first-of-its-kind study, the EWG (Environmental Working Group) published the Polluted Pets report in 2008 to give the public a better understanding of the chemicals affecting our pets’ health. Their research found that American pets are riddled with phthalates, among other toxic chemicals found in artificial fragrances. Specifically, they discovered that dogs were contaminated with traces of phthalates at levels up to 4.5 times higher than humans; cats were contaminated at levels higher than in any of the over 5,500 people tested by the CDC.
Indoor air pollution affects more than just our homes’ air quality, it impacts our pets’ health and lifespans, too. Many traditional household cleaners contain bleach, formaldehyde, ammonia, chlorine and other toxic ingredients and synthetic fragrances that fill our home with noxious contaminants. Through inhalation, incidental ingestion, and absorption from the floor, our pets are commonly exposed to these chemicals, and the risks can be dire: Cancer, anemia, organ damage and more have all been linked to these toxins.
To protect your pets from potentially harmful exposure, carefully read cleaner labels and consider switching to non-toxic alternatives the next time you go shopping.
Pills, collars, sprays—in whatever form, traditional flea and tick solutions can pose a significant health risk to not only your pets, but also you and your family. Common ingredients in these products, such as organophosphates, carbamates, and pyrethroids, have been linked with countless health complications in both animals and humans. Organ damage, seizures, cancer, nervous system damage, and death in pets have all been associated with toxic flea and tick repellents.
Frighteningly, it’s been shown that synthetic flea and tick products can persist on our pets’ fur for weeks after initial application. Research has revealed that concentrations of these remaining pesticide residues pose a risk of cancer and neurological damage to children “up to 1,000 times higher than the EPA’s acceptable levels.”
To limit your pet and family’s exposure to these potentially life altering ingredients, consider switching from conventional flea and tick prevention products to non-toxic solutions without harsh chemicals.
We mentioned above that a family of toxic chemicals called phthalates are typically present in artificial fragrances. Another common use for Phthalates is to help make plastic products more flexible. Unfortunately, this includes our pets’ toys.
Given that these items all but live in our pet’s mouths, the idea that they contain possibly life changing chemicals is just a little more than unsettling. (If you recall, the aforementioned Polluted Pets Report study found that dogs were contaminated with phthalates at levels up to 4.5 times higher than humans, and cats were contaminated at levels higher than in any of the humans the CDC tested.)
In addition to limiting household fragrances to natural sources, avoiding plastic pet toys is essential to protecting your cat or dog from the effects of phthalate poisoning.
Traditional, chemical-based lawn care products present a unique danger to your pet’s overall health. Think about it: They spend considerable time outside, playing and lying in your lawn, and sometimes even eating its grass. Given the harmful chemicals hidden in many fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides, sometimes a simple paw-lick is all it takes to negatively impact their health.
To start, conventional fertilizers often contain a noxious mix of phosphorus, nitrogen and other chemicals that at the right dose can be outfight fatal to pets, especially if ingested. The more pressing threat, however, is traditional outdoor pesticides. Alarmingly, several types of pet cancers are strongly linked with these products. One study, for example, found that dogs exposed to pesticides commonly used by lawn care services had a 70% higher risk of fatal canine malignant lymphoma.
Research published in the journal Science of the Total Environment discovered that “exposure to herbicide-treated lawns has been associated with significantly higher bladder cancer risk in dogs.” Another scary chemical to look out for is allethrin. This pesticide is found in many outdoor products used to treat flying pests like mosquitoes, and it’s been linked with increased risk of liver cancer in dogs. Considering cats absorb more chemicals than dogs due to their grooming habits and more delicate digestive systems, cat parents need to be extra careful around allethrin as well.
From social media to blogs to your local supermarket, it seems like essential oils are everywhere these days. Like many you might be wondering: What even are essential oils, and how can I use them? As natural lifestyle advocates and big fans of these organic oils, we’d like to help clear up the confusion. Below you’ll find 5 of the most frequently asked questions regarding essential oils. Enjoy!
What Are Essential Oils?
Essential oils are simply highly concentrated organic compounds extracted from the seeds, leaves, flowers, bark, roots or fruits of plants and trees. Essential oils are usually distilled via a steaming process which helps separate the desired botanical oils from the rest of the plant material. Essential oils can be over 75 times more potent than their source material (for example, it takes roughly 16 pounds of peppermint leaves to make a single ounce of peppermint essential oil!)
What Are they Used For?
The internet is full of misinformation and countless unsubstantiated health claims when it comes to essential oils. While they’ve been used for centuries to help relief health issues and support wellness, scientists have only somewhat recently started researching their potential health benefits, including:
From minor to major, essential oils have been shown to help alleviate various forms of pain. A study from Pain Research and Treatment looking into a variety of potential applications ranging from postoperative pain and chronic neck and back pain to cancer and labor-related pain “found a significant positive effect of aromatherapy in reducing pain,” especially when combined with traditional pain management approaches.
Reducing Stress and Anxiety
Relieving stress is one of the most popular essential oil uses and science appears to back up this benefit. A 2016 clinical trial involving the effects of rose water aromatherapy on dialysis patients showed anxiety levels were “reduced significantly in the treatment group compared with the control group.”
Another study looking at anxiety and depression in postpartum women discovered “positive findings with minimal risk for the use of aromatherapy as a complementary therapy in both anxiety and depression.” A 2014 study centered on quality of life in the elderly found similar results, concluding “depression, anxiety, and stress levels were significantly reduced…showing that aromatherapy can help to maintain the psychological health of community-dwelling older persons.”Boosting Energy Levels
It’s long been believed that aromatherapy and other essential oil applications have a naturally uplifting effect on energy levels. A study in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition looked at the effect of peppermint essential oil on young male athletes for this very reason, ultimately finding that the “results of the experiment support the effectiveness of peppermint essential oil on exercise performance…blood pressure and respiratory rate.”
Promoting Healthy Sleep
A 2014 University of Minnesota review evaluated 15 studies on the effects of essential oils on quality of sleep. Their search revealed the majority of these studies “suggested a positive effect of essential oils on sleep,” with lavender being the most frequently studied essential oil.
A more recent study published by the British Association of Critical Care Nurses investigated the impact of lavender essential oil on the sleep quality and anxiety levels of patients in a coronary intensive care unit. Their research concluded that “lavender essential oil increased quality of sleep and reduced anxiety” in these patients.
How Do I Apply Them?
Now that you understand what essential oils are as well as some of their benefits, you might be wondering: But how do I use them? While there are limitless ways to incorporate essential oils into your natural lifestyle, there are 3 main application methods: Aromatherapy, DIY mixtures, and topical.
We suggest starting with the first two and moving onto topical application only after you’ve done more research on essential oils and consulted a professional.
Aromatherapy is the most popular approach, and involves using a diffuser or simple inhalation to harness the beneficial aromas of essential oils.
Adding a few drops of your favorite essential oil to DIY mixtures like homemade soaps, cleaners, or natural air fresheners is a fun way to enjoy essential oils’ therapeutic qualities.
Because of their small molecule weight, essential oils are readily absorbed into the skin, making topical application an effective way to enjoy these organic oils. After proper dilution with a carrier oil, essential oil mixtures can be applied directly to the skin as a soothing lotion or balm.
Should I Consult a Doctor Before Using Essential Oils?
For many reasons—including possible contraindications with medicine, potential allergies, and underlying health issues—we strongly suggest consulting a physician before starting an essential oil regimen, especially with the elderly and children. Essential oils, while natural, are highly concentrated and misuse can cause irritation and other unwanted reactions.
Do I Need to Dilute Them?
Essential oils are much too concentrated to use undiluted. It’s a common misconception that diluting essential oils with a carrier oil or other DIY mixture will reduce their effectiveness, but that’s simply not true. In fact, carrier oils can increase efficacy and the aromatherapeutic effects of your chosen essential oil by preventing evaporation and premature absorption into the body. Failing to dilute essential oils before use can lead to severe skin irritation, rashes, or more serious health complications like respiratory issues.
The exact amounts will vary, but start by adding a few drops of your favorite essential oil to a carrier oil like almond, avocado or coconut oil, or to a mixture like a DIY soap or homemade natural cleaner. Start small and increase the amount of essential oil as needed—generally, aim for somewhere in the 1-4% strength range.
Can I Use Them on My Pets?
Yes and no. We suggest always consulting a vet before incorporating essential oils into your natural pet care routine, especially for cats. When used correctly, essential oils can offer a chemical-free alternative to help address inflammation, anxiety, and other health concerns. When used incorrectly, however, they can do more harm than good.
First, always dilute before use and never allow your pet to ingest essential oils. Second, know which ones to avoid, not all essential oils that are safe for people are safe for pets. In general, avoid using the following essential oils on or around your pet:
- Citrus oils (like lemon and orange)
- Ylang ylang
- Tea tree
- Sweet birch
Spring is here and summer is just around the corner—which means bugs and bug bites are becoming increasingly more common. Seasonal vacations, backyard partying, and outdoor fun like hiking and camping all expose you, your family and pets to potentially harmful pests like mosquitoes, ticks, chiggers, ants, and fleas. Here are 4 tips to help you and your pets enjoy the warm weather without having to worry about troublesome bug bites.
Beaches, road trips, and adventure travel can mean countless bug bites for you and your family. Using a non-toxic repellent like Cedarcide Original does more than prevent these potentially harmful bites, it also ensures you don’t bring any of those nasty bugs back home.
Dog parks, walks, and backyards are often littered with unseen fleas, mites, ticks, and mosquitoes—which can spread deadly heartworms and cause other potentially life-threatening complications. Applying a pet-safe bug repellent before these activities is essential to your dog or cat’s protection this spring and summer.
For deep woods activities like hiking and camping, avoiding tick and mosquito bites can be a serious health concern. For extended stays in known flea and tick infested areas, sometimes a little extra protection is necessary. That’s why we formulated our extra strength formula Tickshield—it has twice the active ingredient (cedarwood oil) and is perfect for outdoorsmen and animals over 20 lbs.
For optimal protection, apply before and after outdoor activities in tall grass to avoid bites and prevent accidentally bringing bugs back into your vehicle, home, or yard.
Enjoying time outside—from BBQs and warm nights on the porch, to long walks and camping—is one of the absolute best things about summer and spring. The pests that often show up to spoil these fun activities—like ants, mosquitoes, chiggers, fleas and ticks—are the absolute worst.
Applying a non-toxic repellent like Cedarcide Original to family and pets can make grilling out, pool parties, and other backyard activities bite-free. A monthly yard treatment like PCO Choice will control active bug populations and help repel additional pests from moving into your lawn and eventually your home.
Did you know traditional household air fresheners and scented candles can fill your home with harmful toxins, threatening the health of your family and pets? Cedarcide Pet+Bedding+Home is naturally sourced and free of synthetic fragrances and other harsh ingredients. Here are 5 ways to use our new deodorizer and air freshener alternative!
Pets and Pet Bedding
Face it: Our cute pups and their bedding don’t always smell so cute. Pet+Bedding+Home’s natural scents are a quick and easy way to combat canine odors between baths.
Alternative to Artificial Air Fresheners
Deodorize bathrooms, trashcans, hampers, and living areas without resorting to chemical-based air fresheners.
Gear and Sports Equipment
You know what’s worse than funky camping gear and sports equipment? Stinky, harmful chemicals. A few spritzes with Pet+Bedding+Home and you won’t have to worry about either.
Refresh Linens and Furniture
Harness the natural power of essential oils to keep furniture, blankets, and other linens smelling fresh every day. (For sensitive furnishings, test on a small area first.)
Deodorize Your Vehicle
Pet+Bedding+Home freshens without synthetic fragrances.Transform your car’s stuffy air by lightly spraying cloth seats and carpeting.
Over the last few decades, Essential oils have become a popular way to naturally improve physical health and mental wellbeing. Somewhat more recently, pet parents realised they could extend this same healing power to their dog babies as well. But not all oils that are safe for humans are safe for canines—so which oils are a good fit for your pup? The following are our 10 favorite essential oils for dogs. Enjoy!
A word of caution: Always consult a veterinarian before incorporating essential oils into your pet care routine. Specifically, ask if your chosen essential oil is safe for your pup, how the oil can benefit them, and what the best way to use the oil might be. Essential oils should always be diluted before use on or around pets. For useful essential oil recipes for dogs, click here. For additional essential oil safety tips for dogs, click here. We do not suggest using essential oils on or around cats unless first approved through a veterinarian
Because of its mild characteristics, frankincense essential oil is a great choice for pet parents new to essential oil use. Frankincense essential oil is said to increase blood flow, relieve nervousness and anxiety, boost immune system health, and ease pain associated with external ulcers. Many claim it also helps fight cancer by halting and/or reversing tumor growth.
As you might have guessed, cedarwood is our absolute favorite essential oil (after all, it’s the basis of nearly all our botanical solutions). Cedarwood essential oil smells awesome and it’s an effective natural alternative to chemical-based flea & tick products. Because cedarwood essential oil is antifungal, antiseptic and because it helps increase circulation, it’s also said to help relieve a long list of canine skin issues—from dandruff and mange, to hot spots and general dermatitis due by insect bites. Some claim it also helps ease kennel cough as well arthritis!
Helichrysum is one of the finest essential oils for canine pain relief. Gastrointestinal upset, cuts, bruises, aches, joint pain—all are said to be helped by this natural anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antibacterial and antifungal solution. Breathing problems due to allergies or build up of mucus in the lungs are also said to be helped by this flower-derived essential oil.
Lemongrass essential oil has become a staple here at the Cedarcide offices. In addition to adding it to our new Tickshield formula, we use it to naturally freshen the air, as an odor-fighter for our office pups, and for aromatherapy to keep our team alert, optimistic and feeling great! With a long history of uses—including natural pest control, topical pain relief, and to help with canine skin health—lemongrass is one of the most useful essential oils for chemical-free pet care.
Lavender is arguably the most popular essential oil among natural pet care enthusiasts. Prized above all for its soothing effects on anxiety, insomnia and hyperactivity, lavender essential oil can be an invaluable aid for calming your dog during car rides, vet visits, social events, and when left alone at home. In fact, a study from 2006 confirmed that lavender essential oil, when used in aromatherapy, helped alleviate travel-induced anxiety in canines. Cool, huh?
Reportedly antifungal, antiseptic, and antibacterial, Marjoram is an earthy essential oil used for pets primarily to prevent infection, soothe depression, and in some cases even aid in diabetes and liver complications.
Roman Chamomile essential oil is a known anti-inflammatory and pain reliever, making it especially popular among outdoor enthusiasts and their adventure pets. Muscle tightness, cramping, teething pain, and joint complications are all said to be helped by this powerful essential oil.
Peppermint is another essential oil praised for its soothing, pain-relieving effects. Its cooling, anti-inflammatory powers are renowned in the natural lifestyle community for helping improve discomfort associated with canine arthritis, hip dysplasia and other joint conditions. When used in conjunction with ginger, peppermint essential oil is also said to reduce symptoms associated with motion sickness in pups. As a bonus, it also boasts natural pest-control qualities.
Cardamom is a unique essential oil in that it helps with both digestion and respiratory problems. Pet parents have long given their pups relief from stomach aches, nausea, and gas using cardamom essential oil. Many also report that coughing and difficulty breathing are also improved through cardamom use.
Does your pup constantly suffer from allergies? Then niaouli essential oil might be just the natural remedy for you and your animal baby. As a powerful natural antihistamine and antibacterial Niaouli essential oil can combat both seasonal and skin allergies as well as secondary skin infections occurring as a result of allergy symptoms. Niaouli is often chosen as a safer alternative to tea tree oil, which can be harmful to some pets at higher doses.