Holistic Pet Blog - Debbie Reynolds, DVM
By: Debbie Reynolds, DVM
My initial reaction to natural bug repellents for dogs and cats was that I didn't think it would take off. I know people don't like putting chemicals on their pet, but I didn't think people would be committed enough to apply a spritz of essential oil to their pet every day or before they go outside.
Turns out, I was wrong. People DO want to go to that effort to avoid putting chemicals on their furry family members. As the trend shifts in humans - steering away from DEET and other chemicals - so it does in animals. It is even more important for animals as they groom and ingest what is on their fur.
The product that we use the most of is an essential oil made by AnimalEO called "Away". It has a light lemony scent and doesn't smell harsh in the least, it is quite fragrant. A spritz on the feet and belly as they go outdoors is enough to keep bugs off. There are other options available for natural bug repellents, but this is the one I know and trust. It is made by Melissa Shelton, DVM and it has been out there long enough that we know it works and we know it is safe.
Away essential oil is water based so it is not oily and contains Eucalyptus citriodora, Catnip (used in a lot of human applications as a bug repellent), Citronella, Lemon Tea Tree, and White Cypress.
Several unique ingredients in Away increase its ability to eliminate odors and repel insects. Eucalyptus citriodora (also called Lemon Eucalyptus) is an essential oil from Australia, which carries well known constituents that repel insects, including PMD (p-Menthane 3,8 diol). Catnip oil is also showing great interest in the world of insect repellents, however both essential oils carry properties that are rivaling DEET!
Essential oils do not last as long as the chemicals we have found to be so convenient. But, what price do we pay for that convenience? Many of my patients and clients come to me for alternatives to traditional medicines that were causing harm to their animal friend. It is a scary thought that we apply toxic chemicals in the name of convenience to our family member that often sleeps in the same bed with us! Natural protection is not perfect, but nothing out there really is. One of the benefits is that applying essential oils to your dogs actually makes them healthier and not many products can boast of that!
If you are a person dedicated to natural ectoparasite care for your fur baby, just establish your routine, tweak the dose according to the time of year and the bug load and don't give up. It will be worth it in the long run!
By: Debbie Reynolds, DVM
You can pretty much name off any breed and a list of diseases pops up in my brain. In veterinary school, we are taught to be aware of breed tendencies to be vigilant and watch for them. It is far better to be proactive than reactive, and that is what we want to help you with.
You might be surprised how prevalent cancer is in certain breeds. Dr. Steven Steinberg of VCA Veterinary Referral Associates has been collecting data on rates of cancer by breed at the Vet Cancer Registry and built the following table based on a database of confirmed cancer cases compared to the numbers of AKC registered dogs in that breed.
|Breed||Number AKC Registered||Number with Cancer||Percentage with Cancer|
I don't want you to feel too discouraged if you have one of these amazing breeds as a member of your family. I would love to introduce you to Sunshine in a Bottle (click to purchase) which is a very easy and affordable way to protect your pet.
Sunshine in a Bottle is an essential oil that contains Tangerine, Grapefruit, Frankincense, Copaiba and Orange, all blended especially for animals, with a multitude of health benefits - most importantly, anti-cancer and anti-tumoral. These citrus oils are high in limonene which is researched heavily for these benefits. Frankincense is also well known by researchers as being an anti-cancer powerhouse oil. Copaiba is a powerful anti-inflammatory oil in animals and most people are aware that inflammation in the body is the root of most diseases.
Not only does Sunshine in a Bottle greatly reduce the risk of cancer, but it has many other physical and emotional benefits. It may aid in fluid circulation, immune function and support, liver health, senility, obesity, detoxification, and with tumors, cysts, and lipomas.
I wish you could smell it because it even smells amazing! It is easy to apply by petting your dog or cat. Another simple way to use it is by diffusion. A wonderful side effect is that you can benefit from it, too!
Please comment below if you have questions!
By: Debbie Reynolds, DVM
Incredible just skirts the surface of what this all natural essential oil can do for your pet.
May I begin with a story?
One of the first patients that I used Open Air (click here to purchase) on was a senior aged corgi. Before I was introduced to holistic remedies for dogs, I tried all the traditional medications to help Corky with his COPD, but none ever really helped. We tried all of the medications that are recommended for this treatment. I felt terrible listening to Corky breathe and cough and I was not able to help him.
When I first started learning about holistic therapies, I immediately thought of him when I discovered Open Air. We got an essential oil diffuser (click here for a suggestion) and placed the essential oil in the diffuser while he slept. The next time I saw him, it was like I was looking at a different dog. One that was bright and alert, with pep in his step, and no wheezing or coughing.
The owner was so happy to help her baby without drugs and a very affordable and easy alternative to the traditional methods. As they say, "the proof is in the pudding", the proof was standing before our eyes on four little short legs.
Let me share with you what makes Open Air essential oil so incredible. This blend is created with animals in mind and specifically for them. The blend has some very powerful oils including: Tangerine, Spruce, Cinnamon, Copaiba, Eucalyptus radiata, Clove, Lemon, Marjoram and Rosemary.
There is a huge variety of applications for this oil. It can help your pet in so many ways.
6. Immune Stimulation.
7. Reduction of mucus.
9. Pain reduction.
10. Disinfects the air.
You should consider using this if your pet has problems with any of the following:
2. COPD (old dog lung disease)
3. Respiratory infection (upper or lower)
5. Kitten viruses
8. Pharyngitis (weak bark or meow)
9. Sinusitis (chronic nasal discharge)
It's easy. It's safe. It's effective.
By: Debbie Reynolds, DVM
If your pet hurts, you want to help. One of the most mainstream ways that pain is treated is by prescription drugs. These are nice for short term pain, but not for chronic, long term pain. The side effects can be devastating. These side effects include stomach ulcers, liver failure, poor immune system, and in some cases, death.
The number one reason I became an animal aromatherapist was to find a way to help animals that were in pain in such a way that wouldn't ultimately harm them. I had patients that were only a year old with hip pain from dysplasia. My own dog had surgery on his arm at 1 year old. I knew he could not take NSAIDs or prescription drugs for his whole life, or he would end up with terrible side effects from them.
That is when the research began. My favorite treatment is an essential oil called New Mobility (click to purchase). I became a believer as I watched my own dog and patient after patient respond to this essential oil as well as they did their drugs.
This essential oil is a combination of spruce, copaiba, lavender, marjoram, helichrysum, peppermint, balsam fir, lemongrass, frankinscense, basil and blue cypress. The combination of these oils results in an amazing product that treats inflammation, bone pain, muscle pain, strengthens tendons and ligaments, increases circulation and so much more! It even helps rebuild muscle!
You should give it a try. Really, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain!
It's true. Sedatives for thunderstorms, car rides, and generalized anxiety aren't necessary. There are options that do NOT involve any kind of prescription.
As a veterinarian and a certified animal aromatherapist, I dislike giving sedatives for thunderstorm phobia. Why? Because it doesn't decrease their fear and anxiety. It only sedates them. Wouldn't you rather have your anxiety addressed rather than just being sedated?
Our most preferred method of treating anxiety in an all natural way is an essential oil called Calm-a-Mile (click here to purchase). It has a combination of essential oils - german chamomile, roman chamomile, blue cypress, frankincense, clary sage, and ylang ylang. This unique blend is veterinary created to work especially well for your pet - cat, dog, bird, horse, or exotics!
Meet Judah, a 5 year old rescued mix breed dog. Isn't he cute?
He is adorable, but he does have some issues with anxiety. Especially when his family leaves for work and school in the mornings and during storms. He usually starts by pacing and panting. His family recognizes the onset of his anxiety by excessive panting, All that Judah needs is a spritz of calm-a-mile on his chest area in extreme anxiety situations, or a drop of it on his sniff-it on his collar in less extreme scenarios. Within minutes, the panting stops and you can see the relaxation set in.
You can use it three ways:
1. In a diluted form that you can pet onto your animal. I like to pet it onto the chest area so they can also benefit from inhalation, but any area will do. The good news is, if they lick it or ingest it, even better. They can benefit from ingestion as well.
2. In a non-diluted form applied directly to your pet's bedding or a sniff-it placed around your pet's collar. Click here to see a Sniff-It.
3. The non-diluted form can also be placed in an essential oil diffuser and diffused into the room while they sleep overnight or any time of the day.
Another reason that I love this option is because it is safe. No harmful side effects for your pet and there are no worries for any other pets or children who may be in contact with your anxious pet.