Aromatherapy and Dogs in the Shelter Environment
The benefits of Essential Oils with Dogs in a Shelter
I’ve been working in animal welfare for well over a year now and I have been granted the opportunity to oversee scent day. Scent day is a new program in the making where Essential oils are used in dog kennels to provide not only comfort, but enrichment for their emotional and mental stability. This is used most commonly by spraying diluted oils (mostly Lavender) on wash clothes and put on their beds. Within minutes, you can hear the difference in the rooms. The high energy dogs seem to settle, and the more nervous canines settle down and can relax.
The therapeutic properties seem to be very much the same in canines as in humans, but precautions still must be made to ensure safety for everyone.
In one study, several dogs were exposed to a handful of diffused oils, such as Lavender and Chamomile and were noted to be more restful and quiet. Other oils such as Rosemary made them more alert and loud which is an unwanted behavior to some adopters. While noticing this myself as I use Lavender, the calming benefits are outstanding and, in my opinion, a better option to pharmaceutical drugs to promote relaxation and ease nervousness in canines in a shelter environment.
Lynne graham, Deborah L. Wells
2004 Elsevier B.V. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved
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