Essential oils are biologically active aromatic compounds derived from seeds, flowers, roots, shrubs, bushes and trees. Each essential oil has a number of different bioconstituents which makes it unique in its effects.  Essential oils can be used in a variety of ways including by diffusion, direct inhalation, topical application, and oral ingestion. Essential oils can be used safely in pets with proper education and understanding about best practices in the application of individual oils.

When selecting an essential oil, purity and standards in the manufacturing of the oil are of paramount importance. Because the industry is not regulated, many commercially available essential oils may be adulterated or mixed with synthetic extenders which adversely affect the therapeutic potential of the oil. Some extenders can also be toxic to pets.

Several VetVine specialists recently took to task to research essential oils and their possible benefit to wellness (for people and pets). We attended lectures on the use of essential oils in animals, interviewed various holistic veterinarians and experts in aromatherapy, explored the commercially available sources for essential oils, and then put them to use - both personally and in our own pets.

We have also presented some of the published evidence to support the benefits of lavender in alleviating stress and anxiety in animals.

In doing our research, we have been most impressed with Young Living essential oils due to their quality control. For personal use, the consensus is that they are a delight and support the sense of physical and emotional well-being.

It's been said that an animal will choose their oil and show a preference based on the biological effects their body desires or needs. Here are a few demonstrations and "testimonials":

"Chester" is 2 year old Border Collie/Anatolian Shepherd cross. He was relinquished back to the same shelter he had been adopted from at 11 wks of age due to increasing aggression towards other dogs and people (including family members).

His behavior - observed before his exposure to "Release" - included constant clinging, whining, and approval seeking. He was very reactive to all noises outside including cars, people, and other dogs. He would run towards noise aggressively - barking and then turn back - repeatedly looking at the caregiver for approval.