Essential Oil use for animals, especially cats and birds, is controversial. Why? Because poor-quality oils, plug-in/spray air fresheners, odor eliminating sprays, perfumes, fabric softeners and toxic cleaners can cause illness in pets ranging from seizures, elevated kidney/liver values, feather picking, skin problems, and ear infections. This has even been true for products that are "guaranteed" by the veterinary community to be safe and non-toxic but lack scientific data to substantiate their claims. Most problems with essential oils arise when human-intended essential oils with no instructions for proper use regarding animals are used. AnimalEO is Veterinary Formulated and labeled with accurate recommendations for the animals that the product is intended for!
Beneficial effects of supremely sourced and clean essential oils have on dogs, cats, horses, cows, exotics, and many other animals has been well documented. Though it is nearly impossible to monitor every essential oil released by every company and most essential oil singles and blends that are created with humans in mind are just not appropriate to use with animals unless strict instructions and guidelines are followed. Every essential oils that goes into every AnimalEO product is personally evaluated by Dr. Melissa Shelton, DVM, to ensure that every product is as perfect and safe as it can be.
Fractionated Coconut Oil, Essential Oils of Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans), Rosemary Verbenone CT (Rosmarinus officinalis), Helichrysum (H. italicum), Frankincense (Boswellia carterii), Copaiba (Copaifera officinalis), Basil (Ocimum basilicum), Black Spruce (Picea mariana), Lemon (Citrus limonum), Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha), Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens), Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), Marjoram (Origanum majorana), Peppermint (Mentha piperita), Oregano (Oreganum vulgare), Thyme (Thymus vulgaris), Coriander Seed (Coriandrum sativum), Juniper (Juniperus communis), Balsam Fir (Abies balsamea), Clove (Eugenia caryophyllata), Ledum (L. groenlandicum), Clary Sage (Salvea sclarea), Sandalwood (Santalum spicatum), German Chamomile (Matricaria recutita), Spikenard (Nardostachys jatamansi), Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens), Citronella (Cymbopogon nardus), Catnip (Nepeta cataria), Melissa (Melissa officinalis), Dill Weed (Anethum graveolens).
Adrenal fatigue and dis-ease can happen in all species of animals. Whether a primary concern such as Cushing's Disease or Addison's - or simply just adrenal stress due to chronic health concerns or even emotional distress - supporting adrenal health and normal function is an important part of holistic health.
There is often concern when supporting adrenals holistically; how can hyper-adrenal (too much) AND hypo-adrenal (too little) functions both be supported by the same thing? This is simple when you understand the concept of true holistic and integrative medicine and treatments. Drugs treat a problem and usually only one problem. If the adrenal glands are functioning "too much" the medical community will work to suppress them. And if the adrenals are not functioning enough the medical community will just give you some of the chemicals they were supposed to be secreting. Holistically, we try to give the body the tools it needs to function NORMALLY. Not too high, and not too low. Like the "Goldie Locks Zone" - just right! Most of the natural tools and support items we supply to a body will help to balance and normalize the body's own natural functions and recognition of what is normal. These types of modalities may include herbs, homeopathy, glandulars, and/or essential oils - and we often refer to them as adaptogens. Truly, a body will always know what is wrong, and what is best for it. It is up to "us" - as animal care givers - to make sure that we provide the animal with the proper nutrition (unfortunately lacking for generations), water, supplements, exercise, lifestyle, etc. that is healthy for it to function. And, when things are not right, we often have to figure out why.
Adrenal glands are mysterious little creatures. Even veterinarians rarely understand them fully. While we won't go into a full discussion of how the adrenals function, what their jobs are, and what it looks like when things go wrong - it is important to understand a few key points. Adrenal glands are responsible for secreting our body's natural "stress hormones" - cortisol - and also function greatly in balancing very important electrolytes - potassium and sodium. This is the greatly simplified version.
Beyond the "common" adrenal diseases - such as Cushing's and Addison's - there is just basic adrenal fatigue. This is like expecting to do a huge body building, weight lifting routine every day. Day in and day out. Without any rest. Although this might be a normal and healthy activity - to build muscles - eventually without a rest cycle, the body may fatigue and just fail. This is what can commonly happen with animals. Stress is the hidden exercise that the adrenal glands must "do". But they are small, hidden, and you would never know that they are really very, very tired...until it is too late.
But what qualifies as stress? The bad part is - ALMOST ANYTHING! Is your dog an anxiety dog? Does your cat have allergies? Is your bird a feather picker? Does your horse have a lameness? Did you introduce a new animal to your home? Did you go to an obedience class? Board your dog? Did you vaccinate recently? Go on a vet visit? Spay or neuter? All of these things cause stress - whether we recognize it or not. Normally, we go to bed, get through a REM cycle, and regenerate from the day's stress. But, unfortunately, many animals never get the rest that was required to "re-set" their adrenal glands and make them "happy" again. They may be continuing on their "stress cycle" because they are not used to being in a crate yet (new puppy), or we leave a TV or light on in the home which disturbs true sleep... You'd be amazed at the things that continue a stress cycle to flourish. Even a vaccination can cause hidden physical stress, and over time create issues for the "never-rested" adrenal gland.
Often times, we forget to recognize how important adrenal support is. With almost every single situation, adrenal support is the right thing to do. Chronic issues that are not resolving as quickly as we would like - seem to have a great amount of turn around once the adrenals are remembered. They are small, hidden, and often overlooked.
Enter Essential Oils - The cool part of essential oil use, is that we are often supporting adrenal replenishment without even knowing it. Are you diffusing in your home? If not, you should be! There is a ton of scientific research on the stress reducing and sleep promoting properties of essential oils. Diffusing anything at all, is likely to contribute to a healthier adrenal system.
Beyond stress reduction, emotional support, and better sleep - essential oils are even being shown to reduce cortisol levels. Clary Sage reduces cortisol plasma levels - but it also appears to do it in the "adaptogenic" way; apparently reducing cortisol to a higher level in women that were more "stressed" - and to a lesser degree for those who may not have needed it. Smart... Very smart.
In general, I am not concerned with the use of an essential oil that reduces cortisol levels in stressful situations - with an animal who may already be experiencing low cortisol levels. I really find that these essential oils are actually aiding in having the body BALANCE the cortisol levels - not just to reduce them without concern for what the body may need. We'll leave that job up to pharmaceuticals.
AdrenoBalance™ - Supporting normal adrenal function
AdrenoBalance was created specifically with those animals in mind, who need a bit more support in the "adrenal department." Whether a horse with Metabolic Syndrome, or a dog with Cushing's or Addison's - these animals can benefit from many of the essential oils that are traditionally known for their support of the adrenal system. Of course, the adrenal glands do not act on their own. They are intimately tied in with the entire body and endocrine system - so often times support of the Pituitary, Hypothalamus, Kidneys, Liver, etc...will also benefit adrenal health.
AdrenoBalance is a Ready To Use (RTU) product - which is already diluted to a rate that most animals can tolerate easily. AdrenoBalance builds upon our KittyBoost formula - adding a myriad of adrenal supporting essential oils to the already amazing and supportive blend. KittyBoost as well as AdrenoBalance are not "just for cats" - and we'll describe each additional oil below the
Instructions for Use: Almost all animals can use AdrenoBalance™. Although, further dilution may be required for certain species.
Cats: Cats can use AdrenoBalance in place of KittyBoost when extra support of their adrenal glands is necessary. Cats rarely get the "classic" adrenal diseases that dogs get, however are susceptible to drug induced adrenal issues. Chronic use of steroids can create a variety of endocrine problems for cats - however, are still relied upon commonly by most practitioners for frustrating cases such as stomatitis, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, allergies, eosinophilic plaques, rodent ulcers and more. For most of these cats - I would still suggest use of the KittyBoost first and foremost. But, for cats with chronic and unresponsive conditions, undue stress, known adrenal issues, or for those who have not adequately responded to KittyBoost - AdrenoBalance is an excellent option. Just as described for ferrets above, cats can usually use the AdrenoBalance right out of the bottle, in the same methods as described for KittyBoost. However, for those of a more delicate nature - further dilution initially as described is a wise start.
Dogs: A dog's life can be stressful. Although we often say we'd love to live a "dog's life" - in this day and age, our society has created quite the change in quality of life. Dogs can experience undue stress as they leave their litter, are adopted, vaccinated, spayed or neutered, or just live in every day "human life." We sadly have turned our own world into bright artificial lights in un-natural time cycles, long work hours, lots of indoor time, lack of full spectrum natural sunlight, processed foods, poor water quality, and exposures to toxic chemicals (just to name a few). All of these things can add to poor adrenal recovery and function for our pooches.
For genenal maintenance, healthy "normal" dogs can have an occasional application of AdrenoBalance for added support of their adrenals. This application can be inserted into an AromaBoost application - generally between the #3 and #4 application - although any spot is technically okay. Use whichever schedule you are using for your AromaBoost applications - and apply the same amount of drops as you would with formulas 1-5.
You can also apply AdrenoBalance as a separate application. In general, 3-5 drops are applied to small dogs, around 10 pounds (4.5 kgs) and under. However, for dogs who are new to oils, or may be more sensitive - diluting your first few applications can make applications easier on your dog.
Basically, you can just drip the oils up the back and massage in, or you may apply the drops to your hands and then apply them to your dog in a Petting manner. For larger dogs - you can usually apply more drops. For dogs between 25-50 pounds applying 5-8 drops is average. And for dogs over 50 pounds - a range of 6-12 drops can be used. For dogs new to essential oils - starting with even less than the recommended amounts, or with further diluted oils can be a good way to ensure you do not create an oil aversion. You may not see results with lesser amounts, or with further diluted oils sometimes, but since we are also wanting to create a "happy" situation with oil use for your dog, and not overwhelm them - the added time to slowly build up concentrations of essential oil use can be worth it.
For dogs who have been diagnosed with Addison's Disease or Cushing's Disease - the situations can be a bit more critical - especially with Addison's. It is very important that you work with your veterinarian, and monitor your dog closely with their aid. Never neglect the use of veterinary diagnostics and traditional treatments when they are indicated, and make sure to tell your vet that you are using natural substances that help support adrenal health and function. Occasionally, a patient has required less of a traditional drug, when a holistic approach to health has been implemented. This is a good thing! However, we must be aware that if a body requires less in terms of dosages, we need to be well aware of it!
For my own dogs - I will rotate through several of the body specific support blends, each time I perform their "routine maintenance". So, if my dogs get a monthly AromaBoost RTU applied - I will insert AdrenoBalance one month, then CardioBoost another month, and so on. However, for my patients who do have existing adrenal disease, I will strive to support their adrenal function much more often, and regularly. In some cases, daily applications can be considered - but I find that every 3-7 days is average for most dogs experiencing adrenal stress.
For Use Instructions for Horses, Cows, Goats, and other large animals, Birds, Chickens, Small Exotics and Ferrets: Please see AnimalEO.com
Oils added specifically for AdrenoBalance*:
Nutmeg essential oil has been considered useful for stress reduction, with extreme tiredness, as a nerve tonic, and is often referred to as an adrenal supporting oil. Caution may be taken with animals who are bleeding, have a tendency to bleed, or are on any sort of anti-coagulant therapy with Nutmeg oil - as it has been reported to have anti-coagulant properties - although according to the book "Essential Oil Safety" by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young - there were no reported contraindications or drug interactions noted with nutmeg essential oil. Also, I typically note that anti-coagulant actions of essential oils is generally only a concern when used as an undiluted single essential oil - and typically in an oral route. However, careful monitoring with your veterinarian is wise for any animal within this category. There is also research that Nutmeg oil may be hepatoprotective and also induce the Cytochrome P450 Liver pathway - which may frustrate some traditional medical practitioners. This trait, that is actually common in a long list of essential oils, is often looked upon in a favorable way holistically. Having a liver that is better able to function and clear itself of medications and chemicals, is really a good thing. However, if you are relying on certain medications to be in the body at certain levels, then yes - you could find a situation where a body functions more normally (which to me is a good thing) - and therefore clears out medications from the body at a more efficient rate. Again, you should always work with a veterinarian to determine if your animal is operating at a more productive and healthy level - and may require alterations to their regular treatment regimen.
Rosemary Verbenone Chemotype: Milder than other chemotypes, Rosemary aids in the support of many other vital body systems that influence the adrenals: cardiovascular, hepatic/gallbladder, and urologic. Rosemary has been referred to as an "endocrine equilibriant" - helping to support and allow the body to regulate the hypothalamus, pituitary, and sex glands - and is very helpful with general fatigue, glandular disorders, and general debility. According to the Tisserand book noted above, there is no evidence of Rosemary having hypertensive properties - and so many reports of it being contraindicated for use when high blood pressure is present - is unfounded.
Lemon: Lemon oil is widely used in all species, and in many routes. It has a very wide safety margin. Lemon is supportive to the immune system, normal white blood cell counts, aides in gentle cleansing, blood purification and detoxification, reduces anxiety and is a nervine relaxant. Lemon is generally regarded for kidney and urinary support. Lemon essential oil is photosensitizing, however, the concentration within AdrenoBalance is generally not at a level of concern. However, avoidance of full sun exposure to skin for 12 hours after application may be advisable, especially in hairless areas.
Black Spruce: A very special oil, rich in spiritual connection and is added to AdrenoBalance for its contribution to hormonal and cortisol balance. Spruce is helpful for many conditions - and is excellent for sudden fatigue and exhaustion. Spruce is a fundamental essential oil for our veterinary practice to use when we wish to reduce the need for prescription steroids.
Balsam Fir: An amazing oil that we have noted to be very beneficial in cases in need of adrenal support.
Juniper: Reported to support the renal (kidney) and pancreatic systems, and is a tonic for the nervous system.
Coriander Seed: Beneficial to adrenals. According to research, induces Glutathione S-Transferase, and is likely to be supportive and protective of liver health.
Clove: One of the most anti-oxidant essential oils - it can help to reduce damage of every day life in the body. Although controversial due to high Eugenol content - Clove oil used in proper amounts is highly beneficial in supporting the body. Included in small amounts within this blend, Clove adds its benefits, without undue worry. However, care should be taken with animals who are bleeding, have a tendency to bleed, or are on any sort of anti-coagulant therapy when Clove oil is used. The over-use of essential oil(s) that have anti-coagulant actions (such as Clove), especially in oral administration, can produce a temporary and dose dependent increase in bleeding and reduction of clotting. With proper dosing and usage, as described for AdrenoBalance, we have not experienced concern clinically.
Spikenard: Spikenard has been known as a precious oil throughout history, and its health benefits are often powerful. Relief of nervous tension and support of the immune system are only a few of the main functions it contributes to AdrenoBalance.
Geranium: Used for many purposes in the animal kingdom, Geranium can be useful for liver and pancreas support, skin conditions, hormone balancing, and to stimulate the healthy output of the adrenocortical glands.
Ledum: Often regarded as an oil for liver support. It is helpful to support animals with elevated liver enzymes - common with hyper-adrenocorticism (Cushing's).
Clary Sage: Commonly thought of for support in hormone balancing.
Basil, Linalool Chemotype: Reported to support recovery from fatigue and insufficiency and weakness of the adrenal cortex.
Sandalwood, Australian: Supportive to the lymph and veinous systems, it also helps with nervous tension.
Dill Weed: Supportive of normal blood sugar levels and liver function, it is considered a very safe oil.
Caution: Not every animal should use every animalEO product. Just because the products are "for animals", does not mean that the same product intended for dogs, should be used with birds and so on. If you have questions about the use of your products please contact us, or contact Dr. Melissa Shelton, DVM at AnimalEO