Positive Association is essential when using Aromatherapy with Your Pets

An article our Founder wrote that will appear in the May/June issue of Dogs Naturally magazine:

Aromatherapy, a wonderful alternative and compliment to traditional medicine, uses essential oils of plants to enhance and stimulate psychological and physical well-being in pets and people. By inhaling these essential oil aromas, there is a hard-wired effect linked to our limbic system, which is the part of our brain responsible for mood, emotion, and memories. Thus, it is essential when introducing aromatherapy to our pets, that a positive environment is created so they will have the best possible memory associated with that aroma.

As humans, we can communicate verbally and explain to each other why we’d use a particular essential oil and the beneficial outcome expected. With pets, we need to create a positive association through our introduction to the aroma and our actions. We are responsible for their positive associations and when introducing anything new, we need to make their experience as pleasurable as possible.

Take for instance using aromatherapy to help alleviate the fear of thunderstorms. With a person, we can say “I would like you to use this aromatherapy every time you feel stress from the thunderstorm. As you breathe in the aroma, you will feel the calming effects of the oil”. Because you were told this information, your brain forms a positive association or memory to the essential oil; thus, allowing the calming effects to take hold. Due to our inability to communicate in the same manner with our animals, if you were to introduce essential oils during a thunderstorm to an animal, the association would be made referencing the scary thunderstorm, which would significantly reduce any receptiveness to the aroma.

As mentioned earlier, aromatherapy should be introduced in a positive environment. Take the oil, go to a quiet, happy place you and your animal enjoy and slowly introduce the oil while playing, having fun, and relaxing. Over time, they will associate this aroma with a positive experience; then, if you know there is a thunderstorm on its way, or something your animal perceives as a negative, you can use the oil as a means to help them relax in a given situation.

Aromatherapy with animals is not an overnight cure, but is a tool that when introduced over time can assist in a number of psychological and physical issues. As their sense of smell is much greater than humans, it is essential to go slow, use a little, and watch their reactions closely while introducing the aromas. A little bit of essential oils and a whole lot of positive memories can go a long way when using aromatherapy with animals.

By: Wendy England

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Daisy & Wendy making positive memories any chance they can get.

The Power of Instinct & Natural Healing...a Lovebird's Story

For over seven years two un-handled lovebirds (just un-handled not un-loved), Pedro and Lilly, lived together harmoniously in my home until one day this past December when tragedy struck. It was early evening and we were heading out the door for an evening of fun. My daughter peered in our lovebirds cage and said “Mom, I think Lilly is stuck in their furry hut”. When I heard this, I thought there is no way she is stuck. The birds have been using this type of hut for over seven years with no incident. As I rushed to the cage, I saw her flailing about with her leg caught in a piece of fabric on the inside of the fur hut. It took my husband, daughter, and I approximately 10 agonizing minutes to free her from the hut. When the final string was cut, disaster struck and blood started pumping out of one of her front toes that she had injured during the struggle. We tried feverishly to stop the bleeding, but this coupled with being handle and separated from Pedro had Lilly’s adrenalin so high the bleeding continued. A trip to the emergency vet was definitely in order.

We placed Lilly back into the cage with Pedro and quickly drove to the nearest emergency vet office. By the time we reach the emergency office the bleeding stopped. It was such a relief and I was hopeful that the vet would be able to do something to fix her. Unfortunately, while speaking to the vet we received unsettling news that because Lilly was a un-handled bird anything they did to evaluate and save her life came with great risk of a fatal outcome (i.e.. Vet handling, antibiotics, anesthesia, etc...). We were also told that if we decided to take her home without treatment it would not be considered the wrong decision. This was all I needed to hear, because of my strong belief of treating health and well-being as naturally as possible. My instinct also told me this was the right thing to do so we headed home without treatment. Unknowingly, the three weeks to follow would have me questioning, testing, but ultimately awakening a deeper belief in the power of instinct and natural healing.

Once we arrived home with Lilly, all the chaos of the evening was quickly replaced with feelings of should have, could have, and what if. I realized that this was unhealthy for both of us in her recovery, but I just felt so helpless. I physically couldn’t do anything for her. I was not able to hold her like our other pets, touch her, or applying anything to the wound. To make matters worse she slowly removed her front toes day after day which would cause her to bleed out on a regular basis. The only thing I could do during this time was feed her, keep the cage scrupulously clean, and send loving, positive, and healing energy her way. My mantra during this time was “Helpless but Hopeful” and let me tell you I would have to repeat this over and over in my mind. Initially, I really questioned that there would be a good outcome and Lily’s daily self-destruction of her toes really tested my belief in instinct and natural healing. Although I questioned her ability to heal and my beliefs were tested, I remained hopeful that she would pull through.

One morning about three weeks after Lilly’s horrific accident, I was awakened to the sound of Lilly and Pedro singing. After the accident, Lilly stopped singing and would barely speak. To hear her belting out a tune with Pedro was priceless. Before I even got out of bed, I knew this was a positive sign. In the days to follow Lilly’s prognosis continued to improve. Once Lilly removed her two front toes, she stopped chewing on her foot. The wound healed with no signs of infection, and she quickly adapted to maneuvering around on one and a half feet. She will perch on one foot comfortably with the damaged foot tucked in her feathers. This amazing story of natural healing didn’t stop on the physical level either.....I believe that because Pedro and I provided her with so much positive and loving energy, she is in a happier emotionally then she was prior to this tragic event. Pedro has even taken it a step further for her and will now perch on one foot just like Lilly. I think it is his way of showing her how much he cares. If she has to perch on one foot, then he will too!

Being a part of Lilly’s incident has deepened my belief in the power of instinct and natural healing. It also reinforces my mission for Daisy Paw and that is to continue to only use organic and pure essential oils for our Daisy’s Blends that you place in our Collar Companions for aromatherapy. It brings me much joy to know that our company naturally helps pets and people feel better.

Wendy England, Owner, Daisy Paw

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Lilly today... perching happily with Pedro!

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