Not Just For Koalas: Eucalyptus Oil for Dogs

Eucalyptus is more than just the main source of food for koalas, it’s a powerhouse plant loaded with amazing compounds that have many healing properties that can benefit your pet. Unfortunately, when you try to research this oil and its benefits for our pets, there is a lot of misinformation and rumors being spread. So let’s dive into this amazing plant, the different types and their benefits, safety of eucalyptus oil for dogs, and how to choose the right kind for your pet.

What is Eucalyptus?

Eucalyptus is a type of fast-growing tree mostly native to Australia. Its leaves and oil have been chewed and eaten, and its oil has been applied to the skin for centuries. Eucalyptus is widely regarded as a wonderful flea and tick repellent, disinfectant, skin soother, odor eliminator, and respiratory therapy. The main medicinal compound in Eucalyptus is 1,8 cineole, also known as eucalyptol. This compound is responsible for most of the respiratory benefits we commonly associate with Eucalyptus. It has also been researched to have numerous anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. The other important compound in the plant, called Piperitone, another monoterpene that is found in many wines and has decongestant and diuretic properties.

Species of Eucalyptus:

Eucalyptus is an all-encompassing name, as there are several species of this plant. Types include:

Eucalyptus Blue (Eucalyptus bicostata)

Native to Ecuador, this is the milder type of Eucalyptus and is commonly used for insect repelling purposes. Its safety in pets has not been well researched, so it’s best to avoid this oil for use on or around pets to err on the side of safety.

Lemon Eucalyptus (eucalyptus citriodora)

As its name implies, this type of Eucalyptus has a lemony scent, and is even more powerful an insect repellent due to its due content of PMD (p-Methane-3,8-diol). In research it’s been shown to rival DEET in its insect repellency. This type of Eucalyptus works well as an aromatic mist for bugs and is considered safe around all species, when diluted appropriately.

Eucalyptus Dives

Commonly called Peppermint or Broadleaf Eucalyptus, this oil is much lower in 1,8-cineole, and therefore has few safety issues associated with it. Although it lacks a large amount of eucalyptol, it is rich in Piperitone, so it still has respiratory benefits associated with it. However, it has not been well-researched in pets so it’s best to stay away from this type until more research can prove its efficacy and safety for pets.



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