Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Aromatherapy for Setters

I've been talking with a friend who also has a "Fired up, frantic and freaked out" dog. Over and above clicker training while perusing this fantastic book, I suggested aromatherapy might help, and I'd like to share my mistakes and successes. 
When Sherlock first came, I was rubbing chamomile loaded in olive oil all down his spine...this worked, but I was kind of blowing his senses, way too strong, his nose would drip and drip...then one day when I used it again after an interlude, he fled outside to disperse the scent, and I had to carry him back in after a while, so unfortunately I've created distressing connotations.

I use lavender to wipe down the floors, so I didn't want to use it as a calming agent, jasmine and neroli are too expensive and I don't have them, which left me with bergamot, marjoram and frankincense. I put one drop each in a saucer of coconut oil, and decided to rub it on my own arms and face before bedtime, rather than on the dog, so the scent diffuses in the room, not directly on the dog's fur where he can't get away. 
Some sites suggest a doggie bandana, or the dog collar. Fine if you know the right dose that isn't too pungent. I would also recommend experimenting with finding a smell your dog really likes that visibly calms their behavior, rather than using a mix of three and winging it like I'm doing...

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