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Essential Oils and our (fur) family

As promised, here is the information about our (fur) family and essential oils. First I’m going to tell you about some history and some belief systems, then I’m going to talk about how to use the oils in your home. There is a lot of misinformation about oils all over everything right now. Hopefully I can help clear some of this up.

D. Gary Young, the founder of Young Living Oils, as I understand it, had some health challenges and went around the world studying what cultures who are healthy did differently than what he was doing. Gary, in his heart, is about farming and creating/producing the most beneficial essential oils. He was never about how to sell them, that came later and from others. Gary is also recognized as the main driving force behind getting essential oils mainstream before him, essential oils were generally used by the “hippies” or alternative communities.

But, I digress….He came home from his trips with fabulous information about health-which is very different than conversations about the disease process and symptoms.

Can you imagine being so excited about bringing the concept of health to people, and the frustration of a) having to about talk symptoms and b) being thought a quack unless he talked symptoms and c) still being thought of as a quack because it wasn’t the “standard of care”? So, he started talking symptoms, to meet people where they were. He felt a need to prove that this amazing information he discovered was not quackery, and so spent huge amounts of money to pay for research to prove that this stuff worked.

To further complicate things, there are three different thought processes about how to use essential oils….one is you can only use them aromatically (in the air), the second is that you can use them aromatically, and topically (on skin)- but it must be diluted- and the third says they can go on straight (on skin) or “neat” as well as internally. The most common system is the second one. Remember I said Gary is about producing the most beneficial oils and that he paid to have research done?

So, if you go look up a use of an essential oil and you use an oil different than the quality of the oils used in research, might you have different results? You see the conundrum.

Additionally, there is a very limited group of people in this country who are legally allowed to talk about symptoms and diagnose and prescribe. They have letters like Dr. in front of their names, or APRN or PA after their names.

Unfortunately, many of the people using the oils, got really excited about this whole thing and how it worked and took a concept of health and applied a system of disease to speak about the oils. This is applied to many things….vitamins, supplements, herbal remedies, foods, etc. How many of us have heard, as an example, take turmeric for inflammation?

We collectively forgot we were talking about ways to create health.

Which brings us to today. The legalities of people without those letters talking about symptoms and essentially prescribing, became a big enough ground swell that the powers that be noticed and objected.

People who are trying to learn about oils are frustrated because the information is “really general, it doesn’t tell me how to fix my runny nose, broken leg, skin rash etc.” People who are trying to teach about oils are frustrated because a new way of speaking is being required and people who objected are frustrated because they feel like their turf is being taken over and/or they have seen damage done when people used essential oils without proper information.

Like the recent upsurge in the “organic” conversation, there are no current regulations/industry wide agreement about what “organic” (translate “pure”, “100%”, “therapeutic”) actually means. “Pure” can mean as little as 2% of the named essential oil is pure, but it is diluted with 98% pure vegetable oil or other carrier. What the heck?!

So, how do we change our thinking, our speech to reflect health? We start looking at stress/toxic levels in our bodies, in our pets bodies, in our homes. If we want to create health, we need to reduce the levels of stress on our systems so we enjoy health, not worry about symptoms. This is extremely hard to do when we or a loved one is struggling and hurting. We have a headache, we want it gone so we can do what we want to do or feel like we need to do. We don’t want to hurt.

Instead of trying to manage the inflammation by taking turmeric, or anything else, what if we asked, what stressors in my surroundings are causing my, or my (fur) family to have inflammation? Maybe we start to realize we have a lot of chemical products in our home. Maybe we realize we aren’t drinking enough water. Maybe we realize we aren’t sleeping because our mind just won’t be quiet. Maybe we realize that a relationship is not mutually beneficial. It could be any of thousands of things.

We are exposed to 250 times more toxins, more stressors in less than a year than our grandparents were in their lifetime. We have the noise pollution, light pollution, the greater and greater use of chemicals in our environments, we spend our time on computers and devices, and we are ingesting more and more chemicals and hormones. Now, I’m not saying this is all bad, there are things I love about reading late into the night, having music to play whenever I wish, writing on my computer. I am saying, we need to be informed and choosy about what we do in our environments.

How can we use essential oils to help reduce the toxins and stressors in our lives? How can we use essential oils to create health? I’m glad you asked.

So, each of us has a different chemical make-up, and so do our fur family. Something that works great for me, might not work at all for my husband. Something that works great for one animal, might not work at all for another. We have to become the experts of our own lives. And first, we need to minimize the stressors.

We can minimize the stressors by opening our homes up and letting the accumulated recycled air get fresher. We can make sure we drink enough water, and in glass containers, we can add the vitality essential oils to minimize unwanted elements to make the water taste better and reduce the body toxic load/stress levels. We thereby enhance the bodies health and well being. We can diffuse essential oils to reduce the chemicals, and get the double bonus of adding something beneficial to our environment. We can change our cleaning products for ourselves and our homes to products that are effective, smell good and have essential oils in them.

Generally speaking, citrus oils are cleansing and uplifting. Generally speaking the mint oils are powerful and soothing. Generally speaking the floral oils are for attracting new things into our lives, or enhancing things we already enjoy. Generally speaking, the tree oils are sedating and health enhancing. Generally speaking, the spice oils help bring balance to different bodily systems.

Do some citrus’s clean better than others? Of course. We have tons of products on the market that use or smell like lemon, we don’t have very many that use or smell like lime. So, how do we figure out which oils to use? We use ourselves and our fur family to find out what works best for each of us.

My recommendation is to get the Young Living Starter kit and start playing. The kit comes with a diffuser and 11 essential oils and blends. It also comes with a sample of a household cleaner and a nutrition packed juice sample. For instance, Panaway comes in the starter kit. Panaway and Cool Azul have many of the same functions, I go for Panaway and Paul goes for Cool Azul.

Difuse just one oil for three days and see how you feel and how your (fur) family responds. Difuse a diferent oil for the next three days and so on until you have moved through all the oils in the kit. Try using the oils on your body, the bottom of the feet are fabulous because they have thick skin and 7200 nerve endings in each foot. Put a drop or two on your hands, rub together, smell, invite your fur family to smell your hands, and then love on them.

You can also take three lids of essential oils and put them about 3 feet apart from each other, and let your fur family decide what works best for them. You can do three sedating oils, or three tree oils or three floral oils or one from each category. They know what will support them.

One of my favorite resources is my dear friend, mentor and vet, Dr. Nancy Brandt, DVM. She has written 2 books about how to use essential oils, specifically with fur family. The first book is “First Aid with Veterinary Medical Aromatherapy”, her second book is “Chemical Free Pets”. We have both in the office, or you can go on-line to to order the books.

If you or your fur family ever have a reaction, such as itching or burning or redness, dilute with any kind of vegetable oil…olive, coconut, avocado, jojoba. Water and oil don’t mix easily and trying to wash with water drives the oils in and makes it more intense. “Hot” oils such as cinnamon should always be diluted before using on bodies. Start small, 1-2 drops, work up if needed, dilute first if concerned.

Hopefully, you feel more informed and confident about how to start using essential oils for yourself and your loved ones. If you want to purchase oils you can go to or, just call the office and we can assist you.

We’d love to hear how you are creating health for you and yours! Send pictures, emails, or post in the SilverKnot facebook group. To your great health!

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