noise phobia cocker spaniel hiding under couch

Thunder/Noise Phobia – Aromatherapy Part 3

Dog Noise Phobia, along with Dog Noise Anxiety, are terms sometimes used by dog owners and veterinarians to describe canine fear of and the corresponding stress and anxiety responses to loud noises.

Aromatherapy can be very effective in helping our frightened dogs through thunderstorms, fireworks or other anxiety.

Instinctual reactions for animals are normal when danger is perceived. Fight, flight, freeze, faint or even to act silly are all instinctual reactions to fear and/or stress that are elicited under a variety of circumstances. 

The sympathetic nervous system is activated with stress. In part, the sympathetic nervous system regulates the size of the eye’s pupil, gut motility, urinary output, and secretes adrenaline. This stress reaction is commonly known as the fight-or-flight response.  Regulating the safety of the body under stressful circumstances with perceived danger is the primary function. This works really well out in the wild for animals.  However, under domestic situations, our dog’s reactions are not always great in everyday life.

When our pets react to stress during thunderstorms, fireworks, gunshots or other similar scary situations, parts of their brain are stimulated that do not involve conscious thought or thinking processes. Adrenaline is pumping so the need to move/run or fight is activated.  Fear, anxiety, panic are all part of this response.

In the wild, when stressed and frightened, an animal may run from the noise to find safety in a natural hideaway like a den or burrow. When your dog is frightened of thunder or fireworks, they often will scale fences, jump through screens and even windows to take flight.  Some will seek a burrow or den like place such as under the house, the bed, or into a closet.

Whatever the cause of the noise anxiety, you can take definite steps to help your dog.

Quality, seed to seal guarenteed essential oils deliver positive emotional benefits to the body via inhaling them. Aromatherapy is the art and practice of using essential oils extracted from aromatic plants and herbs to restore or enhance well-being.

How does aromatherapy work? Well, it depends on the method of using essential oils,  however my focus today is on the therapy of inhalation of diffused oils to ease stress and anxiety in noise phobic dogs.

Aromatherapy’s effect on the brain:
The Japanese have a long tradition of using aromatherapy, and they have much respect for it. In 1985 research into the beneficial mind-altering effects of essential oils was started in Japan by Dr Shizuo Torii who, by measuring brain waves, showed that some aromas can have a stimulating effect while others can have a relaxing effect.

Aromatherapy phobia treatment dramatically soothes both psychological and physiological conditions.

The molecules of essential oils work when they are inhaled because, aromatic molecules interact with the surface of the nasal cavity. And by tiny olfactory nerves located in the roof of the inner nose, these aromatic molecules are transmitted to the part of the brain called the limbic system.

The limbic system interacts with the body to control the heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, memory, stress level and hormone balance. The essential oil is then circulated through the bloodstream and reabsorbed systematically by specific body parts to release pressure and bring on the sense of being absolutely refreshed and relaxed.  In turn, this creates more confidence and positive thinking/emotions.

To read more about the art and benefits of diffusing essential oils be sure to read my article on  Diffusing Essential Oils For Pets

Therapeutic or quality “grade A” essential oils have a powerful effect on moods and general state of mind. The body’s response time to inhalation of essential oils can be as quick as one to three seconds! This is why inhalation, the diffusion of essential oils can be the preferred method of use of the essential oils.

I personally have used individual oils and professional blends found to gently relieve stress and calm anxious dogs (Humans too!) to safely get them through thunderstorms, fireworks and other events that cause anxiety.  These essential oils and blends, when used in conjunction with desensitization and counter-conditioning (DCC) have produced some wonderful results!

“For a list of these oils or oil blends by name,  just drop me an email and ask for the list of calming essential oils that I have used successfully.

Would you like to know which essential oils I have personally used for both for my own companion animals and family… and why?  (click here)






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