My essential oils journey began in earnest because of an absolutely amazing Neapolitan Mastiff named Shadrach. He came to me out of immense adversity. From the tragic and sudden loss of a close cousin I learned of him. Then I learned of his own very heart-breaking adversity of abuse and starvation. He came to us broken and in great need at the tender age of 4 1/2 months. He had so many challenges to overcome – his fears, his nightmares, his health challenges….however, it was those very things that moved me out of my own comfort zone to help him.
If it weren’t for him, I’d not have been searching for a more excellent way of care and wellness – for him and then ultimately for me and my husband and the subsequent dogs that have graced our lives. He moved me outside of my conventional veterinary technician thinking to give him the life I felt he deserved. Through some health challenges of his, I decided to go “all natural” and forgo the conventional care that had brought him to such a decline in his health. The long story short is, as a result of an adverse event with conventional medications and conventional rearing, I switched him at age four years to a totally natural lifestyle. That meant no toxins in the home or on/in him ever again, a natural raw carnivore diet, and essential oils to keep his body vibrating at the right frequencies. In fact, I went back to school and became an animal naturopath because of him! But it all started with essential oils!
Over the years I used a variety of essential oils with him. My favorite story though is the time I decided to try using a direct application of frankincense with him. After all, I’d heard of “frankincense” all my life through the Christmas story, as well as experienced the resin burners in church, so I was very curious about it. Having grown up in a faith that used the resin in certain ceremonies, I loved the scent of it as a resin, then later as an essential oil. I treasured it as gold and who better to share it with than the dog that brought me to the use of essential oils in the first place!
Since Shadrach was used to me applying various essential oils to him for joint support after our daily workouts and his doggie play dates, to aid his respiratory system and soothe his skin, I knew he loved the oils a lot!
He was always such a “sniffer” so he made the perfect candidate to use as my “guinea” dog oils tester. Before the essential oils he was always curious about anything I was using on myself so I would sometimes let him sniff things – which isn’t something I’d do today with those types of products! At any rate, he would bark and make faces of disgust (which is quite funny and dramatic on a Neapolitan Mastiff) if he disliked a scent. I didn’t blame him one bit when I learned of the toxic ingredients in most of my personal care and household products! No wonder he barked in disgust. Thank you Shadrach!!
With essential oils, he would take three deep sniffs from the bottle if he liked it or wanted that particular oil. If he wasn’t interested or didn’t want that oil, he would turn his head away. Something he never was, was subtle.
This particular day he was perched up on my bed as the king he perceived himself to be, watching me as I brought out my essential oils collection to decide which ones to apply to him that day after our daily run. I had done some researching and investigation into frankincense and had included it in various blends I made to support Shadrach. I knew how great frankincense was for skeletal support and had used it for such in my blends for him. I had even diffused it for him in combination with peppermint to support him through a fiery trial he endured.
Back to the topical application of frankincense….
I decided to apply the frankincense, “neat” (undiluted – I trust quality of the oils I use) to the top of Shadrach’s head and a dab just above the spot between the eyes. I used one drop. Immediately following my application of the oil, I noticed Shadrach’s eyes opened wide! Then he jumped off my bed, ran down the hallway and stopped. He turned around and slowly walked back towards me with a look of what I can only call “amazement” on his funny, baggy face. It was as if he was saying to me, “WOW what was that?” He was pretty happy in his entire demeanor for the rest of day!
I used frankincense on him throughout the years for various things which I am not allowed to divulge (FDA constraints), that he developed in his advanced years. Interestingly enough they did what was needed to help his body do what it needed to do. He always was delighted to sniff the bottle of frankincense and always seemed to enjoy my application of it to him as well.
Even though Shadrach was raw fed and naturally reared for the last nearly eight years of his life, he had suffered the epigenetic damage of generations of conventional rearing of his ancestry not to mention the first four years of his own life. However, that said, not many dogs nowadays live to the age he did even as small dogs never mind giant breed dogs like him. I know the essential oils, chiropractic care, massage and the whole health lifestyle are what afforded him the quality of life and longevity he received and deserved.
I thank God for bringing this amazing dog into my life and as a result it has completely changed for the better! I am grateful for Shadrach and every dog since that has continued to stretch me and teach me ways to enhance their own health and to overcome any wellness challenges with a whole health lifestyle as the foundation while using a huge variety of essential oils to support and harmonize their bodies.
“Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place“. ~2 Corinthians 2:14, NKJV
To learn more about Shadrach visit his Memorial Page.
Dr. Kim Bloomer is an animal naturopath, a proficient blogger, writer, podcaster and presenter on natural pet care as well as the co-founder of a former online school in animal naturopathy. She is the author/co-author of four books: Whole Health for Happy Dogs, Animals Taught Me That, Essential Oils in Animal Care: A Naturopathic Approach, and an allegory Be Transformed, Be Renewed, Be Well. Dr. Kim’s articles have been featured in various publications in both print and online. To learn more about the essential oils or a whole health life style for your dog go to Aromatherapy for Dogs or DOGgone Wellness.