I always had a lot of pets growing up so it is one of my weaknesses to say ‘no’ to my girls when they want a new pet. Even if it has scales, scurries and resembles mythical beasts from fairy tales. So when my Zoe came home announced she had to have a Bearded Dragon (lizard) I said no. After all I had no reptile experience; but as we all know, children have an infinite amount of determination getting what they want and finally she insisted it was the only thing she wanted for her birthday. After much discussion we finally gave in and Little Foot came home.
As it turns out there is a lot about Bearded Dragons that was surprising. First, they like people. Yep, I’m totally not kidding; ours will sit on my shoulder happy as a little clam, ahem, lizard. They like to have stimulation so they enjoy a place where there is a lot of activity and will even watch the television. I like to show ours Godzilla and How to Train Your Dragon just in case he can understand more than I think. As an added bonus they are super easy to take care of, despite us quickly learning that Zoe is terrified of crickets. A little irony there, we live in Alaska surrounded by bears, wolves and killer whales and she is terrified of a cricket. Fortunately, for her and Little Foot, none of the rest of us shares that affliction.
What do Breaded Dragons have to do with holistic health anyway? Well, I’m a firm believer that health isn’t just us and our bodies; it is our whole lifestyle, our families and our pets. I think pets enhance our lives and couldn’t live without them. Along my wonderful journey with essential oils, I’ve met some wonderful people and made great friends and some amazing business partners. One of those people is my friend and business partner Tammy Wendt. As luck would have it her son, Ashton Wendt, is a Bearded Dragon breeder. When Tammy started using essential oils, she and Corrie Ratzat, Certified Aromatherapist, started to do some research on using essential oils and reptiles and so I thought I’d share some tips with you. Before go into them though a note of caution. You can only use the highest quality essential oils and small amounts with your reptiles. Questions about quality? Visit: Essential Oil Quality
Essential Oils for Reptiles
How do I use essential oils on reptiles?
Topical Application: Diluting 1 drop of essential oil with ½ tsp of coconut or other reptile safe carrier oil and apply directly to area as needed.
Diffuse: Using a cool mist diffuser near the reptile’s habitat is an effective way to administer essential oils. Simply adding 1-3 drops of desired essential oil with water is all that is needed. This is most helpful when dealing with respiratory problems.
Water Misting: Adding 4 drops of desired essential oil for every 4 ounces of distilled water into spray bottle is an effective way to spray mist the reptile, caging and even food items as needed (shake bottle before each use). Use glass or stainless steel. Do not use a plastic spray bottle. (This is my favorite method to use)
Note: Although some essential oil users may recommend adding a drop of essential oil to soaking water as another method of application. We do not recommend this. Without an emulsifier added to water, the essential oil easily separates and remains at water surface; causing immediate, undiluted skin contact upon entry into water. Because of this, improper dosage and even contact dermatitis may occur.
Essential Oils to provide support for common problems:
If your dragon gets too much sun or gets too close to their heat source, Lavender is soothing and comforting.
- If your dragon gets too much sun or to close to heat, Lavender can be soothing.
- Skin irritations and itching, try the Cleansing Blend.
- Mouth irritations, try the protective blend.
- Healthy immune support, try Frankincense oil with proper supplementation.
- Digestive support, try the Digestive Blend.
Oils recommended for reptiles: Respiratory Blend* (Diffused), Digestive Blend*, Frankincense, Grapefruit, Helichrysum, Lavender, Lemon, Protective Blend*, Cleansing Blend&, Wild Orange.
Safety: Never apply essential oils undiluted directly to skin. If undesirable results occur, discontinue use. As with humans and other animals; small amounts of essential oil used often is more effective than a single large dose at one time.
I can’t emphasize enough that only tiny amounts are used. Err on the side of caution and use the smallest amount possible. Even dipping a toothpick in the oil and diluting it is acceptable.
*Blends mentioned are commercial blends. Visit here for more info: Generic Names for Commercial Blends
A big thank you to Tammy Wendt, Essential Oil Expert; Ashton Wendt Bearded Dragon Breeder and Corrie Ratzat, Certified Aromatherapist for sharing their knowledge and expertise.
Interested in essential oils? Please contact me for more information. The company I recommend does not allow their product sold on independent websites.