Is Palo Santo Safe for Dogs?

Natural remedies have been on the rise in recent years because of their low risks. Palo Santo is one of these remedies. It is a wood type used mainly as a pain remedy and to reduce inflammation and stress.

Regarding dogs, most experts recommend not using the wood. There is little evidence of its effects on dogs when administered by burning or diffusing it. It is actually known to result in severe health implications when your dog inhales it.

What is Palo Santo?

Native to South America, Palo Santo is a wood from the trees found in the region. It is used by the indigenous people in traditional spiritual and healing ceremonies. Its name translates to “holy wood” or “wood of the saints,” believed to have healing powers.

The tree it comes from is believed to be mystical and is closely related to myrrh and frankincense. It is used to make sticks that are burnt in ceremonies to get rid of evil spirits, cleanse spaces, and purify a person’s energy fields. Others use it as an essential oil and in their body lotions, scrubs, soaps, and more.

Is Palo Santo Toxic?

The wood is not completely toxic for your pooch; at least, there is not enough proof that it is. However, there is no definite proof that it is not toxic. It is best not to take that risk and endanger your canine friend.

If you choose to use Palo Santo around your pup, you must be careful and limit its use, especially if you keep any Palo Santo wood, oil, or other forms. Your dog might accidentally inhale or eat it, risking its life.

Eating Palo Santo is dangerous for dogs, and you must avoid it at all costs. The wood swells when it gets wet inside your dog’s stomach. Consequently, it can cause intestinal blockage that can lead to death if your pup doesn’t get treated quickly.

Burning the wood is also unsafe as it can cause breathing difficulties or allergic reactions, especially for dogs with breathing or lung problems.

If you are unsure whether your dog will be affected by Palo Santo, consult your vet. They will have more information on what your dog can stand and prevent you from making a grave mistake.

Palo Santo Essential Oil

Palo Santo essential oil might benefit you, but you should not have it near your dog. The oil can cause chemical burns when it touches your furry friend’s skin.

Generally, it is important not to put it on or anywhere near your dog if you don’t know whether it is toxic to him or not.

What to Do if Your Dog Inhales Palo Santo?


Because of their curious nature, dogs love searching for things in places where you have hidden them. If your dog finds Palos Santo or anything containing it, watch out for any symptoms of a violent reaction and call the veterinarian if any come up.

The symptoms can include:

  • Lack of energy
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lack of interest in their usual activities
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea

You can take control of your dog’s recovery by giving them water and helping them calm down. Water is necessary for preventing dehydration.

You can also collect vomit or diarrhea samples to help the vet identify the problem. Moreover, let them know what happened and any reactions you saw that can help them diagnose the issue.

Your vet might also have to run tests to determine what is wrong and give proper treatment.

Is Palo Santo Psychoactive?

The holy wood is psychoactive and is also an aphrodisiac, an analgesic, and diuretic properties. Its psychoactive properties are used during meditation and prayer and to create positive energy.

Some believe that Palo Santo can cause an improvement in energy for dogs. It especially comes in handy in calming down overexcited dogs. This is yet to be scientifically proven, but those who have used it swear it works.

Nonetheless, if you plan to use it for this purpose, it is important to put the wood a significant distance away from your furry friend to prevent the smoke or oil from causing any adverse reactions.

Palo Santo Essential Oil Alternatives

If you are spiritual and want to use some essential oils around your dog, it is advisable to use the ones that are safe for them. The best essential oils to use are pure essential oils, as they have numerous medicinal qualities and health benefits for you and your dog.

Remember, dogs have more sensitive noses. Thus, you might need to dilute the essential oils to avoid irritating their noses. Also, do not put any essential oil on your dog’s coat directly or let them ingest it unless your vet approves it.

With all the warnings out of the way, let us look at the safest essential oils to use around your dog.

Chamomile Oil

Dogs can easily get irritated and can get frustrated or overly excited. You can give them some chamomile oil to help them relax. A little bit of it can help relieve their stress and help with upset stomachs. The oil can also help fearful or shy pups relax and socialize better.

Lavender Oil

Lavender oil is also another alternative for a stressed or frustrated dog. It is a good remedy for car sickness and anxiety. Apply a bit of the oil to their ear for the best results. Gently massage the oil to help it spread and activate faster; using a light hand when massaging the oil is necessary as it prevents irritation in the area.

Applying a large amount of lavender essential oil can irritate your pup’s skin and cause chemical burns.

Peppermint Oil

Fall and winter can be stressful for dogs with seasonal allergies. When these seasons come, get some peppermint oil. You can use it in small amounts and distribute it using a diffuser. This essential oil helps support and clear respiratory systems; it can help your dog breathe better. The oil is also good at relieving pains and aches in joints.

However, don’t let your dog get close to it, and be careful to ensure they do not ingest it. It is toxic when ingested and can wreak havoc in their system.

Related: Can Dogs Eat Peppermint?

Ginger Oil

The oil is quite effective in dogs, helping to soothe their stomach and clear their respiratory tracts. It can help dogs with digestive problems get some relief and help those with breathing problems breathe easier.

The oil is also good for dogs with joint pain as it can help relieve the pain and relax them a little.

Related: Can Dogs Eat Ginger?

Frankincense Oil

Frankincense oil is the solution if you want to improve your dog’s cell immunity and health. Its use dates far back in history and is useful to this day.

The oil is also great for dogs who don’t socialize or mingle well with others, especially in daycare or the doggie park. It helps them feel more at ease.

Moreover, it offers much-needed support to your dog’s digestive tract if they have an upset stomach.

Myrrh Oil

Frankincense and myrrh have been used together for centuries, and myrrh oil holds its own weight. It is helpful for dogs with skin irritations and has astringent and antiseptic properties, which are good as a cleanser. It can help clear up irritation patches for dogs with skin problems.

Related: What Essential Oils are Bad for Dogs?

Final Thoughts

You might love using Palo Santo in your house, but you should avoid using it when your dog is around. The smoke from the wood or its essential oil can harm your dog.

You should also ensure they don’t eat it, especially the wood, as it can lead to intestinal blockage. Please keep it away from your dog at all costs.

If your dog comes into contact with the wood, especially if they inhale it directly or eat some of it, rush them to the vet. On the way, observe their reactions and collect any samples to help with diagnosis and treatment.

To prevent such occurrences, stick to dog-friendly essential oils.

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