Self selection Aromatic session

Koda the Alaskan Klee Kie                             

For those of you that do not know this breed of dog they are miniature alaskan huskies dogs.

They are really a distinct breed of their own and are very verbal and use their body language to talk. Dogs in general use their body language but these dogs are very animated with their bodies and if you are not getting the message they are trying to convey they will make a bigger point in expressing what they are trying to tell you.

I was called to a beautiful home in Elma, Washington with a fabulous layout for a backyard for the dogs. The parents of these dogs have gone beyond the scope of providing a big yard so their dogs can get a lot of exercise. One of their dogs Koda had a neck injury and they found it through having an MRI done.  Of course there were symptoms of head bobbing and limping in the foreleg.The veterinarian recommended some bodywork and physical therapy exercises for Koda and that is where I came into the picture. When I arrived at their home I was greeted with loud and continuous barking. It was non-stop for a good ten minutes. I thought it would be best to choose a place where Koda felt comfortable, like on his bed or in the room he felt most relaxed.  I felt that Koda was trying to tell me I was not wanted and that any place in the house he would rather I stayed out of. Probably the front door would have been more to his liking.

I was there to palpated all the areas on Kodas body to feel for heat, tenderness, decreased or increased  range of motion. I also wanted to see the way he walked around and trotted around.

I thought to myself before I began, that I would take out an essential oil. I only brought a few with me but thank goodness I had some Vetiver on me. I opened the bottle and put it on the ground to let him choose if he wanted to smell it or not. He did come forward and touched the bottle with his nose, did a few licks walked away for two feet and turned around to face me and layed down.

I used that quite time to talk with his mom and dad about how he got his injury and went into detail about his health history and his personality. I also noticed there were a lot of treats involved with Koda. Treats are a great reward for positive reinforcement, although Koda was great at constant positive reinforcement if you get my drift.

When I started to palpate I started from the shoulder and went very slowly trying to stay along each side of the spine and watching for tender areas that might cause aggression.  Koda did go after my hands almost the whole session and this was very challenging. I was able to palpate all of Koda, find the areas that needed work and massage as long as I could. Koda let me know when the window was up and I stopped. With animals and the work I do, the rule for me is stop when things are positive. When you come back to work again they will remember where you left off. I gave the parents home work which they are diligent about and waited to hear back from them.

To tell you the truth I did not know if I would hear back. Koda was not to happy with me coming over and directing traffic with my hands on him. I felt badly and wanted to be liked by Koda. Definitely a humbling situation. You also have in the back of your mind that if the dog was not please with my presence then the parents of the dog might not approve as well. So I always feel when it comes to being in the now with an animal and parents, to be honest and graceful with my words; and be very open to how its all going to end up.

I have also learned through the years not to take it personally. Number one, you need to go with what is best for the dog. Number two the parents of the animal really need to feel comfortable as well because you want them involved with the healing therapy process.  Part of being honest with massage and aromatic work I do is to admit my limits and refer to other professionals that might be a better match.

Five weeks later I got a call from Koda’s mom and asked if I would come back and work with Koda using my essential oils and essences. Her daughter would also be their with her dog that caused the neck injury and thought it might be a good way to see the interactions between the two dogs, plus her daughter was very interested in the aromatic work.

In this blog I do not want to go into a case study detail account of everything, I just wanted to share with you the subject of animal aromatics and the power it has.

I arrived at their home in the morning and the daughters dog greeted me barking and checking me out. Koda was in his kennel very quite and lying down. I went to sit of the couch making sure I was above Stella the female dog. Remember Stella is the visiting dog and Koda is the resident dog. Stella feels that when she comes to visit that she needs to act as the head role of the house. She has intimidated Koda to the point that even if Stella gets kenneled and Koda wants to go to another room he makes sure he passes far away from stella’s kennel and will even go in between furniture to stay in a safe zone. Stella was first to have a chance to choose essential oils, flowers elixirs and herbs. I also offered her Roman chamomile dried flowers which she like and placed them in the corner of her kennel.

The essential oil she was very positive for was vetiver (vetivera zizanoides) it is made from the roots of grass. It has a very sedative effect on the nervous system. Stella would take a sniff, back off, take another sniff and would start to roam around the room. I had her mom offer her the oil  thinking she would be more comfortable taking the oil from mom. She slowly calmed down and we were able to have her go in her kennel and bring Koda out.

We offered Koda the vetiver as well and that was a very positive reaction. I put eight bottles on the floor in hopes he would select a few more. My comfrey elixir was among them and he selected that bottle right away. I opened the bottle and put 6 drops in my hand and he lick it straight away. Koda wanted more so I gave him a few more drops for several times and he just loved it.  I went back to the vetiver and diluted it in fractionated coconut oil and used one drop of vetiver. He really loved the oil dilution and was very into licking everything off my hand.

Now that the dogs selected their plant medicine it was time to let the magic begin. Ten minutes past and the tension in the room calmed down a lot. I was able to talk with both the mother and daughter about resources, and maybe suggest some simple problem solving methods that I learned working in shelters and kennels. Within 20 minutes Koda was sitting right by my side and very quite. It was like day and night with his reaction towards me. Stella was in her kennel lying down and watching everything but after a while she placed her whole head in the chamomile dried flowers and laid there so she could smell the aroma. I made up some bottles of diluted vetiver and left my comfrey flower elixirs with them. I feel it was a great time to depart and I was so pleased to see a huge change in both animals.

I checked in the next morning to see how things progressed through the day. The parents left to run errands the rest of the day and the daughter stayed home with the dogs. Both dogs were out of the kennels and seemed to leave each other alone. Of course they were supervised the whole time. The morning I checked in with them the dogs were still doing well and everyone was in agreement that there was a big shift with the essential oils and herbs. Now the daughter is going to contact a dog trainer , behavioral specialist just to learn how to make things better when she comes to visit mom and dad with her stella. There still has to be a re-pattern of training with the dogs, but the aromatic work  lifted the negative emotional side of things so we could make a good start in repairing a healthy pack of dogs in their family.

By the way, Koda will remember me now by the aromatic work. When I come to visit him next time I will bring my oils and will massage him. The aromatic work will give me a bigger window of time to work on his muscles.

For more information or consultation with animal aromatics contact me.

Joan Sorita            425-877-4824

4 thoughts on “Self selection Aromatic session”

  • Loved learning about self selection and allowing the animal choose which essential oil has an effect on them. Looking forward to trying this out.

    • Great to hear that.
      Please send me your address and I can mail you a comfrey flower elixir as a gift for going to my blog.
      I will send some more information out soon.
      Joan Sorita

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