Herbs are very beneficial for your dog’s overall health and skin.

A holistic approach rarely causes side effects. My German Shepherd, Tank, was diagnosed with chronic arthritis in his spine. He is a tough dog, but I could tell the pain was getting to him.  The vet prescribed Tramadol once a day, more if needed.

Tank 11yrs old
Tank 11yrs old

The first time I gave it to him, you could tell he had been given a drug. He went into a very sedated state, was extremely thirsty and panted a lot. After the first dose, he would not eat his food, even if I had crushed up one of the pills in it. I began to search for alternatives.

Humans have used herbal remedies for centuries for everything from arthritis pain, to respiratory ailments, to fungal infections, just to name a few. Why wouldn’t they benefit our pets health as well? My opinion is they can and they do benefit the pet’s overall health and well being.  Natural herbs boost a dog’s immune systems, they can improve a dog’s hair and skin, circulatory system and brain function.

Herbs that I have used and have benefited my dog:

Chamomile:  Soothing, non irritating. Compounds in Chamomile have shown to enhance skin healing and prevent infection.   Soaking you dog in a bath of Chamomile flowers or essential oil helps sooth dry flaky skin.

Devil’s Claw: Anti-inflammatory. Devil’s Claw has been used to treat fibromyalgia and back pain.  I give my dog a pinch or two of Devil’s Claw dried herb in his food, because of the chronic arthritis.  I can tell the difference in his overall agility.

Gotu Kola:  Known has the Healing Herb.  Gotu Kola is a wonderful, mildly sedative, restorative herb.  Read more about this must have natural herb here.

Herbal Oil Infusion
Solar Infused Rosemary

Rosemary:   Antiseptic – I have used fresh Rosemary sprigs, solar infused with organic olive oil.

Combing it through is hair and also massaging in itchy scale patches.  It really improved Tank’s skin infection. He is much happier and less itchy!  If you dog’s condition is chronic, you will want to do this every other day or so.  Keep removing the flakes with a fine tooth comb.  It really does helps their skin and feels great.

 

 

 

Tea Tree Oil:   A natural curative essential oil, tea tree oil is highly effective in treating extreme cases of fungal/yeast infections. Note: ALWAYS DILUTE TEA TREE OIL BEFORE APPLYING TO YOUR DOG!  A one part oil to three parts carrier oil such as grape seed oil, olive oil or sunflower oil.

Wormwood:  (Artemisia Absinthum) – A natural pet and livestock de-wormer, used for centuries.  Wormwood is very powerful to rid your pet of ring worms and round worms.  However, Wormwood can be toxic. It contains volatile oils, bitters principals and tannins. ONLY USE IN SMALL DOSES.  Prepare Wormwood, just has you would tea.  Steep leaves.  Add 1-2 teaspoons of the tea to your pets water or food. You can also use the dried herb finely chopped and added sparingly in pets food or treat.  Only use Wormwood  for 2-3 days.  The parasites will be expelled during bowel movement.  Do not use more than recommended time, as it can cause liver and kidney damage.  DO NOT USE WITH PREGNANT OR LACTATING ANIMALS. 

Note:  Wormwood is very easily grown in a container and a very cost effective remedy, however, I must stress caution when using the internally.  Wormwood is also excellent for getting rid of flies and moths.  Egyptians would hand bunches of cut, fresh wormwood around door frames, to deter pests from entering.  I have used Wormwood in this way and it does seem to work.

Wormwood Plant
Wormwood Plant

A very interesting article I ran across regarding Wormwood and cancer in dogs can be found here.  Check out the article and let me know your thoughts.

I am sure more research is need, but this would provide a very environmentally friendly and very cost effective treatment.

Note:  Some of these herbs are used in conjunction with other herbs. You should always consult with a trusted veterinarian for proper dosage, when in doubt. Always use herbs in moderation and do your research.

Remember, statements issued on Herbs for Living Life are my own experiences and opinions. The above herbs are ones I have tried myself and also given to my dog. I can only attest to his improvements and benefits.

As with people, all dogs are different. Consult with a holistic veterinarian if in doubt or have questions regarding your dogs health and whether herbs could be beneficial in their health regimen.