As part of the 8 month herbalist course, I incorporate health for pets into the course. When I got my masters degree in herbalism, I did my thesis on herbs, nutrition and supplements for dogs.
I have worked with remedies for my dogs for many years. I learned a lot of this from hands on experience with 2 of my aging dogs back in the late 1990’s.
It is nice to be able to ease their pain with herbs.
I also learned a lot about feeding them. My 2 dogs that I have now eat a raw food diet and have done very well on that. I don’t think it is a good idea to switch a dog of any age over to raw food right away. Just like people, they need a transition time.
Older dogs are probably best just left on the diet they are used to. You can incorporate herbs into their diet to make them more comfortable. I used herbs for helping with pain issues, anxiety, and constipation for my older dogs.
Younger dogs may do well on raw, there’s many ways to go about this, but keep in mind that dogs are like people, they all have different needs with food, supplements & herbs. If you want take my 8 month distance learning herbalist course you can learn much more about this.
CANINE FORMULAS: Below are examples of more formulas just to give an idea of the scope of support that herbs can give. Herbs used are going to depend on matching the energetic needs of the dog to the right herb. I teach how to custom blend forumulas during my herbalist course.
Digestive System Support: chronic constipation, healing to digestive tract, aids digestion, stomach upset, gas . Contains: slippery elm, goldenseal, milk thistle, licorice, wormwood, peppermint, chamomile. May require fiber, probiotics, digestive enyzmes, diet changes
Immune System Support: fleas, hot spots, recurring illness, infections. Contains: garlic, echinacea, goldenseal, cleavers, yellow dock, burdock, red clover. use for 2 - 3 months
Pregnancy & Nursing Support: pregnancy tonic, helps with labor and birth, enriches and increases milk supply. Contains: nettles, oatstraw, raspberry leaf, alfalfa
Pain Support: joint pain, injuries, muscular pain, post surgery. Contains: mullein, crampbark, willow bark, ginger, lobelia, licorice, lemon balm. I used this formula for several years with my aging Schnauzer who had terrible arthritis due to injuries, it kept him comfortable & increased his lifespan.
Pre-Surgery Support: reduces risk of bleeding, boosts immune system, calming. Contains: echinacea, nettles, rescue remedy, lavender Don't use blood thinners such as willow bark or ginkgo
Senior Dog Support: for aging dogs, calming, heart support, helps brain circulation and memory. Contains hawthorn, motherwort, cayenne, lemon balm, ginkgo
Urinary Tract Support: infections, to prevent recurring infections. Contains: dandelion, nettles, echinacea, goldenseal, marshmallow, buchu
Relax 1: barking, restlessness, can't sleep, travel. Contains: hops, california poppy. Use Vibrational Essences too, these can be mixed into the same formula.
Relax 2: barking, restlessness, can't sleep, travel. Contains: lemon balm, lavender, oatstraw .Use vibrational essences too.
Respiratory System Support: cough, respiratory problems from allergies, pollutants, viruses. Contains: licorice, marshmallow, mullein, echinacea, chickweed
Antioxidant Support: protects the body from free radical damage. Contains: green tea, ginger, thyme, tumeric. Use supplements & diet changes
Heart & Circulatory Support: use for as a tonic for heart and circulation problems. Contains: hawthorn, nettles, cayenne, garlic
Yearly Cleanse: to help cleanse the liver, skin, immune system, parasites, toxicity, aggression, bad breath, bloating, skin problems. Contains: milk thistle, dandelion, cleavers, Oil of Oregano, garlic. Some dogs may need to use this for several months or longer
Spayed Female Support (people use hormone support after surgery, so I believe dogs should too, I've have really good success with these formulas). To support hormones, adrenal glands, and thyroid . Contains: licorice, wild yam, ginseng, oatstraw, nettles, vitex. Use once a week or daily until old age.
Neutered Male Support (people use hormone support after surgery, so I believe dogs should too, I've have really good success with these formulas) To support hormones, adrenal glands, and thyroid. Contains saw palmetto, licorice, damiana, ginseng. Use once a week or daily until old age.
DOSAGE & ADMINISTRATION OF FORMULAS
Formulas should be added directly to your pet's food, and stirred in well. Once a day should be fine for most formulas. If you are using the Relax Formula for helping your dog to sleep at night, you should give the formula is a very small amount of food right at bedtime.
If your dog will not eat the food with the formula in it, try offering the dosage in a small amount of tuna or sardines, these foods smell strong & will mask the smell of stronger herbs. As a last resort, you can administer the formula using the correct dosage in a plastic syringe (not the glass dropper that comes in my dropper bottles). I find this method traumatizing to the dogs, so it is better to give the formula in food when possible.
Dosages will vary with factors other than weight, so it is best to use less for a day or 2 to test your dog’s reaction to the herbs. For example, one of my dogs only seems to require 2 - 3 drops of a formula to relax him, while my other dog uses 40 drops of the pain formula daily for arthritic pain, they both weigh 25 lbs.
This is a general guideline, but remember it is best to start with a very small amount and build up from there, and make sure the remedy agrees with your dog:
100 lb. dogs = 20 - 30 drops
50 lb. dogs = 15 - 20 drops
25 lb. dogs = 5 - 15 drops
5 lb. dog = 3 - 5 drops
As I will discuss during the herbalist course, often just a few drops of an herb are needed if the correct herb is chosen.
Please contact your veterinarian for serious problems or to get a diagnosis. Any information presented here is for informational purposes only and not intended to take the place of diagnosis and treatment by a veterinarian. Please remember that dogs, like people, can have sensitivities or allergies to foods and herbal remedies, try only a small amount of a new food to make sure it agrees with your dog. These formulas are not suitable for cats!
presented here is for informational purposes only and not intended to
take the place of diagnosis and treatment by a medical practitioner.
Copyright © 2002 Dragonfly Herbals