I have followed Dr. Shultz's research for about three years now and it totally changed the way I have my pets vaccinated. I have a holistic vet and I am not encouraged to over vaccinate my dogs. The only vaccination that is required by most states is rabies. Many states will accept a titer if the level of antibodies in the animals body meets their requirements. We have rights as pet owners and you should do research before having your pets vaccinated annually. Check out the immunity time for the vaccinations in this article. I have other articles on vaccinations on my blog.
Are you and your vet at odds about how often your dog should be vaccinated for the core vaccines? We’re here to help.
By Dogs Naturally Magazine in Vaccine Articles and News
First, it is important to understand that the core vaccines are not required by law – only rabies can be. Nobody can force you to vaccinate your dog with any other vaccine. This is a decision best left up to you and your vet. Before that decision is made however, make certain that you are both aware of the duration of immunity of those vaccines and the potentially lethal consequences of giving just one vaccine too many.
More is not better
When it comes to immunity and duration of immunity for vaccines, there is one clear expert. Dr Ronald D Schultz is one of perhaps three or four researchers doing challenge studies on veterinary vaccines – and he has been doing these studies for 40 years. It is Dr Schultz’s work that prompted the AAHA and AVMA to re-evaluate vaccine schedules. In 2003, The American Animal Hospital Association Canine Vaccine Taskforce warned vets in JAAHA (39 March/April 2003) that ‘Misunderstanding, misinformation and the conservative nature of our profession have largely slowed adoption of protocols advocating decreased frequency of vaccination’; ‘Immunological memory provides durations of immunity for core infectious diseases that far exceed the traditional recommendations for annual vaccination.’
‘This is supported by a growing body of veterinary information as well-developed epidemiological vigilance in human medicine that indicates immunity induced by vaccination is extremely long lasting and, in most cases, lifelong.’
“The recommendation for annual re-vaccination is a practice that was officially started in 1978.” says Dr Schultz. “This recommendation was made without any scientific validation of the need to booster immunity so frequently. In fact the presence of good humoral antibody levels blocks the anamnestic response to vaccine boosters just as maternal antibody blocks the response in some young animals.”
He adds: “The patient receives no benefit and may be placed at serious risk when an unnecessary vaccine is given. Few or no scientific studies have demonstrated a need for cats or dogs to be revaccinated. Annual vaccination for diseases caused by CDV, CPV2, FPLP and FeLV has not been shown to provide a level of immunity any different from the immunity in an animal vaccinated and immunized at an early age and challenged years later. We have found that annual revaccination with the vaccines that provide long-term immunity provides no demonstrable benefit.”
Below is the result of duration of immunity testing on over 1,000 dogs. Both challenge (exposure to the real virus) and serology (antibody titer results) are shown below:
Table 1: Minimum Duration of Immunity for Canine Vaccines
Minimum Duration of Immunity
Methods Used to Determine Immunity
Canine Distemper Virus (CDV)
7 yrs / 15 yrs
challenge / serology
5 yrs / 9 yrs
challenge / serology
Canine Adenovirus-2 (CAV-2)
7 yrs / 9 yrs
challenge-CAV-1 / serology
Canine Parvovirus-2 (CAV-2)
challenge / serology
It is important to note that this is the MINIMUM duration of immunity. These ceilings reflect not the duration of immunity, rather the duration of the studies.
Dr Schultz explains “It is important to understand that these are minimum DOI’s and longer studies have not been done with certain of the above products. It is possible that some or all of these products will provide lifelong immunity.”
Dr Schultz has seen these results repeated over the years. In 2010, he published the following with newer generation, recombinant vaccines. It is important to note that not only did the vaccines provide protection for a minimum of 4 to 5 years, it did so in 100% of the dogs tested.
Why is it important to understand Dr Schultz’s work? Because vaccines can create very real health problems in dogs. It is important that vaccines are only given when necessary because every vaccine has the potential to kill the patient or create debilitating chronic diseases including cancer and allergies.
Below is a list of potential adverse vaccine reactions, according to Dr Schultz:
· Hair loss, hair color change at injection site
· Refusal to eat
· Oral ulcers
· Behavioral changes
· Weight loss (Cachexia)
· Reduced milk production
· Facial edema
· Respiratory disease
· Allergic uveitis (Blue Eye)
Severe Reactions triggered by Vaccines:
· Vaccine injection site sarcomas
· Arthritis, polyarthritis
· HOD hypertrophy osteodystrophy
· Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia
· Immune Mediated Thrombocytopenia (IMTP)
· Hemolytic disease of the newborn (Neonatal Isoerythrolysis)
· Disease or enhanced disease which with the vaccine was designed to prevent
· Post vaccinal encephalitis or polyneuritis
· Abortion, congenital anomalies, embryonic/fetal death, failure to conceive
Dr Schultz summarizes his 40 years of research with the following:
“Only one dose of the modified-live canine ‘core’ vaccine (against CDV, CAV-2 and CPV-2) or modified-live feline ‘core’ vaccine (against FPV, FCV and FHV), when administered at 16 weeks or older, will provide long lasting (many years to a lifetime) immunity in a very high percentage of animals.”
We understand vets are frightened because they have seen animals die and suffer from preventable disease. Vaccine-induced diseases are also deadly and they are also preventable. Our companion animals rely on vets to make the right decisions when it comes to vaccines. We are begging vets to stand up and take notice – our pets’ lives depend on it.
Honey, bee pollen, beeswax, propolis . . . all bee products have special gifts for dogs, especially dogs with allergies
Photo by Joel Hollenberg.
Honey, bee pollen, beeswax, propolis . . . all bee products have special gifts for dogs, especially dogs with allergies
By CJ Puotinen
Bees may sting, but they create some of the world’s most valuable, versatile products. Honey, bee pollen, royal jelly, beeswax, propolis, and even the venom from bee stings are all touted for their human health benefits – and many experts say that dogs derive the same advantages.
Feeding honey to dogs is nothing new. Juliette de Bairacli Levy, whose Natural Rearing philosophy has offered alternatives to conventional treatment for over 60 years recommends honey in all of her animal care books.
New Jersey beekeeper Joe Dallon, who uses organic methods and feeds essential oils to his bees, introduces Chloe, the author’s Lab, to honey straight from the hive. Like most dogs, she loves the taste.
“I believe I could not successfully rear domestic dogs without this remarkable antiseptic food,” she says in The Complete Herbal Handbook for the Dog and Cat. She adds that while honey is not a normal item of diet for carnivores, lions in the wild enjoy honey and it is considered a staple food of the omnivorous bear.
“Honey is the greatest of the natural energizers,” Levy writes, “a nerve tonic and a supreme heart tonic . . . Predigested by its makers, the bees, it is absorbed immediately into the bloodstream of the consumer. A diet of only milk and honey can sustain life for months in humans and animals. It has been well and longtime proved that honey is also highly medicinal and will inhibit growth of harmful bacteria in the entire digestive tract and destroy those of a toxic nature.”
Levy recommends fasting animals who are ill to let their digestive organs rest and the body to heal quickly. In addition to water, the only food she recommends for fasting animals is honey.
An invert sugar, honey contains mostly glucose and fructose, which are monosaccharides or simple sugars. Monosaccharides are more easily assimilated than the disaccharides and polysaccharides found in table sugar, milk, grains, legumes, and starchy vegetables. A tablespoon of honey supplies 63 calories. Honey does not require refrigeration but keeps best in tightly sealed containers stored away from heat and light. Honey thickens when refrigerated.
Depending on the flowers harvested by the bees, honey is light or dark in color, and its flavors vary from delicate to complex. Raw honey contains vitamins A, B-complex, C, D, E, and K, plus calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, silicon, sulfur, potassium, manganese, copper, and iodine, with darker varieties such as buckwheat containing higher mineral levels. Vitamin C levels vary; some honey contains up to 300 milligrams of vitamin C per 100 grams (about 3½ ounces or 7 tablespoons).
Honey has been a medicine as well as a food for millennia. Ancient Greek, Assyrian, Chinese, and Roman physicians routinely prescribed it for health and longevity and for conditions such as indigestion, diarrhea, fevers, coughs, colds, flu, asthma, allergies, and ulcers, and as a revitalizing food for athletes, soldiers, and those recovering from illness or injury. Honey is said to increase the absorption of calcium consumed at the same time, help treat or prevent anemia, reduce arthritis pain, and work as a gentle laxative to help prevent constipation. It was also applied topically to treat open wounds, burns, cuts, abrasions, and skin infections.
Honey for dogs
Most dogs love the taste of honey, so it’s usually easy to feed. Some dogs eat it right off the spoon, some get it in their dinner, and quite a few enjoy their daily honey on toast with butter. In Denison, Texas, 50 miles north of Dallas, beekeeper and companion dog trainer Michele Crouse considers honey the best medicine for her dogs Bonnie, a four-year-old Staffordshire Terrier, and Cracker, a five-year-old yellow Labrador Retriever.
“Bonnie has always had a hard time with allergies,” Crouse says. “Her symptoms used to be worst in the spring and early summer, but they continued through the fall ragweed season. She rubbed her face, licked herself, especially on her feet and the inside of her thighs, and scratched on her stomach like crazy, creating dime-sized sores. She itched so much that the vet prescribed Benadryl and prednisone.”
To prevent these attacks, Crouse feeds her dogs a tablespoon of honey twice a day. “I mix it with their food or feed it directly,” she says. “Sometimes I’ll give them berries as a snack, with the honey mixed in. Both Bonnie and Cracker love the taste. Otis, our mixed-breed, isn’t interested in honey or anything sweet. Fortunately, he doesn’t have allergy symptoms.”
Crouse uses raw honey which she strains through a single filter to remove debris. “Otherwise,” she says, “it’s straight out of the hive.”
As long as Bonnie receives her daily honey, she remains free of allergy symptoms. “But if I forget for a week or so,” says Crouse, “the symptoms come right back. I know several other dogs who have had the same response. They react to seasonal allergens until their owners put them on honey, and then they’re fine.”
Crouse agrees with beekeepers and health experts who have observed that local raw honey works best on allergy symptoms. “It makes sense,” she explains. “When you eat the honey, you ingest minute amounts of local pollen, and after your body adjusts so that it doesn’t react to the pollen, you can be exposed to larger amounts, such as when plants or trees are in bloom, without being affected.”
Savannah’s cyst healed quickly with topical honey.
In addition to using honey as a food, Crouse washes her dogs with it. “I start with a clear, natural shampoo base from an organic supplier,” she says, “and mix it with an equal amount of honey to which I’ve added aloe vera and essential oils like lemon grass, orange, lemon, lavender, tea tree, citronella, and the Asian herb May Chang (Litsea cubeba). All of these plants have disinfecting, deodorizing, or insect-repelling properties. The essential oils make up about 5 percent of the formula, so it’s safe for adult dogs and older puppies. To dilute the shampoo and make it easier to use, I add about 25 percent water.”
Crouse says that the resulting shampoo doesn’t lather much, but it cleans the dog well and soothes the skin. “I let it stand for a minute or so, rinse it off, reapply, and then give a final rinse. I board dogs, and if a visiting dog is scratching and itching, I’ll give him a bath in honey shampoo, and that always helps.” In Jacksonville, Oregon, Natural Rearing consultant Marina Zacharias feeds her dogs honey and applies it topically to cuts and wounds.
“The high sugar content of honey is one of the factors that makes it such an excellent infection fighter and wound healer,” says Zacharias. “Glucose oxidase, an enzyme in honey, produces hydrogen peroxide, which helps kill harmful bacteria. In addition, there are yet-unidentified substances which bees collect from flowers that give their honey antibacterial properties. For best results, it’s important to use raw honey that hasn’t had its effectiveness destroyed by processing.”
Clinical trials of burn and injury patients show that the application of honey as a wound dressing rapidly clears infection, inflammation, swelling, pain, and odor while speeding the sloughing off of necrotic tissue (dead skin) and the growth of new skin cells. It remains moist, seals wounds – including skin grafts – and protects them from exposure to air, absorbs pus, reduces scarring, and prevents wounds from sticking to bandages. Unlike other topical antiseptics, honey prevents microbial growth without causing tissue damage.
Raw honey eventually crystallizes or solidifies, making it difficult to apply. In addition, honey crystals can feel sharp on tender or inflamed skin. For best results, apply soft or liquid honey. To liquify crystallized honey, stand the jar in hot water until it can be stirred or poured. Microwaving is not recommended because in addition to destroying enzymes and other nutrients, heating honey in a microwave increases its hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) content, which adversely affects its flavor.
In addition to applying honey to wounds, Zacharias has successfully treated wart-like growths with honey. “When honey is applied daily, they eventually soften and disappear,” she says. “Juliette recommends honey as a treatment for burns. I have personally seen this work, and the healing is remarkable. In one case, a young mixed-breed toy dog tripped his owner and the scalding hot coffee she was carrying burned his back. The skin did not blister but it was very painful and angry looking. Thanks to honey, the dog healed very well, and his hair grew back beautifully.”
The procedure Zacharias recommends is to wash the burned area with vinegar and apply honey thickly every 10 minutes until the pain subsides, then apply light bandages over the area. “Unfortunately, the hair will need to be clipped away,” she says, “and if the dog wants to bother the bandage, you will need to use an Elizabethan or cervical collar.”
On other wounds, Zacharias says, you can apply honey directly without bandaging. If the dog wants to lick it off, try distracting him for 20 minutes or so and give the honey time to be absorbed by the skin. You can reapply it this way three or four times a day.
“Honey applied twice a day healed an open cyst that wouldn’t close in one of my older Basset Hounds, Savannah. As soon as I started applying honey, her skin closed over the wound, it healed fast, and we avoided surgery.”
Honey and herbs
Most dogs enjoy the taste of honey, which simplifies the administration of fresh or dried medicinal herbs. “Canine Allergies and Your Dog’s Health” (May 2007) described how the herb cleavers (Galium aparine) helped cured a dog’s allergy-related sores on its legs. Several readers who began feeding their dogs cleavers tea reported that the strategy worked for them as well. Brewing tea is one way to add cleavers to your dog’s diet, but another is to make an herbal honey.
Start by coarsely chopping enough fresh lemon balm, thyme, sage, oregano, lavender, basil, or other herbs to loosely fill a glass jar. Alternatively, fill the jar half full with loosely packed dried herbs. Fill the jar with honey, covering the herbs. If the honey is too thick to pour easily, warm it by placing the honey jar in hot water or heat the honey gently in a saucepan or double boiler just until it is liquid.
I use essential oils to make the honey for they are easier to add and much more powerful so you only need to use a few drops of the oils. By the way lemon balm is melissa essential oil. Make sure you use Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils for they can be taken internally. Most less expensive essential oils are not certified pure and are only for external use. You don’t have to let the honey mixture set or filter it because the oils mix in easily and don’t leave any residue to filter out. Melissa Essential Oil is an expensive oil but it is very effective for use with dogs.
Seal the jar of herbs and honey and leave it in a warm location, such as a sunny window, for at least two weeks. For a double-strength herbal honey, wait a month or more, then fill another glass jar with herbs, pour the contents of the first jar into the second jar, and let the honey stand another month. If you’re in a hurry, heat the honey until it’s almost boiling and the pour it over the herbs. The honey won’t be raw any more, but it will still contain significant healing properties, and it can be strained and used the same day.
Before using herbal honey, filter it through cheesecloth or a strainer to remove plant material and store it at room temperature or in the refrigerator. Add the medicated honey to your dog’s food. In addition, keep a small jar of honey (herbal or plain) in your first-aid kit or backpack for use in emergencies.
Honey infused with the herbs mentioned above is an effective dressing for cuts, surgical wounds, burns, lick granulomas, abrasions, hot spots, and infected wounds. It can be given orally to prevent infection from viruses or bacteria, soothe a sore throat, help an anxious dog relax, improve sleep, and speed recovery from illness. Added to food, herbal honey helps reduce gas and other symptoms of indigestion.
Another way to feed herbs is to mix them with thick raw honey (refrigerate honey for a thicker consistency if necessary) and shape it into small balls that are easy for the dog to swallow. Use the same technique you would to pill a dog.
All honey, especially organic raw honey, has medicinal benefits, but the honey best known for its antimicrobial properties is manuka honey from New Zealand. More than 20 years of research have shown it to naturally destroy harmful bacteria such as Staphaureus and Streptococcus (including drug-resistant strains); Helicobacter pylori bacteria associated with stomach ulcers; vancomycin-resistant Enterococci; and Pseudomonas. The veterinary use of manuka honey includes its application as a dressing for burns, amputations, and wounds, and its internal use for gastrointestinal and digestive problems.
Can honey be given to dogs with diabetes? Experts disagree as to whether honey has all of white sugar’s harmful effects or has a slower blood sugar absorption rate, putting it lower on the glycemic index and making it less likely to disrupt the patient’s blood sugar levels. Some tests have shown honey to cause a significantly lower rise in blood sugar, but results vary according to the type of honey used. Discuss this with your holistic veterinarian.
Also, consider feeding dark raw local honey or raw organic honey. The safest way to feed a therapeutic tablespoon once or twice a day to dogs with diabetes is to start with smaller amounts and always feed it in combination with fats, which by itself lowers a food’s glycemic index. Coconut oil and butter are excellent honey partners. Observe your dog’s reaction before increasing the amount and discontinue use if he displays any adverse symptoms.
As they collect nectar from flower blossoms, bees also gather pollen, a high-protein food, to carry back to the hive. While doing so, they spread pollen from flower to flower, fertilizing plants so that they produce berries, fruits, nuts, and vegetables. More than 100 crops grown in the US are pollinated by honeybees.
Bee pollen, which is collected from hives and sold as a health supplement, has long been prized for its proteins, amino acids, vitamins, enzymes, and other nutrients. Approximately half of its protein is made up of free-form amino acids, which require no digestion; they are immediately absorbed and utilized by the body. It is unusually high in the bioflavonoid rutin, which strengthens capillaries, protects against free radical damage and has anti-inflammatory effects.
Proponents claim that bee pollen improves energy, endurance, and vitality, speeds recovery from illness or injury, helps convalescents gain weight, helps the overweight lose weight, reduces cravings and addictions, fights infectious diseases, boosts immunity, improves intestinal function, increases fertility, and helps prevent cancer.
Bee pollen is also a widely used remedy for hay fever and allergies. As with raw honey, which contains small amounts of bee pollen, it is said to be most effective when derived from local hives and taken for several weeks prior to allergy season, then continued through the year. This desensitization process begins with tiny amounts, such as a single pollen grain or pellet, and continues in gradually increasing amounts until the maintenance dose, as much as a tablespoon per day for human adults, is reached.
Some canine athletes are fed bee pollen to improve their strength and stamina; some owners give it to their dogs as an all-purpose supplement or to prevent allergy symptoms. For best results, avoid inexpensive imported heat-processed pollen in favor of raw, unprocessed pollen from local beekeepers. Fresh bee pollen is slightly moist and requires refrigeration.
Like people, dogs can have allergic reactions to bee pollen, including wheezing, breathing problems, and even anaphylactic shock. Start with a single grain of bee pollen and carefully check your dog’s response. If he shows no symptoms of discomfort, give two grains the next day, and slowly increase the amount over several weeks to a maintenance dose of 1 teaspoon per 30 pounds of body weight per day, mixed with food. Bee pollen is often blended with honey.
To appreciate the nutritional value of royal jelly – for bees, at least – consider that all queen bees begin life as worker bees. It is only because they are fed royal jelly and nothing else that they grow larger than worker bees and live far longer. While the average worker bee lives for five to six weeks during summer, queens live for three to six years, laying 2,000 eggs per day.
The queen bee’s longevity and fertility gave rise to royal jelly’s reputation as a miraculous rejuvenator, fountain of youth, and energy enhancer. Modern researchers have substantiated at least some of these claims, describing royal jelly as a metabolic catalyst, a substance that combats fatigue, increases energy, and supports the adrenal glands. Some of royal jelly’s components are natural antidepressants.
Royal Jelly has become a popular supplement for humans and for some canine athletes and breeding dogs. Organic royal jelly is available in natural foods markets. Highly perishable, it requires refrigeration. Most labels recommend taking small amounts, such as ¼ to ½ teaspoon once or twice per day between meals on an empty stomach. Adjust the label dose for your dog’s weight, dividing it in half for dogs weighing 60 to 80 pounds.
Because of its slightly sharp, bitter, biting taste, dogs may not care for royal jelly. Blends of royal jelly and honey, which are also popular, may be more to their liking. Try mixing your own by blending 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) organic royal jelly with 6 ounces (¾ cup) of local raw honey. Keep refrigerated. Give your dog ½ to 1 teaspoon of this blend twice per day, morning and night.
Some manufacturers of human and canine grooming products add royal jelly to their shampoos and conditioners, claiming that it enhances hair color and increases volume. Those claims have not been scientifically tested, but royal jelly is certainly a luxury ingredient.
Propolis from Bees
By CJ Puotinen
Few substances are as antiseptic as propolis, a sticky, resinous material also known as “bee glue,” which is gathered from the buds, bark, and leaves of deciduous trees. Bees seal cracks and holes in their hives with propolis to prevent the entrance of intruders and to disinfect or sterilize bees brushing against it. When a mouse or other invader is stung to death in the hive, bees seal the body in propolis, preserving it while keeping the inside of the hive sanitary.
Although propolis has been used for millennia to fight infection and improve health, it is unfamiliar to most Americans. However, it’s gaining popularity as a natural antibiotic that doesn’t disrupt beneficial bacteria or cause other side effects. Propolis, which is rich in bioflavonoids, is effective against viruses, harmful bacteria, yeasts, and fungi. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, helps prevent allergies, and speeds the healing of ulcers and skin problems such as acne, eczema, wounds, cuts, and burns.
The only down side of propolis, especially when it comes to treating dogs, is its awful taste. Freeze-dried propolis is sold in capsules, which can be hidden in food, and small amounts of propolis tincture (liquid extract) can be placed in empty two-part gel caps, which are sold in health food stores, just before using.
Propolis tincture can help protect dogs from canine flu, kennel cough, and other infectious illnesses. It can be applied to cuts, wounds, burns, bites, stings, hot spots, and lick granulomas (its bitter taste helps deter licking). However, its stickiness can complicate topical application. Mix propolis with a small amount of olive oil to create a less sticky disinfecting salve. Mix it with honey to help heal gum disorders.
Bees produce wax to construct the combs that store honey. Beeswax contains more than 300 different chemicals. It’s best known for its use in candles and as an ingredient in cosmetics, floor wax, furniture polish, and salves.
The makers of herbal salves often use beeswax as a thickener. Michele Crouse makes body bars by combining beeswax from her hives with coconut oil, avocado oil, cocoa butter, and mango butter. “They’re the consistency of a ChapStick,” she says, “and they do a great job of healing sores, moisturizing dry skin, and soothing cracked paw pads.”
Some people pay to get stung by bees or injected with bee venom in medical clinics. Apitherapy, or bee sting therapy, is common in China and gaining popularity in Europe and the US. It is said to alleviate arthritis, other symptoms of inflammation, and allergic reactions to bee stings.
Now dried bee venom is being added to some New Zealand honeys and topical creams to provide the benefits of apitherapy without the pain. The theory is that venom that is ingested or applied externally has the same health benefits as venom that’s injected.
Large-scale venom collection is made possible by a technology developed in Russia and New Zealand in which a bee venom frame is mounted on top of a hive’s honey frame. Bees receive a mild shock from the frame’s electro-stimulator and in response sting a glass collection sheet. Venom dries on the glass, which is taken to a nearby laboratory for processing. The dried venom is removed from the glass and mixed with honey or used in other bee products.
Arthritis is the human condition for which bee venom honey is said to be most effective, but bee venom honey success stories include the treatment of auto-immune disorders, shingles, tennis elbow, bursitis, lower back pain, ligament injuries, premenstrual syndrome, and other conditions. Bee venom honey is said to support the body’s natural coritsol levels, increase blood flow through affected joints, and inhibit the production of prostaglandins, which are chemicals that increase inflammation.
New Zealand honey producers have received testimonials describing dogs whose arthritis, hind end weakness, torn ligaments, and even hip dysplasia improved as a result of using bee venom honey.
Bees are in danger
For the past two decades, Juliette de Bairacli Levy has asked her followers not to use honey or other products from honeybees because these helpful insects are under so much environmental stress. Between pesticides, mite infestations, foulbrood disease, hive-damaging moths, and other problems, bee populations have dramatically fallen across North America. Now Colony Collapse Disorder is destroying entire hives. Bees look healthy one day and disappear the next, becoming too weak to return to their hives. In most cases, the victims have been raised for commercial crop pollination, given supplemental feedings containing white sugar, and exposed to chemical pesticides.
At the same time, organic beekeepers and beekeepers who feed their bees disinfecting essential oils report that their hives stay healthy even in areas where Colony Collapse Disorder has become common.
In her many years as a beekeeper, Levy prevented bee diseases by growing disinfecting herbs near her hives. “The bees themselves are natural herbalists,” she wrote, “and will gorge themselves on bitter rue or pungent lavender and rosemary. My bees enjoyed excellent health and possessed complete resistance to the many diseases afflicting the local white-sugar-fed bees.”
Local organic honey, if you can find it, can be an excellent addition to your dog’s diet and health care. A good second choice is organic honey from nearby states.
I have used herbs but I have found that the essential oils are more powerful and therefore you need to use much less . . . usually a few drops just costing pennies per drop. I have had better results using essential oils when I can substitute them for herbs. Most of the conditions below also can be treated with essential oils. Actually Boswellia tree is where Frankincense oil comes from. There are different qualities but if you use therapeutic grade essential oils they are 50 to 70% more powerful than herbs and most can be taken internally if that is the best way to use the oil. My recommendations will be italicized in the article.
Original Article written by Julia Szabo
Herbs offer cures for many common canine ailments. I've been using them for years, with the blessing of my homeopathic vet, and my dogs have all lived long and remarkably healthy lives.
Just because they're natural doesn't mean they're not powerful. Herbs are nothing to sneeze at. What may look like a mere weed or homely root can, in fact, be a very potent medicine.
Here's a list of the top ten herbs no dog lover's cupboard should be without. It's a pharmacopeia for dogs - call it a bark-acopeia!
But before you try them, ask your vet about dosages, and if any of these are contraindicated for your pet's existing medications.
What: Azadirachta indica, an extract of the Neem tree, is nature's non-toxic insecticide, plus it heals burns and soothes dry, irritated skin.
Why: Applied topically and absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream, Neem makes your dog naturally repellent to mosquitoes and fleas. Parasite preventatives work by filling your dog's blood with poison; in order to be eliminated, the pest has to take a bite out of your best friend. With Neem, Spot won't even get bitten!
Suggested Use: During the warm months (high mosquito season), bathe once weekly in TheraNeem Pet Shampoo, to which you add several drops of Neem oil; both are available at Whole Foods stores. For extra protection from within, administer Neem Plus supplements orally once daily, hidden in food.
What: Achillea millefolium - a.k.a. stanchweed, soldier's woundwort, and sanguinary - helps stop bleeding.
Why: If your dog sustains a cut or laceration, you can administer first aid by flushing the wound with povidone iodine, then treating it with yarrow.
Suggested Use: Wound Balm for Animals contains yarrow (along with echinacea and goldenseal); it speeds healing and is a first-rate addition to Fido's first-aid kit.
Helichrysum oil is excellent to help control bleeding as well and great for bruising and cleansing wounds along with other essential oils. I had many chances to use Helichrysum oil and it worked exceptionally well. I follow a holistic veterinarian who feels that Helichrysum is very effective for use with our animals. I have used many herbs before using the essential oils and I have had better results with the essential oils. They are 50-70% more powerful, therefore more effective.
What: Arnica montana, a.k.a. Leopard's Bane, has long been prized for its astonishing bruise-healing property.
Why: Has Spot sustained a bruise or muscle injury? Arnica does double duty, easing the pain and promoting healing.
Suggested Use: Arnica pellets. Administer 3 pellets 3 times daily, in the inside pocket of your dog's lower lip. It's OK if he spits it out; healing begins when the pellets make contact with the gum.
What: This effective - if highly malodorous - herb (Valeriana officinalis L.) is nature's time-trusted sedative and sleep-inducer.
Why: For dogs who experience high anxiety during thunderstorms or on the 4th of July, Valerian will put them out for several hours of stress-free slumber. It's also great for long car trips, to help Spot snooze through the ride.
Suggested Use: Valerian comes in capsules, available at any health food store. To dose your dog, you'll need to hide the capsules in a piece of meat or cheese with peanut butter on top - anything to mask that awful smell! (Editor's Note: Again, talk to your vet about dosages.)
Therapeutic grade essential oils are very effective for calming your pets for mild and more severe conditions. One of the reasons I started using essential oils for pets is because I have a dog that has major issues with fireworks and thunderstorms. I have found many oils to be effective depending on the severity of the fear. Contact Us for your individual need and recommendations.
Olive Leaf Extract
What: The extract of crushed-up olive leaves (oleuropein) is nature's antibiotic.
Why: If your dog experiences diarrhea from, say, scarfing something rancid on the sidewalk, the antifungal property of Olive Leaf will help set his digestion right.
Suggested Use: Available at health food stores, Olive Leaf capsules smell and taste exactly like olive oil (i.e. delicious), so there's no need to hide or mask them. Just sprinkle over your dog's food like a spice!
A protective blend and digestive blend are great to help support the immune system. They are also great for your human family members.
What: A flowering plant whose extract, Silymarin, is one of nature's most potent antioxidants for people and pets.
Why: Boosting and protecting the liver, milk thistle is a must if you want to extend the life of your dog. Everything passes through the liver, so it welcomes the support - and because eye and liver health are linked, milk thistle also prevents and reverses cloudy eyes (nuclear sclerosis) in dogs.
Suggested Use: Sold at health foods stores in capsule form, this herb tastes somewhat bitter; very finicky dogs will need to have it hidden in something tasty, but most dogs will eat it sprinkled over their food (cinnamon helps sweeten the deal).
Milk Thistle is great to detox the liver. I have used it for years. Milk thiste is great for humans as well as for our furry friends to build their immune system and detox the body.
What: Crataegus is a berry that's used to treat cardiac insufficiency.
Why: Strengthening the heart muscle and improving circulation, hawthorn helps stave off congestive heart failure in senior dogs (and people), and tones the tickers of younger dogs who've survived heartworm disease. Young, healthy dogs don't need it yet - wait until they're older.
Suggested Use: One capsule in your dog's food (available at health food stores); most dogs don't mind the taste.
What: The resin of the Boswellia tree has many medicinal uses.
Why: Another senior-dog staple, Boswellia reduces inflammation and improves mobility in arthritic K9s.
Suggested Use: Available in tablet form, it's called "Boswelya Plus."
Frankincense oil comes from the Boswellia tree and it is excellent to help support the immune system of your pets especially older dogs who tend to have a weakened immune system. This can cause inflammation which is the main cause of most disease. It is all excellent for skin issues and for many more uses.
What: As its name implies, the flowering plant Euphrasia officinalis has long been used to treat eye infections.
Why: If your dog comes back from the dog park or doggie daycare with goopy eyes, try eyebright first before consulting the vet; you may be able to clear up the problem yourself.
Suggested Use: Euphrasia pellets. Administer 3 pellets 3 times daily, in the inside pocket of your dog's lower lip. As with Arnica (above), it's OK if he spits it out; healing begins when the pellets make contact with the gum.
I have used Eyebright personally for dry eye and other eye issues and have had much more relief from a blend of essential oils I use. I no longer need to use any eye drops or medication. I didn’t get that relief from using Eyebright.
What: A thistle in the genus Arctium, its root has long been prized for its blood-purifying, hair-regrowing, and cancer-fighting powers.
Why: Use it regularly as a preventative, especially if you have a breed of dog that's prone to cancer (such as a Boxer).
Suggested Use: Add cooked burdock root (found in the produce section of health food stores and Asian markets) to your dog's food, or give him a piece of raw burdock to chew on, like a carrot. Or you can steep one teaspoon of burdock in a cup of hot water; let cool and pour over your dog's food.
There are essential oils that can be used for all of the herbs listed for different health conditions. The essential oils have much longer shelf life if stored in their dark glass bottles. They are much easier to administrator. Many can be applied to the animal externally by dilluting the oil or diffused. You should only used therapeutic grade essential oils. Quality essential oils test every batch of essential oils to guarantee purity of the oils oils for our safety. It is very important to only use therapeutic grade essential oils with your pets. If they aren’t pure they can have additives and other environmental impurities. Contact PWC if you would like more information on which oils to use with your pets. Because essential oils are so concentrated they are also much less expensive. With animals and humans using essential oils “less is more effective”. One drop diluted with a few drops of carrier oil is usually all that the animal needs.