During the holidays, we tend to allow ourselves a few more treats than usual. Who doesn’t love a hot chocolate or a warm chocolate chip cookie or Gramma’s famous cheesecake? While it’s okay for us to indulge a little here and there, it’s important not to be tempted to allow our four-legged friends to join in on the fun. What can bring a full belly and a smile to us can actually be quite dangerous to them.
Just like children, our four-legged friends can have a laundry list of ailments as they grow up. But not everything needs a medication or a costly trip to the vet. In most cases, a natural remedy can do just the trick.
I always encourage you, if in doubt, to call the vet. You always want to keep them in the loop with what’s going on with your pet. Once you’ve ensured there is nothing life threatening or of major concern going on, there is often a natural treatment to help alleviate their symptoms. Here is a list of common minor ailments and natural remedies for dogs.
The hot and humid summer weather can often bring with it thunderstorms. While no big deal for you, thunderstorms can seem like the end of the world to your dog. Trembling and drooling in some corner of the house, unsure if they will survive, thunder can cause even the bravest of dogs a great deal of fear and stress.
Thunderstorm phobia is much more common in adult dogs than in puppies. Usually, this fear develops around 3 or 4 years old. Symptoms include trembling/shaking, pacing, sweating through paws, drooling, panting, accidents in the house, barking/whining, and trying to “escape”.
1. Watch Your Step
Spring is almost here, folks! The air is starting to warm, the birds are beginning to chirp and the days are getting longer. While making it through the winter is something worth celebrating, the warmer weather brings about it’s own challenges. One of them being the return of fleas for your dog or cat.
Controlling fleas is important for your pet’s health. If you have dogs or cats, then you know how challenging this can be. But turning to potentially poisonous collars or drops is not the answer. There are simple, natural remedies that can help keep fleas at bay without compromising your pet’s health.
The evolution of the canine diet has changed dramatically over the years. From eating garbage and leftovers to eating the latest and greatest overpriced diet trends, dog nutrition has come a long way. As is the current trend in human dieting, dog food is also finally making its way back to its roots- unprocessed, real, whole food.
After countless pet food recalls bringing to light what was really in those processed commercial foods, pet owners are finally questioning what they should be feeding their dogs. Why were we feeding our canine companions a diet of over 60% carbohydrates sourced from corn? Was it always that way?
Traveling can be a stressful thing. There’s the expense, the planning, getting the time off of work, rushing to catch a flight or sitting in traffic on the drive. Add to that a pet coming along for the journey and things just got a whole lot more complicated.
Many dogs suffer from itchy skin, whether it be year round or seasonally. It can be very uncomfortable for your pet and the scratching and biting can lead to sores and skin infections. This irritation is often caused by a sensitivity or allergy to something environmental, in their food, or a chemical they are being exposed to.
Before I started cooking my own dog food (a recipe provided by my vet), one of our dogs was so chronically itchy that we had to put him in a cone for weeks on end to stop him from gnawing his skin raw. It was so sad. By feeding him a healthy, natural meal chalk full of healthy fats and essential nutrients, we were able to alleviate the problem altogether.
Itchy, irritated skin can be caused by a number of things in your pets. Bug bites and flea bites can cause random itching episodes, but when it becomes a chronic or persistent seasonal issue, it is likely a food or environmental trigger to blame. Your dog’s skin functions as a protective barrier against these triggers. When this is weakened, your pet becomes more susceptible to allergies and skin irritants.
Essential oils can help boost your dog’s immune system, calm itchy, irritated skin, reduce anxiety and much, much more. It is a very safe, natural and simple way to keep your pet happy and healthy over the years.
Introducing Essential Oils to Your Dog
We’ve all likely smelled at least a couple different essential oils over time. You’ve probably enjoyed the fragrant, floral smell of lavender or the purifying and potent scent of peppermint. Dogs have a very keen sense of smell, so these sometimes strong scents can be overwhelming at first. It is very important to slowly and gently introduce essential oils to your dog at their comfort level.
Dogs can pick up a scent from a good distance, so there is no need to come barreling in towards their face with an entire bottle of essential oil. I remember the first time I came near my dog with lavender in hopes of reducing his anxiety. I just walked right up with the open bottle and headed straight for his nose. He immediately reacted, tucking his ears behind his head and getting very nervous.
“What was wrong? Who doesn’t love lavender?”, I thought. But the smell was simply too much for him. Then, I learned the right way to respectfully introduce the oils to my dogs and, over time, I slowly warmed him up to it until he was totally comfortable and now he loves it!
Our pets are like part of the family, but should you feed them that way? We’ve all felt the stares and the longing looks from our cats and dogs as we prepare a delicious meal for ourselves. They’re just so cute! Just one little scrap won’t hurt, right?
In some cases, wrong! While our pets may feel like just another member of the family, their digestive systems are very much unique to them. They cannot tolerate certain foods that would otherwise be seen as healthy foods for humans.