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Top 10 Herbs For Dogs

Herbs have been used for centuries to treat human ailments and they can also be used in the same way for our furry friends. Not only can herbs for dogs be used to treat health issues and problems, but they can also be added to your dog's food on a daily basis as part of their general health maintenance.

There are many beneficial herbs for dogs and herbal remedies that can be used but here is a list of some of the most common and easily obtained herbs. Most of them you can even easily grow yourself!

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1. Aloe Vera

The gel in the leaves can be applied topically directly to minor burns, scrapes, cuts and skin irritations. It's cooling action will ease inflamed or itchy lesions.

Taken internally it aids with gas, constipation and infections. It also has nutritive value as it contains amino acids, vitamins A, C and E, and minerals. It can help to relieve allergy symptoms.

2. Calendula Flowers

Calendula is good for healing wounds, cuts etc. as it has anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal properties. The petals can be applied directly or they can be made into an infusion or tea and used as an antiseptic wash.

Taken internally it aids in intestinal healing.

3. Chamomile

Chamomile is well known for it's relaxing and calming properties. But it can also be used to ease tummy spasms and colic. It can increase appetite and helps reduce indigestion.

Used as a tea or extract it can be used as a wash to sooth irritated skin.

4. Cinnamon

This is one of the warming herbs. It's useful for stiff, arthritic joints and has mild anti-inflammatory properties. It regulates insulin production and so can helpful for preventing diabetes. It supports the respiratory system, and helps with mild diarrhoea.

Recent research into the benefits of cinnamon show it could also have cancer prevention/fighting properties in dogs.

5. Garlic

Recently there has been a mild panic that garlic is actually bad for dogs. This is not entirely true. It does contain a compound which can cause damage to red blood cells. However,for this to happen the dog needs to be eating large quantities of garlic on a regular basis. And it should not be used on anaemic dogs or those about to have surgery, or puppies less than 8 weeks old.

Used in small amounts a few times a week garlic can have a lot of benefits for your dog. These include boosting the immune system and helping to prevent cancer or help fight existing cancer. It has antibiotic and anti-microbial properties and so can fight internal and external bacteria, viral or fungal infections and parasites (including tapeworms and possibly fleas and ticks). It also boosts liver function.

A little garlic diluted in olive oil can be used as a topical antiseptic for minor wounds.

6. Ginger

Ginger is also a warming herb and can be used mixed into food or as a tea to settle upset stomachs and nausea. It's also effective for dogs suffering from travel sickness. It improves circulation and reduces joint stiffness.

It can also be used as a general tonic.

7. Lavender

Definitely one of the most well known and commonly grown garden herbs! Often used for it's calming and soothing properties.

Used as an infusion it can be used to rinse and clean small wounds and sores. It reduces infection and promotes skin healing and has a slight analgesic effect. Taken internally it helps with digestive problems.

A Lavender infused water rinse after a bath will leave you with a beautifully scented pooch!

8. Milk Thistle

This is one of the most effective liver support and protection remedies. It is an excellent aid in treatment for hepatitis, pancreatitus, skin problems secondary to liver disease, liver cancer and kidney disease. It also helps recovery from Parvovirus.

Milk Thistle is readily available as a supplement. Look for a reputable brand.

9. Parsley

Raw chopped parsley added to food can help with doggy breath!

It is rich in vitamins (A,C,B1,B2,K) and minerals so has good nutritional benefits. It can be used to treat anaemia, reduce arthritic inflammation, colic and urinary tract infections. It is a mild diuretic and boosts kidney function.

10. Rosemary

Another garden favourite!

A strong infusion used for bathing will deter fleas. Bedding can also be washed in this. It is rich in vitamins and anti-oxidants so makes a good general tonic. It also has mild anti-inflammatory properties.


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