7 Natural Home Remedies For Your Dog

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We all want to ensure that our dogs are healthy and happy but sometimes, they are going to end up feeling under the weather. It’s always a good idea to check with the veterinarian when such problems arise, even if the symptoms are mild.

Your veterinarian will look the dog over and may give the green light to use a natural remedy to treat the problem. Here are some possibilities for you to consider when the issues are mild.

1. Upset Stomach: When your dog suffers from constipation or diarrhea, talk to your vet about the potential problems that could be behind it. When stomach problems are only an occasional issue, some help may be available right in your own pantry. Plain canned pumpkin, not the filling for pumpkin pie, may help to ease his digestive system.

Pumpkin provides a lot of fiber and has plenty of vitamins A, C and E. It also provides potassium and iron. When your dog gets that fiber and the water in pumpkin, it can firm up his stool. It also helps to clean out his system by stimulating the growth of beneficial bacteria and stopping the bad bacteria from growing according to the American Kennel Club.

Then again, if your dog is having an issue with constipation, give him plenty of water because it can get worse if he is dehydrated. Just make sure your veterinarian knows if the problem is persistent.

According to the AKC, 1 tablespoon of pumpkin helps with diarrhea and the Merck Manual says 1-4 tablespoons for constipation. Your veterinarian may have additional suggestions.

2. Dry Skin: It is not out of the question for dogs to get dry, itchy skin. The veterinarian can rule out any issues that may be behind it, such as allergies and may be able to help with a natural treatment. Be cautious about giving too many baths because it can remove the natural oils in the skin according to Dogster. If you do wash your dog, be sure a moisturizing shampoo with oatmeal or aloe vera is used. Some type of gentle, hypoallergenic shampoo with a moisturizing conditioner may work wonders.

In addition, you can supplement your dog’s diet with omega-3 fatty acids. Liquids can be poured over the pet food or they can take some capsules as a treat. Your veterinarian can help you with those suggestions.

Photo: Flickr / Danny VB

3. Ear Gunk: If you think that your dog may need a good ear cleaning, try smelling them says veterinarian Marty Becker. If your dog’s ears are healthy they won’t smell but if they smell like yeast or just stink, it’s a good indication that they have an infection. Becker suggests you can clean the ears for a mild order or if your dog is shaking its head.

A gentle cleanser specifically made for dogs ears is recommended by most veterinarians. A warm, damp cloth can also be used. The Bainfield Pet Hospital recommends avoiding a mixture of vinegar, alcohol or hydrogen peroxide because it can be irritating to the ear canal.

4. Dry Paw Pads: For the most part, your dog’s paw pads will be able to handle almost anything they come up against. A long winter, hot sidewalks or too much hiking can sometimes cause them to experience problems. Natural products are available, such as Musher’s Secret or you can use vitamin E or coconut oil on the paw pads, says Dogster. If your dog’s pads are bleeding or cracked, talk to the veterinarian.

Photo: Flickr / Jared Alden

5. Cuts And Wounds: For minor cuts, you can use tap water and rinse the area. A warm saline solution comprised of a teaspoon of salt or Epsom salts with 2 cups of water can also be used according to VCA Hospitals. They also suggest the following:

“DO NOT use soaps, shampoos, rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, herbal preparations, tea tree oil, or any other product to clean an open wound unless specifically instructed to do so by the veterinarian. Some of these products are toxic if taken internally, while others can actually delay healing.”

6. Bad Breath: When your dog suffers from bad breath, it could be a problem with a buildup of tartar or tooth decay. Don’t use a doggy mouth wash to cover the issue. Clean the dog’s bowl regularly and change the water on a daily basis. Clean their teeth using chew toys or give them treats like carrots or sweet potatoes. The best thing you can do is to brush your dog’s teeth using dog toothpaste and scrubbing with the right tools.

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7. Fleas and Insects: Most veterinarians prefer topical or oral medications to prevent fleas and ticks. If you would like to avoid using medication, you can try a natural flea remedy. Veterinarians recommend that more frequent blood tests be given to the dog to monitor for heartworm or tick-borne diseases if you choose a natural method.

It is possible to make your own flea spray out of rosemary, lemon and neem oil. Add in some apple cider vinegar or brewers yeast to add to your pet’s diet. You might also want to create a natural flea collar and add nematodes to your yard to hope they keep the insects away.

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