Even though summertime is a favorite season for us humans, it can bring a plethora of distinct health concerns for our canine friends. Here are some tips for holistically treating your dog’s symptoms during the remaining days of summer:
For wounds and scratches: Tea Tree Oil is a common natural ingredient used to naturally treat wounds and scratches, and to keep wounds clean and support natural healing. Other natural ingredients you can try are althaea officinalis root, which acts as a skin soother or plantago lanceota, which acts as an astringent to stop bleeding. Rosemary can also be used and works as an overall skin tonic; to use, find a rosemary oil, shampoo, or tea that you can apply directly to your pet’s skin.
Tricia Stimac, DVM, CVA, CVSMT of LePar Animal Hospital in Evergreen Park suggests that you clip the hair away from the area of concern to see how bad it is and allow air to get to the area. If it is full of hair you can harbor an infection in the area and prevent healing. Disinfect the wound with either povadone iodine (also called Betadine) or chlorahexaderm (also called Nolvasan) both diluted with water. Dilute concentrated Betadine with water to a light iced tea color (or Nolvasan with water to light blue color) and use the solution as a flush. Flush area one to two times a day until healed.
Flea control: Warmer weather also brings other pests: fleas. Stimac suggests weekly to bi-weekly baths to remove allergens, keeping the skin free from infection. She again recommends using Betadine or Nolvasan. You can also use this mixture and apply to the skin with a wash cloth for body wipe down/baths.
These are some common ailments your dog may face during the warmer months. Just like traditional medicine, monitor the amount of medication given to your dog, and, if you do not see improvement within a few days, take your dog to your veterinarian.
Lara Jackson is a freelance writer and editor based in the Chicago area. She writes articles on the environment, animal issues, local interests, health care, aviation, and other subjects. Visit her website at lrjwriteedit.wordpress.com or her “green blog” at laraj71.wordpress.com.