• The Immune System 
    Astragalus root, Astragalus membranaceus, a popular plant in Chinese medicine, is considered an immuno-stimulant herb. It is said to stimulate the development of cells in the immune system. The purple coneflower, Echinacea purpurea, one of the most popular of all herbs, is said to stimulate macrophages, especially in their action against yeast cells. According to research, both berberis and aloe vera stimulate an immune response.

  •  Allergies 
    If the absorptive lining of the small intestines has been damaged and is "leaking", gentle herbs such as fennel seed, Foeniculum vulgar, and cumin root, Cuminum cyminum, are given. Turmeric root, Curcuma longa, is said to have anti-inflammatory properties and to aid digestion of protein. Echinacea before the allergy season may boost the immune system. Oil of peppermint, Mentha piperata, is said to clear nasal congestion. The Ayurvedic herb Coleus forskholii is said to dilate the bronchi as powerfully as some prescribed drugs. Ginkgo, aloe vera (which is said to have anti-inflammatory abilities), and khella, Ammi visnaga, are said to reduce bronchial constriction. 

  • Cancer 
    Herbs that are claimed to have anti-cancer properties include lemon balm, Melissa officinalis, mistletoe leaf, Viscum album, barberry bark, Berberis Vulgaris, Roman chamomile flower, Chamaemelum nobile, comfrey leaf; Symphytum officinale, Echinacea root, and fenugreek seed, Trigonella foenumgraecum. Recent research suggests that Astragalus membranaceus roots, Ligustrum lucidum seeds, and the TCM herbs Oldenlandia diffusa and Scutellaria barbata may be effective for preventing certain forms of human cancer. While the Chinese Astragalus membranaceus is non-toxic, other members of this genus are potentially dangerous. Only use herbs under supervision of a herbalist experienced with their use in dogs.

  • Infectious Diseases 
    Infusion of catnip, Nepeta cataria, is used for treating a fever, Echinacea to enhance the immune system, and thyme, Thymus vulgaris, to relax the windpipe and bronchial passages in respiratory infections.

  • The Skin 
    Abraded skin is washed in warm, soapy water and any embedded material is gently scraped out. Warm, wet tea bags on wounds may help blood clots to form. Herbs with antibacterial and antihemorrhagic properties are used. Tincture of pot marigold, Calendula officinalis, diluted in water may promote blood clotting. Turmeric root powder, Curcuma longa, can be effective but it causes intense, yellow staining to the skin and hair (and clothing and furniture!). Yarrow herb, Athillea millefolium, does not stain. It is applied topically until obvious healing begins. Yarrow may also be combined with peppermint, Mentha piperita, or German chamomile flower, Matricaria recutita. To encourage epithelial growth from the edges of the abrasion, comfrey leaf Symphytum officinale, may be used. Published studies say that new skin formation is faster when Calendula tincture is applied to a wound. Hypericum tincture by mouth is also said to accelerate wound healing. 

  • Skin Disorders 
    Marshmallow, Althaea officinalis, and slippery elm, Ulmus rubra, ointment is applied to thin-walled abscesses. Open wounds are irrigated with peppermint tea, Mentha piperita. Hot spots are shaved and cleaned with dilute cider vinegar. Aloe Vera cream is then applied. Herbs said to have antifungal properties include tea tree oil, thyme, Thymus vulgaris, angelica root, Angelica archangelica, marigold flower, Calendula officinalis, and rosemary leaf, Rosmarinus officinalis. If the herbalist believes a skin infection occurs due to a hormonal imbalance, yam, Dioscora, may be given to correct hormone levels.

  • Parasite Control 
    Cider vinegar is a repellent to some insects. Powdered garlic, and goldenseal, mixed in olive oil, are applied to areas of skin infested with Demodex mange. Also for Demodex, copious quantities of vegetable oil rubbed into the skin are said to starve Demodex mites of oxygen. Because ear mites (Otodectes cynotis) are most active at night, treat infested ears just before your bedtime. Dilute nine drops of yellow dock tincture, in 15 ml water and instil in affected ears every three days for six weeks. Olive oil instilled alternate days for six weeks is also recommended. Six weeks are necessary because mite eggs hatch over this period.
    For fleas, use a fine-toothed, metal flea comb. Place captured fleas in ammonia-laced water. Natural pyrethrin powder, especially from chrysanthemums grown in Kenya, is an effective natural insecticide. In India it is mixed with Acorus calamus and also used for ticks and lice. Flea control depends upon preventing or reducing reinfestations. Washing and vacuuming the environment reduces adult, larval, and egg stages of fleas. Always incinerate used vacuum-cleaner bags. Some herbalists advocate leaving eucalyptus leaves under furniture and rugs or rubbing fennel foliage into your dog's coat. Nematodes are bugs that eat fleas: these are commercially available and are introduced into the yard or garden.
    Corn starch, mixed with just enough boiled water to make a paste, may reduce itching when applied to irritated areas. Goldenseal and Calendula cream may also be useful. Echinacea, goldenseal, or pau d'arco internally, may strengthen the immune system. Infusion of German chamomile flower is said to be soothing and cooling to irritated skin. Other herbs, such as burdock root, curled dock root, licorice root, and southernwood herb may reduce itchiness. 

  • Bones and Joints 
    Choose herb treatments according to their recognized properties. Use analgesics or anti-inflammatories such as angelica root, and greater celandine. Anti-rheumatics include celery seed, and meadowsweet. Comfrey leaf is thought to help heal synovial membrane and joint cartilage. 

  • Muscles, Tendons, and Ligaments 
    Local treatments for sprains and muscle strains include liniments of yarrow herb, hyssop, or sweet pepper. Bruising of muscles may be treated with lettuce leaf, hop strobile, German chamomile flower, or rosemary leaf. Herbs that have been used to control muscle spasm include ginger root, caraway seed, and fennel seed. 

  • The Teeth and Mouth 
    Gentle herbs that may help the digestion include cardamom seed, fennel seed, and small amounts of ginger root, and barberry bark. Marshmallow root is said to help soothe soreness in the gums. Purple coneflower decoction may be recommended as a mouthwash both for oral health and for general condition. 

  • Digestion - the Stomach 
    According to recent research work, extract of plums, is as effective as powerful drugs for inhibiting vomiting in dogs. Infusions of German chamomile, fennel, and peppermint are used to control nausea in dogs. Relaxants and tonics such as ginger may relieve nausea associated with anxiety. Ginger is said to improve digestion of proteins and control nausea in travel or motion sickness by strengthening the mucosal lining of the stomach. It affects the production of prostaglandins and by doing so may be anti-inflammatory. For hepatitis, seeds of milk thistle, may inhibit liver damage and promote liver cell regeneration. 

  • Digestion - the Intestines 
    Various herbs are used to reduce bowel inflammation. Marshmallow root, and slippery elm, soothe and protect tissues. Echinacea and goldenseal, inhibit bacteria, while pokeroot heals ulceration and comfrey eases inflammation. Arrowroot in water soothes the bowels. Dandelion, is a mild laxative and B vitamin source. Peppermint oil supplied in capsules specially treated to survive the acid environment of the stomach, reduces intestinal contractions and associated pain and trapped gas. Other herbs said to have similar effects include German chamomile, valerian, rosemary, and lemon balm. Ayurvedic triphala powder may be suggested as a laxative, and light kaolin clay as a toxin absorbent and intestine protector. 

  • The Urinary System 
    Herbs with a reputation for preventing urinary stones include stone root herb, and horsetail herb. Diuretic herbs that increase urine flow are sometimes used. These include dandelion leaf; and couch grass. Cherry stalk extract reduces edema. Urinary antiseptics to treat bacterial cystitis include bearberry leaf, and juniper berry.
    Herbs that soothe the urinary tract, helping the passage of small stones, include peppermint herb, fennel seed, and marshmallow root.
    For kidney impairment, a dog's general well-being may be improved when any of these herbs are appropriately used: cinnamon bark, comfrey leaf, and celery seed. 

  • The Reproductive System 
    Sedative herbs such as valerian root, lemon baIm leaf, hop strobile, and lettuce leaf, are used by veterinary herbalists to reduce stress or anxiety in bitches during mating. To enhance the performance of stud dogs they may recommend zinc supplement in the diet and any of ginseng root, celery seed for one week prior to mating, or fenugreek seed for a longer period. Sage, and motherwort are used as natural estrogen supplements. The "female" herbs black cohosh, blue cohosh, and wild yam, contain high levels of plant estrogens, and are recommended to control over-sexed male dogs. Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), produced from wild yam, is recommended to improve sperm counts. It should be treated as a hormone, with caution. 

  • The Cardiovascular System 
    Emblic myrobalan fruit, angelica root, ashwagandha root, and rehmannia root, may help to regenerate blood cells in anemic dogs. German studies showed that bioflavonoids in hawthorn, dilate coronary arteries, improving the supply of oxygen to heart muscle.A purified extract of ginger, when given in injections, partially destroyed adult heartworms and reduced microfilaria by up to 98 percent. 

  • The Respiratory System 
    A variety of herbs may be recommended to manage blocked sinuses and nasal congestion. These include hyssop herb, cinnamon bark, celery seed, and elder flower. Garlic and Echinacea may boost the immune system. 

  • The Central Nervous System 
    For senility, a veterinary herbalist may suggest ginseng root, or myrrh resin. Ginkgo biloba is thought to boost blood flow to the brain and may delay the development of senile dementia. St. John's wort is thought to have painkilling properties. Yarrow infusion is thought to improve circulation and lower blood pressure. 

  • The Endocrine System 
    Veterinary herbalists suggest following orthodox therapy for diabetes, including diet management and insulin injections, but may recommend herbs said to reduce blood sugar. These include marshmallow root, coriander seed, and nettle. 

  • Emotions and Behaviour 
    For anxiety, herbal veterinarians may suggest sedative herbs such as valerian root, guelder rose bark, lemon balm, Roman chamomile flower, and lettuce leaf. Hops may also have a sedative effect, calming nervous individuals. St. John's wort is three times better than placebo for treating mild depression in people. It is used with increasing frequency as "background therapy" for anxious dogs undergoing desensitization training.

  •  Eye and Nose Disorders 
    To soothe sore, inflamed, "allergic" eyes or sore nostrils, a herbal vet may suggest bathing the eyes with a lightly boiled decoction of any of fennel seed, eyebright or elder flower. To control bacterial eye infections, decoctions of either fennel seed or Roman chamomile flower are used. Greater celandine infusions may also be used to bathe sore eyes. Cod-liver oil may be applied as a lubricant for dogs with a crusty nose. Infusion of mullein may be suggested to help clear blocked sinuses. Warning: don't smear decongestants on a dog's fur. Some may be toxic if swallowed. 

  • The Ears 
    Olive or almond oil may help to clear residual wax after an ear infection or infestation. Damage to the ear flap may be cleaned with witch hazel. For white dogs, prone to sunburn to their ear tips, aloe vera may be soothing. Marigold is used for cleaning inflamed ear canals. Ginger, and ginkgo biloba are said by some to reduce deafness by improving circulation to the ear. Commercially produced herbal gels are available for controlling external ear canal conditions and infestations.

Herbs 2000


For immediate soothing and antiseptic use for wounds or skin injections, or for the relief of mild gastroenteric problems, an infusion of peppermint leaf or Roman chamomile flower can be made at home:

  • Heat a clean (well washed and rinsed) cup with boiling water. 

  • Pour away the water and add 1 tsp of dried or 2 tsp of fresh herb to the heated cup. 

  • Fill to three-quarters level with boiling water. 

  • Cover and leave to steep for 10 minutes. 

  • Remove the cover, pouring condensation inside the cover back into the cup.

  •  Strain and use or store covered in a cool place. 

Herbal Salve: Make Your Own 
  • 1 cup infused oil. 
  • 1/3 of a cup Comfrey, Calendula, St. John's Wort
  • ½ teaspoon Tea Tree Oil
  • ¾ teaspoon Grapefruit Extract.
  • 1oz. Beeswax (Combine ingredients)

Melt the beeswax on Low Heat 
Cool a sample in the fridge.
Its constancy should be soft and pliable. If it's too hard (+ tea tree oil); too soft (+ beeswax) .
Put the remaining salve in low jars / containers - ensure that you have a good seal. This salve is safe and effective to use, its antiseptic properties help with burns, cuts, and is safe if ingested. It also works great for nursing mothers.


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