Monday, 13 February 2012


In this article...
1. An Introduction - Herbs and Spices for Your Dog
2. A Simple Sampling of Herbs and Spices For Your Dog's Daily Diet
3. How To Incorporate Herbs into Your Dog;'
4. A List of Herbs and Spices That are Safe For Dogs
5. A List of Herbs and Spices That are NOT Safe For Dogs
6. General Guideline for Daily Herbal Intake

1.0 An Introduction -
      Herbs, Spices for Your Dog

 1.1 Herbs and Spices safely, effectively used for thousands
       of years...

Humans have used herbs and spices to add flavor to their food and to treat ailments for thousands of years. So, it should not be surprising that there are many herbs and spices that are good for dogs.

Holistic medicine for dogs includes the use of herbs and spices to treat wounds, ameliorate and remedy ailments and diseases. This is the approach that I take with my dogs. I use herbs, spices and nutruceuticals to treat and remedy ailments. I don't rely on antibiotics, steroids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) chemical-based drugs, etc. to treat and remedy ailments. In most cases these conventional drugs are not intended to or capable of providing remedy for a condition. Instead the drugs mask the condition, may even accentuate the condition (the drug Reconcile is one such example) or create a secondary condition. Conventional drugs usually provide a band-aid approach to the condition, typically accompanied by an array of minor, moderate and severe adverse side effects. Allopathic veterinary medicine is by nature a discipline that is designed to excel at emergency medicine, whereas day-to-day health - diet, nutrition, wellness is not the traditional realm of allopathic medicine. 

Herbs and spices offer a natural and effective alternative to conventional drugs - without the terrible side effects!

1.2 When Used Properly Herbs and Spices Offer:

1) Support for daily health when integrated into the daily

    1. Brain function health;
    2. Bone, ligament, tendon and muscle health;
    3. Cardiovascular health;
    4. Dental and oral health;
    5. Detox
    6. Endocrine health;
    7. Gastrointestinal health;
    8. Immune system health;
    9. Gastrointestinal health;
    10. Fur and skin health, including
      1. Shampoos, rinses
      2. Paw soaks
    11. Urinary tract health;
    12. etc.
2) Support for temporary conditions for example: 
    1. Anxiety and stress
    2. Candida;
    3. Ear infections;
    4. Eye Infections;
    5. Depression; 
    6. Detox after vaccinations, etc.;
    7. Diarrhea;
    8. Fungal infections such as ringworm;
    9. Insect repellent and protection;
    10. Parasite preventatives;
    11. Toxicity; 
    12. Motion Sickness
    13. Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
    14. Wounds that require healing;
    15. Viruses
3) Ingested and topical support for treating chronic disease
    and conditions such as:

    1. Allergies;
      1. Environmental;
      2. Food;
    2. Asthma;
    3. Arthritis;
    4. Cancer;
    5. Candida;
    6. Gastrointestinal conditions such as colitis;
    7. Fatty tumors - Lipomas;
    8. Gingivitis and infected teeth;
    9. Renal issues;
      1. Bladder and kidney stones (uroliths);
      2. Kidney and liver damage, etc.
    10.  etc. 
Your dog’s best defenses against ailments and diseases is healthy immune system. A healthy diet supports a healthy immune system. Fresh foods can be an excellent addition to your dog’s daily diet - fruits and vegetables, fatty fish, eggs, yogurt or kefir, cheese, herbs and spices. In addition to the health benefits, dogs do like the taste of many herbs and spices. Homemade  food including grain-free nutritionally complete meals, broth, smoothies and treats can include  healthful herbs all of which can boost the immune system.

Herbs and spices should not be indiscriminately given to dogs. Some herbs and spices are very powerful and can have side effects will others are mild and less likely to cause issues. Before you decide to give a herb or spice to your dog make sure you know its use, side effects, toxicity (if any) and safe dosage. 

2.0 A Simple Sampling of Herbs and
      Spices For Your Dog's Daily Diet

2.1 On a Daily Basis...

My dogs (various sizes and breeds) get all of the following herbs either in their food or added to their food...Aloe Vera, Anise seeds, Basil, Caraway Seeds, Ceylon Cinnamon, Flax Seeds, Fennel Seeds, Garlic, Ginger, Rooibos Tea or Green Tea (decaffeinated), Mint, Parsley, Rosemary, Sage and Turmeric
These herbs are all non-toxic and beneficial for dogs, but like any other food stuff should always be provided in a safe amount and you need to consider any health conditions or conventional medications that your dog may be taking. While these herbs are non-toxic, they can interfere with conventional western medicines - this is discussed further below.

Out for a walk with some of my dogs
2.2 Highlighting a Few of Those Daily Herbs...

Aloe Vera  
Aloe Vera juice (100% food grad) contains amino acids, folate, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, zinc, vitamin A, C and E. It has anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-allergy agents and is an anti-oxidant. 100% pure Aloe Vera juice can also be taken internally to boost the immune system, help reduce the symptoms of allergies and to help the healing of wounds. Aloe Vera gel can be used topically to help wounds heal - 100% Aloe Vera Gel is best. Daily dosages for my dogs are as follows ½ tbs for my 4lb dog, 1tbs for my 8 lb to 25 lb dogs and, 2 tbs for my larger dogs 30 to 70 lbs .

For detailed information on aloe vera juice - health benefits, uses, dosage, cautions and interactions read here.

Basil is rich in essential vitamins, minerals, phyto-nutrients, electrolytes and oils that are essential for optimal health. Basil is an anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-oxidant. Basil is well known for its multiple disease preventing and health promoting properties. You can use fresh basil or dry basil.

Caraway Seeds

Caraway Seeds are rich in dietary fibre, vital vitamins, and minerals, anti-oxidants (cancer and disease fighting). Caraway seeds are considered a warming herb - meaning they help the body stay warm. Caraway seeds are also good for muscle health (anti-contraction).

Ceylon Cinnamon
Cinnamon (Ceylon Cinnamon) is an anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anti-septic, warming and soothing, calming, carminative (anti-flatulent). Cinnamon is said to have one of the highest anti-oxidant levels of all food sources. Cinnamon can help remove the alfatoxins present in foods. Cinnamon is also good for keeping teeth clean and fighting bad breath. I use the powder form (ground cinnamon).

For detailed information on Ceylon cinnamon - health benefits, uses, dosage, cautions and interactions read here 

Flax Seeds

Flax Seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, anti-oxidants, nutrients, minerals and vitamins that are essential for optimal health. Flax seeds also help pass toxins out of the body.  Use ground flax seeds not whole flax seeds. There are two types of flax seeds - brown and yellow (golden), both are similar in nutritional value. Daily dosage should be in the range of:
1/2 tsp for tea cup dogs 2 to 4 lbs;
1 tsp for toy dogs 5 to 15 lbs;
1 tbs for small dogs 16 to 25 lbs;
1.5 tbs for medium-small dogs 26 to 39 lbs
2 tbs for medium-large size dogs 40 to 70 lbs
2.5 tbs for large dogs 71 lbs to 90 lbs 
3 tbs for x-large dogs 91+ pounds

For more information on flax seeds - health benefits, uses, dosage, cautions and interactions read here 

Fennel Seeds
Fennel Seeds are rich in dietary fibre, anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, rich in vitamins, minerals. They also help protect the body from infection, disease and cancer. Fennel seeds are good for the urinary tract. They also help in the absorption of food stuff - thereby helping to keep your dog’s teeth clean and helping with digestion.

Garlic You may have heard that garlic is bad for dogs. Well, garlic has been used for many years by holistic veterinarians. The confusion about whether garlic is good or bad seems to have arisen from confusion with its close cousin, the onion. Both garlic and onion contain thiosulphate, the substance responsible for causing ‘Heinx Factor’ anemia in dogs. However the amount of thiosulphate found in garlic is much lower than in onions, in fact the amount in garlic is barely traceable!  The fear of garlic is a new one - propagated by rumour on the internet and not proven by any facts or study. For an extensive list of foods that dogs should not eat you can click here.

When garlic is ingested in reasonable amounts there are no harmful effects, but there are plenty of beneficial qualities...
  • Garlic contains germanium - an anti-cancer agent;
  • Garlic helps to regulate blood pressure;
  • Helps strengthen the body's defences against allergies;
  • Helps regulate blood sugar levels; 
  • Garlic is high in vitamins, minerals and nutrients:
  • Calcium, Potassium, Zinc;
  • Protein;
  • Vitamin A, B, B2, C;
  • Garlic is an aid to fighting and treating:
    • Diabetes; 
    • Liver, heart and kidney disease;
  • Garlic is a natural flea repellent and de-wormer.
Please do not add garlic in a mixed form to your dogs diet (i.e. garlic steak spice - this is not pure garlic and can make your dog very ill). When I refer to garlic I am talking about garlic in its pure form - garlic cloves. A safe dosage for garlic is 1 clove/30lbs of body weight per day. I use finely chopped fresh garlic. You can read more about garlic here.


Ginger is an anti-coagulant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, carminative. Ginger also Ginger helps in the absorption of food stuff - thereby helping to keep your dog’s teeth clean and helping with digestion. Ginger also helps in treating nausea such as motion sickness. Ginger helps boost healthy blood circulation, so it is very helpful for a dog that is prone to vascular damage of the extremities. My Boxer, Robbie has very short fur and is particularly susceptible to vascular damage (i.e. frost bite of the extremities, including ears). In the winter I add about 1 tbs of finely chopped ginger root to his daily salad.  You can also use dry, ground ginger.

For more information on ginger - health benefits, uses, dosage, cautions and interactions read here 

Green Tea 


Green Tea is rich in anti-oxidants and is helpful in fighting some cancers. It is also calming. Make sure you use decaffeinated Green Tea.

Rooibos Tea

Rooibos Tea (Red Bush Tea) is naturally anti-viral, anti-allergenic and a mild anti-anxiety mediator. Rooibos tea is also high in vitamin C, rich in antioxidants (37 to be exact), several minerals and alpha-hydroxy-acid. To give your dog’s immune system a boost you can also add rooibos tea to your dog’s drinking water or food. Rooibos is naturally caffeine free and low in tannin. The USDA has confirmed that rooibos tea is capable of reducing cancer, heart disease and other illness. It is also excellent for dogs with chronic skin allergies. If your dog suffers from anxiety it can help to relax and de-stress your dog. The only caution - if your dog is suffering from iron deficiency do not give him/her rooibos as it slows down the absorption of iron. You can read more about Rooibos Tea here.

I add the juice of one fresh lemon to a freshly steeped pot of green tea or rooibos tea and pour the resulting tea into a large bottle that I store in the refrigerator. Once a day I add the tea to each of my dogs' meals.

Parsley is high in fiber, rich in anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals which help fight cancer and enhance the functioning of all organs. It also helps the body pass toxins and fights bad breath. Fresh Parsley is best but you can also use dry parsley.

Rosemary is high in fiber, rich in vitamins, anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, anti fungal, anti-septic, disease preventing and health promoting properties. You can use fresh or dry rosemary. 

Turmeric (and Curcumin)

Turmeric is high in fiber, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, rich in vitamins and minerals and offers protection against anemia, arthritis, cancer, stroke (cardiovascular health), neuritis, and memory disorders. You can use powder (most commonly available), crushed or fresh root. I use the powder form (ground turmeric).

If your dog is overweight you might want to try adding either turmeric or curcumin to his/her daily research by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has confirmed that curcumin helps to speed up metabolism...

Curcumin is the most active curcuminoid found in turmeric, and provides turmeric with:
Its bright yellow colour. Curcumin is well known for its...
  • Anti-inflammatory properties;
    • beneficial for traumatic from accidents and trauma as it helps lower serum levels which would otherwise cause massive inflammation leading to the shutdown of the heart and other organs;
    • beneficial in the fight against rheumatoid arthritis.  
  • Cancer fighting properties:
    • Inhibition, and;
    • Treatment;
  • Cardiovascular health properties, and;
  • As mentioned above - metabolism boosting properties.
Like turmeric, curcumin is safe for dogs. If you would like to learn more about the health benefits of Curcumin and Turmeric for your dog you can read this article.

3.0 How To Incorporate Herbs into
      Your Dog's Daily Diet

3.1 Introducing Herbs to Your Dog’s Diet

My dogs have ever had an allergic reaction to the herbs or spices that I give them, but just like with any other food stuff, some dogs may react to a herb or spice when other dogs will not. I always recommend that if you are going to introduce new food stuff to your dog, introduce only one new item at a time. Wait a few days before introducing the next new item. Allergic reactions can range from runny eyes and nose, sneezing, itching, swelling, diarrhea or vomiting.

3.2 Healthy Recipes with Herbs
3.3 Organic Yields Maximum Benefits

To ensure that the herb or spice you are using has maximum benefits and efficacy use organic products only.


4.0 General Cautions

Before you use any herb or spice on your dog or cat - as part of the daily diet; as an ingested treatment/remedy or as a topical treatment - understand possible:

  1. Cautions, if any;
  2. Side effects if any; 
  3. Drug interactions if any - if your dog or cat is on any conventional drug;
  4. Interactions between herbs/spices if you are using multiple herbs and spices.
Failure to understand and do items 1. to 4. above can result in your dog or cat experiencing a health threatening adverse reaction.

While certain herbs and spices do not create a hazard by themselves they can interfere with conventional western medicines - for example but not limited to...
  • Aspirin
  • Antibiotics
  • Cardiac drugs
  • Central Nervous System drugs
  • Chemotherapy drugs
  • Diabetic / Hypoglycemic drugs (i.e. Insulin)
  • Diuretics (i.e. Furosemide, Diazide)
  • Drugs changed by the liver;
  • Hormones (i.e. Thyroxine)
  • Steroids
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) i.e. Rimadyl
    • Please note - Turmeric and Curcumin will not degrade the effects of Glucosamine, Chondrotin or MSN, and can be used with Turmeric and Curcumin.
Not all herbs and spices are safe for pregnant or lactating dogs and cats, or for puppies and kittens. 

Make sure you do your homework or get advise prior to introducing herbs and spices to your dog's , cat's diet/ health care regimen.

5.0 A List of Herbs, Spices That Are Safe For Dogs...

5.1 Herbs and Spices That are Safe, Beneficial for Dogs

The following provides a partial list of herbs and spices that are safe for dogs to ingest. Some are also safe and effective for topical applications as well…as noted in section 4.0 above make sure you do your research prior to providing any herb or spice to your dog for ingestion or topical application...
Aloe Vera multiple health benefits .
Anise multiple health benefits
Arnica Montana multiple health benefits

Barberry Bark
Basil multiple health benefits

Cat's Claw multiple health benefits  
Cat Thyme  
  • Should never be ingested but can be used topically;
  • Topical application:
    • Cayenne in small quantity can be used as a topical treatment; 
    • The Capsaicin from cayenne peppers can be added to creams and gels as capsacin is a natural pain reliever and also has excellent antibacterial properties to help fight infection.
Caraway Seed multiple health benefits  
1Chamomile multiple health benefits


1Cinnamon multiple health benefits also...

Cilantro (Corriander)
Curcumin - multiple health benefits
  • Curcumin offers an vast array of health benefits
Dong Quai multiple health benefits  


Flax Seed multiple health benefits also...

1Fennel multiple health benefits  
Garlic multiple health benefits also...

Ginger multiple health benefits also...

Green Tea - decafinated multiple health benefits also...

Golden Seal
Irish Moss  
Indian Strawberry  
Juniper Berries multiple health benefits
Lemon Balm  
Lemon Grass  
Lemon Verbena  
Licorice multiple health benefits
Majoram multiple health benefits  
Marshmallow root  
Milk Thistle multiple health benefits  

Oregon Grape

Parsley multiple health benefits also...

Penny Royal - use with moderation topically, do not use as an ingested treatment   

Red Clover

Rooibos Tea multiple health benefits  also...

Selfheal (Prunella vulgaris) 
  • safe for dogs that are not pregnant
 Slippery Elm multiple health benefits

St. John’s Wort   
Tea Tree Oil
  • Only use in diluted carrier such as almond or olive oil in a ratio of 50:50
  • Not for ingested use! 
  • Only for topical use with great caution and should NOT be ingested by dog via licking, breathing in vapor etc.
Turmeric - multiple health benefits

 Uva Ursi  
Wormwood (a dewormer that should only be used under the supervision of a holistic
1 note - these herbs are safe for a pregnant or lactating dog when used as a culinary herb.  Do not use essential oils derived from these herbs as part of a pregnant or lactating dog's diet.

5.2 Herbs and Spices that must be used with caution, and
      herbs that are NOT Safe  for Dogs

The following provides a list of some of herbs that are harmful to dogs and some herbs that must be used with caution…
  • Cocoa
  • Comfrey
  • Paprika
  • Pennyroyal (ingested)
  • Pepper - while many dogs can tolerate small amounts of pepper, dog;s with sensitive
                   GI tracts can suffer inflammation from ingesting pepper - use with caution.
  • Salt - should be obtained from eating real food, should not be added to food.
  • Tea Tree Oil - must only be used in diluted carrier such as almond or olive oil in a ratio of 50:50
  • Nutmeg
  • Mace
  • Ma Huang (Ephedra) use under supervision of a holistic veterinarian only.
  • Wormwood - needs to be used with caution
6.0 General Guide
Daily Herbal Intake Based on Dog’s Weight

The table below provides a general guideline per individual herb or spice based on your dog’s weight...

Dog’s, Cat’s Weight
Dry Powder
Tea or Infusion
Tablet, Pill
pounds (lbs)
1-10 lbs
1/16 –
1/8 tsp

1/8 cup
1x to 3x
1x to 3x
1 -
1x to 3x
10-20 lbs
1/8 tsp -
1/4 tsp

1/4 cup
1x to 3x
1/2 -
1x to 3x
3 -
1x to 3x
20-50 lbs
1/4 tsp -
1 tsp

1/4 cup -
1/2 cup
1x to 3x
1 –
1x to 3x
5 -
1x to 3x
50-100 lbs
1 tsp -
2 tsp

1/2 cup –
1 cup
1x to 3x
1 –
1x to 3x
1x to 3x
+100 lbs
2 tsp -

1 tbs
1 cup
1x to 3x
1x to 3x
1x to 3x
tsp = teaspoon     tbs = tablespoon    times/day = times per day    x = times per day

7.0 Holistic Support

Additional Assistance - Holistic Health and Wellness Service
If you require additional support, and guidance - contact me to discuss your requirements. I will determine the appropriate course of action for your situation and I will let you know the applicable fees. I offer consultative services to clients around the world...
Diet, Nutrition Wellness Services
  • Unbiased Diet, Nutrition, Product Advice - information and payment here >>. 
  • Holistic Diet, Nutrition Wellness Plans - information and payment here >>.
Dog Obedience Training and Behavior Modification Services
  • In-Person sessions - information and payment here >>.
  • On-Line consultation and sessions - information and payment here >>.


  1. I have given my cats Brewer's Yeast tablets for years so I am not surprised that herbs can be given to dogs. Is your dog pretty cooperative about taking the herbs or is it an acquired taste for them?

  2. Well, I have ten dogs - different breeds and varying in size from 4 lbs right up to German Shepherds and a Boxer...I have never had to coax any of them to eat herbs, they vacuum them up along with their fruits and veggies. They think it is all a great treat. When I had foster dogs it was the same. When they saw my dogs gobbling-up these food stuffs, the fosters followed suit :>)

  3. Thank you for this great post. I cook for my dog and always include herbs and spices. So many people are unaware of the benefits of home cooking. The addition of herbs and spices really ads to the nutritional value. The table at the end of the post is very helpful. Thank you.

  4. This was very informative, thanks! I was also wondering if there were any herbs to help with stiff joints? Our German Shepherd has so much trouble getting up and down and even sitting.

    1. Turmeric

      Omega Fatty Acids

  5. Hi Sara, there are plenty of herbs and other food stuffs to help with stiff joints in you go:

    Alfalfa is rich in calcium, iron, potassium and silicon, it is also an antioxidant - as such is used to reduce pain and swelling associated with arthritis.

    Licorice is a natural anti-inflammatory and helps reduce pain and swelling resulting from arthritis. You can purchase Licorice in spice (powder), root or extract can be found at natural and health food stores.

    Burdock - can be used to help treat arthritis and is also beneficial as it helps the kidneys and bladder eliminate toxins. Available in root, powder or extract form at natural and health food stores.

    Dandelion Flowers are rich in lecithin and help relieve pain, you can sprinkle the petals on your dog’s food. Pink them yourself from an area that is not treated with pesticides or herbicides or purchase at a health food store.

    Flax seeds are rich in essential fatty acids - fatty acids are essential to joint health, they also help with arthritis and improve the health of the heart. Use ground flax seeds.

    Also read this article to find out other good sources of essential fatty acids (omega 3 and Omega 6) that you can add to your dog’s diet

    I also suggest you consider adding coconut oil to your dog’s diet

    By the way, you can also put your dog on human grade Glucosamine/Chondroitine/MSM 500/400/400 mg tablet. Your dog would need to take 2 aday. Just dip the tablet in natural peanut butter and add it to your dog's bowl of kibble. Costco sells their own brand 'Kirkland' and it is very affective - ranges in ccst from $24,00 to $28.00 for 240 tablets.

  6. what about hemp oil for 3 6 9
    i am trying that out i add a drizzle to the food.
    do you have information on the hemp oil ?

    1. Hemp oil is derived from Hemp seed and contains very little THC at all.

    2. agreed - all my dogs have consumed hemp oil and hemp seed for the last two years - as part of their daily diet - see my article and

  7. I do wish to add that I really appreciate all the good info you posted. I use herbs for myself all the time and knew that there was many herbs not good for dogs but I was not sure which herbs might help enhance a dog health. So thank you thank you for all the good info and my dog said to say thank you too for the good recipes you have. Blogs like this make me very happy about the internet.

  8. it states here at the poison control that aloe vera IS toxic to dogs and cats.

    1. Yes and they also list garlic as poisonous - and they are incorrect in both cases :>)

    2. Good information Karen. I have three rescue (JRT's from Ohio) the oldest being 12. Two of them have ongoing skin issues - alergies. I would like to use aloe vera - can you tell me the correct dosage for 21lb dogs and also what I should be looking for when purchasing? Should it be an 'extract'? Can you recommend the one you use?

    3. Hi Jan,

      Purchase 100% aloe vera juice. Dosage for 21 lb dogs - you can give them 1/8 cup a day. You could mix it into their food with some chicken stock :>)

      If their allergies are caused by pollen in the environment you can use local honey tohelp elevate the allergies...
      The honey must be local - produced from bees within a 50 mile radius of where you live. The honey must be a wild-flower blend. To prepare the infusion, take a handful of dried or fresh mullein leaves and flowers and simmer these in one quarter of water. Cover the container and heat the mixture for about 35 minutes. After 35 minutes filter the solution twice - first through a sieve and then again through a piece of clean cloth. While the solution is still warm, add two tablespoons of the local honey. You can mix a tbs of this into her yogurt on a daily basis. The honey acts as a vaccine, inoculating the system against pollens that cause allergies.

      I would suggest you add the following to their diet on a daily basis -
      1. Turmeric (see the article on my blog site)
      2. Garlic (see the article on my blog site)
      3. You should also sprinkle 1/8tsp cinnamon on their food twice a day.
      4. Add additional omega-3 fatty acid (see the article on my blog site)

      Cheers, K

    4. Add lemon too

  9. thanks for this post. very informative.

  10. I just found your web site and I am so glad I did, I have two dogs an 11 yr old Queensland with stiff joints and overweight,and a almost 4 yr old G Shepherd/ akita mix, a mite over weight 95 lbs but more playful still.
    I have heard of some things bad / good but your list is so impressive. Thanks!

  11. Our 2 dogs are now old. 1 is a 13yr. old German Shepherd x & the other is an 12yr. old Great Dane/Bull Mastiff. For many years we have added fish oil +glucosamine tablets to their diet but last year after a scare with the G.D.x found a herbal remedy from a local source which we now also add. Unfortunately our supplier is now moving overseas so I am hunting for recipes I can make which achieve the same results.The present one contains:-
    1* Marine concentrates ( green lipped mussel)
    2* Flaxseed
    3* Spirulina
    4* Kelp
    5* Tumeric
    6* Ginger
    7* Garlic
    8* Taurine (chondroitin sulphate)
    Can you help on how to make this up i.e. quantities & procedure ?
    Many Thanks.
    Terri - Australia

    1. 1. For the herbs follow the amount as shown in the chart in the above article;

      2. Read this to understand how to prepare the garlic and dosage

      3. You should also add fresh lemon read this for dosage and preparation

      4. Ground flax seed 1 heaping tbs a day /per dog

      5. You need to add more Omega 3 fatty acids to their diet as they are not currently getting a sufficient quantity - read here

      5. Kelp 1 tbs /day

      6. Taurine
      Food Sources
      Meat, poultry, eggs, dairy products, and fish are good sources of taurine or via supplement.

      Typical therapeutic dosage is 500 mg 2 to 3 times daily.

  12. This article and your website is so informative and well organized. Thank you so much for showcasing the natural lifestyle for dogs. I have read various articles about the benefits of lemon balm and just wanted your opinion. My pomeranian has digestive issues and I am hoping to give him lemon balm, either infused in tea or as lemon honey, but want an expert's advice first!

    Thank you so much
    Ottawa, Ontario

    1. What type of digestive issues and what are you feeding him?

  13. I am thrilled with your informative website. I have a 15 year old LabX who is suffering from excessive panting that increases with the rise in temperatures. She has been tested twice for Cushings disease but results show that she is negative. The V Veterinarian suggest that some further tests (Xrays -lungs, Ultrasound-liver) but I am also interested in the possibility that herbal supplements might help alleviate her panting.

    Any suggestions?

    1. #1 You need to boost her immune system and remove toxins from her diet - go to the index page and read my articles on nutrition - including those on dry dog food

      #2 Herbs to boost her immune system, Garlic and Echinacea, raw unpasturized honey - read the article on garlic and on honey (dosage for honey found under articles on allergies)

      #3 Herbs to help respiratory system organic: hyssop, elder flower, Ceylon cinnamon

    2. Thanks for all the suggestions. I will read up on all of it.

      P.S. Negrita thanks you too.

  14. I have a black pug almost ten. She is blind for her diiabeyes. She gets 15 units of Novilin N twice a day. She has been diabetic over three years and is unspade. She occasionally gets a bladder infection after her heat
    Can you tell me which of these herbs should not be used when she is on insulin?

    1. To understand why the bladder infection keeps occurring and to understand how to stop re-occurance and treat it if it does occur read here

      You should also add probiotics to her daily diet

      Don't use if diabetic:

      Cinnamon might decrease blood sugar
      Caraway might decrease blood sugar

  15. Hello --

    I am looking for alternative treatments for diabetes. I found your website because turmeric was suggested as a human alternative, and I did a search to see if dogs can take turmeric, and your site came up. You mentioned that turmeric could interfere with insulin -- can you explain how it interferes? My dog has been on insulin for 2 years now, and to be honest, I don't know how she has been doing on the insulin blood-sugar-wise for the majority of her diabetic "career", but starting June 10th, I've been reading her blood sugar, and she is way out of control -- goes from 62 to over 750. We've finally got her basically at 400, but any increase in insulin and she tosses dangerous low readings. In fact this morning she tossed me a reading of 70 and that's with no increase in insulin and a read of 473 last night. I have decided that since the vet is challenged as well, this is the perfect time to attempt alternative methods of treatment with veterinarian oversight :) But I need to understand how turmeric would interfere with insulin! Also, if you have any other suggestions -- I see you mentioned cinnamon and caraway in the post above this window, and I will check those out too :)

    Thank you!


    1. Hi Sharon,

      Turmeric will not interfere with insulin. In-fact turmeric is an anti-diabetic. Go to this article to read much more detail on the benefits of turmeric and how to incorporate it into your dog's diet

      In my comments to the person above your comment I caution them NOT TO use Ginger and that both cinnamon and caraway CAN effect blood sugar levels so unless you know how to moderate insulin levels to adjust to possible change in blood sugar levels that may be caused by cinnamon and caraway do not use them.

      I would advise you to get your dog off of commercially manufactured food that includes any grain!

      Go with a grain-free dog food or even better make her homemade GRAIN-FREE food

      Grain-in food poses many health hazards for a healthy dog, for a dog with diabetes grain-in foods and treats are even worse! Grain is converted by the body very quickly into sugar - this drives insulin levels way up. No grain-in food or treats for your dog! For an example of how grains can threaten her health read this

  16. Karen,

    I have a 10 year old Welsh Corgi. He gets yeast infections a lot. In his ears and on his back. He has elephant ear under his arm pits.

    Per the vet we have tried every kind of food out their and even made my own. But nothing ever worked. Even took medications. The infections just came back.

    I have used herbs a lot in cooking, lotions, lip balms, and healing salves. I am not sure what to give my dog that he can ingest that will help with these problems and not hurt him.

    Thank You,

    1. Hi Lynette,

      To answer your questions I have to ask a few questions :>)...

      Have you tried a homemade food that is grain-free? something like the one in this recipe

      Did you try commercial dog food that is grain-free and without chemical preservatives? One that has ingredients very similar to this...
      Boneless chicken, chicken meal, chicken liver, whole herring, boneless turkey, turkey meal, turkey liver, whole eggs, boneless walleye, whole salmon, chicken heart, chicken cartilage, herring meal, salmon meal, chicken liver oil, chicken fat, red lentils, green peas, green lentils, sun-cured alfalfa, yams, pea fiber, chickpeas, pumpkin, butternut squash, spinach greens, carrots, Red Delicious apples, Bartlett pears, cranberries, blueberries, brown kelp, licorice root, angelica root, fenugreek, marigold flowers, sweet fennel, peppermint leaf, chamomile, dandelion, summer savory, rosemary

      Have you tried him on a raw food diet?

      Let me know which of the above you have tried.


      If you have not done so already here are some additional things you should do...


      Add probiotics to his diet. Most probiotic supplements are not worth the money that the cost. I use real food - yogurt, kefir ( or fresh sauerkraut ( If you do want to use a probiotic supplement make sure it meets the qualifications in this article

      TWO - Make sure he is taking in sufficient Omega-3 fatty acids

      THREE - A daily dose of Organic Unpasturized Apple Cider Vinegar

      FOUR - Organic Unpasturized honey - dosage is here

      FIVE - Turmeric

      SIX - Coconut Oil

      SEVEN - herb, Cats's Claw


      Colloidal Silver - ingested course of treatment as per this article

      Topical application Colloidal Silver as well but please also read this article

      Have you had him checked for Immunoglobulin A (IgA) deficiency? If he has this condition he might benefit from one of the following products:
      - IAG, or;
      - Colostrum Immune Formula, or;
      - Cytozyme-THY
      Which you choose depends on which works for him - you would have to test each separately. Your vet should be able to get these products for you.

      Hope this helps your little fella, Cheers, K

  17. Karen,

    We tried commercial grain free food. The raw food only had rice.
    we had tried it with oatmeal and then stopped. He has not had raw food.
    I do not believe he has been lga deficiency. I'll check for sure. He does have a boarder line thyroid problem. No meds.

    Thank You,

  18. Rice and oatmeal are triggers for candida.

    Border-line thyroid...

    Thyroid problems are often triggered by endocrine disruptors in:
    #1 Commercial dog food (particularly those containing corn, soy, also other grains, fish meal...

    #2 Chemical based flea, tick, heartworm, worm etc. preventatives and treatments including spot-on, spray, collars, dips, tablets/pills etc.

    #3 Ingredients in pet shampoos, rinses, toothpastes,

    #4 Toxins and carcinogens in household cleaners, herbicides, pesticides


    Suggest you follow advice I gave above plus

    Suggest you make homemade food - you can try my grain-free recipe

    Suggest you don't use any chemical-based household cleaners - use pet friendly ones instead

    Try not to give chemical-based insect/parasite preventatives - I have a entire series of articles on that you can read, ditto for shampoo and dental care.

    1. FYI some in-depth info on a few endocrine disruptors...

      Endocrine disruptors and toxins
      Corn and soy -

      Chemical based preservatives -

      Ethoxyquin -
      Other ingredients to avoid -

  19. karen having a few problems with my 2 gsds meisha is only 3 half yeras old sasha is 2 year old white gsd really her the problem is see in the past she suffered bleeedin ulcers ans as a pup her and meisha was playin and meisha big bitch and banged in to her whn she was apup bt showed no signs of being sore so i never thought nothin bt the problem has occoured abut year ago running vets etc bt cant giv her nothin for the pain as it may start ulcers up again !! so i was advised to use munka honey alafla alvoe juice and it has helped alot thank god bt problem now is whn she is out excrising with me and the other 2 gsds she run and run wont stop bt after it she bes in alot pain and i regused excrise 2 half hour then later on that nyt another half a hour and she wets herself without nowin as she sleeps now not at all times does this happen bt i was wandering is their any of them herds and spices i can use to help her pain i be 2 vets all time with her and tey said the problem was under lyin frm the passed injurey with meisha bt honeslty she never once showed me she was soar till year ago any help be grateful i can use without using the drugs of vets that isnt good for her many thanks

    1. Mix the following into her food...

      Fresh or frozen finely chopped cranberries to help support her bladder and kidneys - 1/4 cup a day.

      Concentrated cherry extract - you can buy it in gel capsule form or liquid. Give her two capsules a day or 2 x 1/4 tsp a day

      Coconut oil ½ teaspoon for every 10 lbs of body weight once daily

      Cod liver oil ½ tsp per day

      Turmeric 1 tsp per day

      Don't let her drink any water an hour before bedtime.

      Cheers, Karen

  20. just seein your answer back to me karen !!!! i hav sterted her on turmeric powder frm supermarket as i couldnt gt organic !!! i also started her on organic extra virgin oil 2 day well i fed tem all it and tey loved it the cocunt lol bt i will for defiently gt the rest off the stuff that u hav advised me on karen many thx karen u help is so grateful to me !!! is it ok two use turmeeric powder frm super market as i cnt gt orgain stuff here many thx karen x

    1. Your welcome :>) Yes, if you cannot find organic you can use supermarket turmeric. You can also order organic from an on-line organic herb/health food supplier. Cheers, K!

  21. karen sori again i got dried cranberries today at supermarket cranberry coast dried berries and unsure if i can use tem or did i gt the wrong or rite ones!!! as the nuntrition information per 100g is energy is 1511kj /357kcal protein is 0.2 carbohydrate 83.7 of which sugarsis 69.3g fat 0.1g fibre 7.8g sodium 0.01g are these safe to use karen sori many thanks :)

    1. Most dried cranberries have sugar added to them - I think the ones you purchased do have added sugar - check the ingredients list. Judging from the nutritional info you posted above looks like they added a lot of sugar. If they do have added sugar don't feed them to her.

      Use unsweetened fresh, frozen or dry cranberries finely chopped :>) You can also use unsweetened cranberry juice. Cheers, K

  22. many thx again karen i really was un sure when i got tem and gt home at read the info i kina didnt think the sugars was high many thx again karen cheers !! :)

  23. sori karen forgot 2 menton to you last comment !!! sashas well tey all do gt soar ears sometimes bt sashas has been playin her up last few days i hav used ear canal drops bt was hurtin her i was wandering can i use the organic extra virgin oil non ( gmo ) cocnut oil two ease really sori karen for bothering you you hav been a great help to me and my gsds many thx karen x :)

    1. use organic unpasturized apple cider vinegar (ACV) as directed in this article


      Colloidal Silver as per this article

      Coconut oil is OK for casual cleaning of the ear but if there is an infection present you need to use ACV or even better colloidal silver.

      Have a good nite :>)

  24. hello karen me again !!! i cant get colloidal silver here tryed every were guess i have to get it online along with a few things !!! i was wandering i started using fresh lemon today just few drops start off with !!! and some bart fennel seeds not organic tho !!! hard to grt any thing organic here i was wandering am i doing ok by adding this to their food and is it safe so scared now as i read up that lemon not good for dogs hope i dnont start up her ulcers again am panicing here karen as i give all three shephards som of each not much tho like i said above plz can u get back to me asap many thx and the fennel seeds say may contain wheat and mustard will i not give to tem or will i give to them plz karen any advise did i do wrong or rite plz and many thx again :)

    1. The fresh lemon will not harm them - read this

      The non-organic fennel will be fine :>)

    2. i read tthis well tey seem to like the lemon bt tey both throw up last nyt except sasha she her appite nt great dno if am doing afing wrong ? matbe fennel seeds dno ? bt sasha was only one wasnt sick tho i giv it other couple days to see how tey gt on am i doing rite just bt just slicing the lemon and squezzinf few drops in can i keep it in the fridge and how long will it last 4 ? many thx karen susanna :)

    3. Hi Susanna,

      You should only introduce one new item to a dog's diet at a time. That way if something causes an adverse reaction you know exactly what triggered the issue.

      A few drops of lemon in a bowl full of water would be an unusual trigger for a problem. A cut lemon that is kept in a refrigerator is good for up to a week.

  25. well tey all been good karen so far today i new when i wrote to you reg the matter that i usualy only do introduce one btut compleatly for got doind it yesterday bt i will no from noe on many thx karen sasha form reallly great and meisha,s full a beans sirus just a we nutter only a pup tho 9 months lol many thanks frm all of them two i no frm now on just learing all new adding herbs spices only usin the orgain extra virgin oil aprox 2 half weeks can see a great differance in all tem coats amazin pure soft floffy no dog odour even tho tey be kept in doors bt uno way tey still hav that doggy smell nearly all gone cant thank u enuf karen for helpin me reg my gsds many thx susanna frm IRELAND :)

    1. You are welcome Susanna ❀ᵔᴥᵔ❀ German Shepherds are beautiful dogs - my three German Shepherds over here in Canada send their best paw hugs to your German Shepherds over there in Ireland :>)

  26. awk many thx karen how can i send you a picture of tem to you!!! and you to send all your pack all love frm IRELAND frm mine x and me two x

  27. Just found your site ... LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!! :-)

    I'm looking for a natural way to treat my 10-yo / 8 lb shihtzu's dental decay in her lower back molars. She's already lost all her upper teeth (except her two fangs) --- DO NOT FEED POPCORN TO DOGS!!! I don't want her put on antibiotics and prefer a holistic treatment instead. I am willing to have them pulled as a last resort so she'll start eating like she did a couple of weeks ago.

    She also has some rather large lumps and some smaller ones, too, on her belly.and chest. She is intact and was never bred. She doesn't seem to be in obvious pain, but if I can't treat the lumps myself then the best I can do is continue loving her and keep her as comfortable as possible. Surgery (expense) is just not an option.

    I wish you were in Fort Worth cause I'd already be there to see you, so I'm hoping you may have a suggestion on how to treat her teeth and her belly lumps (notice I'm avoiding the C word?) Many, many thanks to all you do for our furry children! Lucy 8a

    1. Hi Lucy...

      For the Lumps
      Follow all of the recommendations (and read the links) provided in his article

      For her Teeth
      This article

      Cheers, K

    2. P.s. Lucy - regarding popcorn or any other form of corn for dogs...

  28. Almost forgot one more key item ... my shihtzu, Mitzi, is on a twice-daily dose of cyclosporene administered in organic unrefined coconut oil for dry eye syndrome (her vet uses olive oil, and her previous vet used (yuck) vegetable oil. I give her one drop per eye, twice a day. I was hoping by using coconut oil, I would be able to reduce the frequency but her eyes become matted with mucus fairly quickly (less than a day) if I don't keep her on schedule. She is partially blind due to damage caused before she was diagnosed. (She was diagnosed when I took her in to treat a facial rupture under her eye caused by massive gum infection that went into her sinuses, from what I understand). I don't want her to ever go through that again!

    1. You need to fix her diet to build her health up from the inside out, supporting a strong immune system, overall health, eliminating toxins and supporting eye health.

  29. Is it safe to use the pure vanilla diluted in 1/2 with water for mosquito spray topically

    1. Don't use vanilla. Read these articles for safe recipes...

      DIY Natural, Herbal Homeopathic Flea, Tick, Mite, Mosquito Repellent Sprays, Rubs, Dips for Dogs and Cats
      In this article:
      Recipes to make your own all natural, non-toxic, herbal and homeopathic flea, tick, mosquito repellent topical spray, dips and rubs...

      DIY Natural, Herbal, Homeopathic Flea, Tick, Mosquito Spot-On and Collar Drops for Dogs and Cats
      In this article:
      Recipes to make your own all natural, non-toxic herbal, homeopathic Spot-on and Collar Drops to repel fleas, ticks, mosquitoes;
      1. The following drop recipes can be applied to:
      2. Your dog’s and cat’s collar;
      3. Applied on the fur, between your dog’s and cat’s shoulder blades and at the base of his/her tail…

      DIY Natural, Herbal, Homeopathic Dewormers for Dogs and Cats
      In this article:
      1. How to keep your dog’s or cat’s immune system strong – your companion animal’s
      natural defence against parasites;
      2. Foods to include in your dog’s or cat’s diet to support deworming;
      3. DIY natural, herbal, homeopathic dewormers.

      Foods That Help Your Dog, Cat Naturally Repel, Eliminate Infestations of Insects, Parasites
      In this article:
      Supplementary Food Stuffs That:
      You can add to your dog’s and cat’s daily diet to help your companion animal’s immune system and body naturally repel insects and parasites;
      Fight infestations of insects, parasites, and;
      Associated diseases;
      Additional Precautions to Ensure a Healthy Immune System

  30. karen susanna i tryed makin up the rootius tea on the three tonight for their water just to see if they would drink i use one tea bag boiled hot water let it cool natularly sasha would not take it!!!! bt other two did i used a pinch of cinnimon to. it aswell is it ok to do it like that many thx karen x o sori karen is their any other way i can add it to her meal if dosnt take it gona try her later again bt any tips would be grateful x

    1. Hi Susanna - you can also add the tea directly to their food bowl. At meal time put their food in their bowl, and then just add the tea to their bowl. That is what I do, I also add homemade chicken stock - you can find the recipe for the chicken stock in this article Your dogs will like that!

  31. karen how much can i use and is one tea bag enuf or more is it still ok to use as drinkin water once a day sasha took som not much bt she went bck took another drink so think she gona like it can i still use the extra virgin olive oil trumic rosmary feenal seeds still all toghter o i forgot karen the lemon aswell many thx xx can i put the stuff tey dont drink in fridge ? if so 4 how long xx mixed all together xx

    1. You can give them as much Rooibos as they would like to drink in a water bowl. For the meals I add 1/4 cup to my German Shepherds' food, I just pour it over their food in the bowl. I also pour the olive oil on top of the food, cod liver oil, coconut oil, etc. Yes, you can put all of the ingredients you noted above together at the same time into their food. The tea will keep in the fridge for a week or more :>)

  32. Dear Karen,
    I give my dogs everything you have written here.. beneficial stuff of course. I dont give him the teas though.. I wanted to ask you is garlic powder ok if say i dont give him fresh garlic in the quantum you have specified here and just sprinkle little garlic powder would that do ? and would it also be the same with the ginger paste or powder ?


    1. Hi Nirav, Garlic and ginger powder are OK for him but in powdered form the herb and spice do not have the same health benefits that using fresh garlic and ginger have as drying and processing causes some loss of efficacy :>)

  33. Thank you very much for your website. I brought home a rescue dog from a shelter, and have been feeding him based on your food suggestions. I noticed he smells so much better. Does not have the musky "doggy" smell he came home with. Much more neutral. Just cause I live with dogs doesn't mean I want my house to smell like dogs.

  34. I fed my golden boy age 2 years raw. Should I incorporate the herbs you mention into his food?

  35. hi karen susanna here!! i have beig using turmic feenal seeds rosmary roobitos tea basil etc on my dogs and its been all dryed herbs and spices i was wandein if i used fresh herbs do i hav to indurtuice again every 4 days or can i countinue to just use all same time many thx karen x

    1. Hi Susanna :>) Fresh herbs would be even better and no need to introduce them slowly you could go ahead and intro them at the same time, pawhugs, K

    2. many thanks karen i bought fresh rosmary and fresh basil 2 day i was wandering as the date on it isnt long can u freeze it or would it take the godness out of it and how much in fresh do i give tem ? as i have been using dyred,just we bit confused karen :) many thx and many thanks and love from meisha, sasha. sirus. and me 2 for your help :) and sori 4 annoyin you karen x

    3. Hi Susi, you can freeze the herbs and no degradation of value will occur as long as you use them within a reasonable amount of time - i.e. a month. pawhugs...

  36. hi karen is fresh oregano ok to give to my gs as i bought it by mistake just wat to no b4 i use many thx susanna x

  37. karen two of my gsds are rubbin away at their eyes and have a rash in their bellies and are scratching away the only thing i have used new is ginger powder and i was wandering could tey hav a reaction to it as with the other herbs and spices i have bein using tey never took no recation i dno if this is the problem and i dno wat 2 do i ned ur help karen plz their eyes look so soar am bathing it with tea bags at the moment bt the rash is very bad in one of my gs privite part am so sori 4 bothering you karen can u help me and is their any thing i can use to ease them frm scratching !!! i am useing som extra virgin cocnut oil on it as its pure am i doing rite karen !!! :( can u sugguest anything i can bath tem with to the areas affected many thx karen xx

    1. Sounds like an allergic reaction to something that they have come into contact with in their environment. As the only new herb that you have introduced is ginger it is a possible primarily if you are using non-organic ginger in which cause pesticide/herbicide or other containment residue could cause a problem. For the belly you can apply organic unpasturized apple cider vinegar and then after application of ACV apply aloe vera or organic unpasturized honey or coconut oil. You can also give them a few doses of wither Quercetin or Benedryl

      To detox you can use milk thistle or licorice - see my articles on both

    2. karen i cant get ACV here !!! will i stop the ginger altogether to see if that is the problem!? can it do any damage as its not organic!!!panicing now!!! all i have here is the organic extra viegin cocnut oil non gmo can i apply that to the affected areas wat about the eyes tho so sori karen about this and a happy new year frm all of us here for 2014 god bless and thanks 4 ur help karen x

    3. If not organic it may simply cause a reaction due to pesticide or herbicide residue. Yes apply coconut oil to the affected areas. For the eyes use one of the eye washes provided in this article

  38. Hi Karen,

    One of my dog's is a beagle mix & is huge like a bulldog. He is over weight & is on Thyrozine 0.5 mg 2 x daily. I have been feeding raw since last Sept. He has a tumer on his hip that was removed last year & is coming back. It was a softball size. He has trouble getting up & moving around. The tumor was benign. When he bark's, he shake's his ear's like it hurt's his ear's. I am giving him tumeric in coconut oil & 500mg chlorella a day. His shot's were due last fall & I decided to end all vaccination's & heartworm & flea & tick control for all 4 of my dog's. Can you suggest some thing's please? I am going to check out your DIY diet also, because my 2 poodle's are so very finiky! Thank you! Just found your site today & cannot wait to read everything! I am signed up for rawroundup(DNM) & am wondering if I made the right choice???

    1. Yes I can make suggestions. I would require some additional info.

      Has the veterinarian confirmed hypothyroidism hence the Thyrozine or is the vet simply prescribing it to reduce weight (which Thyrozine cannot and will not do). I would need to know what raw food he is on and anything else you are feeding him other than what you have mentioned above. I can then suggest appropriate items. You will need to purchase consultation time.

      As to the rawroundup (DNM) it may or may not be worth while - hard to say unless you have a list of the veterinarians, companies and their associated interests - i.e. who they are affiliated with (do they have an angle and agenda to sell product = subjectivity and bending the truth to suit, or is the information provided truly objective).

  39. Hi Karen
    My dog Molly is a rescue dog; she is 13 yrs old, a German shepherd mix and weighs abt. 60 lbs. She has never been tested, but I was told she is allergic to grass and fleas, she has arthritis, a sensitive stomach and a non-cancerous tumor on her rear hip that’s about 5” wide. Her allergies were manageable until about 4 months ago. Her appetite has gone down and she has lost abt. 5 lbs., she is constantly scratching everywhere; her ears, (I think she may have an ear infection) feet, rear end and tail are all completely raw from scratching and biting. She is moving very slowly and acts like it hurts to move. All the vet would do was give her more of the same flea meds she was already taking every month. I stopped her meds 2 mths ago and tried a no grain diet with Blue dog food for 6 weeks (it was recommended), it helped some with the scratching. the last couple of days she has been eating Pedigree wet dog food (No one around me sells a better food) I found your recipe for no-grain food that I am going to try but, I need help with the herbs and spices, there are so many, I’m not sure what all to try.


    1. Hi Donna, I would be happy to help you with the herbs, and for Molly's conditions there are in additional simple natural topical treatments, some simple nutraceuticals that she should be on which will greatly help her without costing you a fortune.

      I will need a list of the items that you know her stomach is sensitive to, I will need to know of any conventional drugs, supplements and/or shampoos, dental care products etc. that currently have her on.

      You can email me at if you would like to have a treatment plan for her. You will likely require 60 minutes of my time - I can confirm that once I have the rest of the information from you.

    2. Thank you so much Karen, as soon as I get the paper work together I will send it all to you.

  40. Hi, first off, your blog is an amazing wealth of knowledge and I am so grateful that you have put all this out there!

    I have a 9-year old male ShihTzu with a sensitive stomach and yeast issues. In fact, he has just been diagnosed with a full-body yeast infection that has apparently been building for years :( I have tried several times to make him homemade food, but it seems that whenever I do, he ends up with very loose stools that are a mess in the yard, on his bum, and unfortunately sometimes in the house. As soon as I go back to a kibble, his poo firms up again. However, I am having a hard time finding a grain-free dry food that also does not have potato, which I think might be feeding his yeast issues. I just recently got him this one: (the salmon variety) which looks good with all the herbs and antioxidant ingredients, but still has potato. That aside, I was hoping to boost his immune system with several of the herbs you recommend here in an effort to kick start his little body into fighting the yeast off (as well as an aggressive body treatment with a close shave, regular baths and ACV rinses) but I am wondering if that will be too much for him considering what is already in the food? He currently has plain 3.5% organic yogurt (2 Tbsp) for breakfast with 1/4 tsp ground flax and a couple of blueberries, and I was planning to add ground cinnamon once I order the true ceylon variety. I was thinking I could drizzle his dry food at dinner with olive or coconut oil mixed with several of the above herbs once I've slowly introduced them all to his diet, but I am now wondering if that might be too much of a good thing? I don't want to overdo it.

    Thank you for your time!

    1. I would NEVER recommend a Nutro product becasue they are terrible. The one in particular you are looking at has multiple serious issues as all of their products do.

      I can put together a Diet/Wellness guide for you. You need to do more than boost his immune system - his eliminatory system needs immediate and ongoing support to reduce irritation and inflammation, the yeast infection must be addressed, and the root cause.

      Critical information that I require from you:
      Current supplements if any;
      Conventional medications/drugs if any;
      Alternative medicines if any;
      Prescription or off-the-shelf insect and parasite preventatives if any;
      Vaccination schedule - are you vaccinating annually?
      Any other known health issues - chronic conditions etc.

      The cost of putting his diet/wellness plan together will be between 100.00 and 200.00 dollars. I can only confirm exact cost once I have the information noted above. You can email me if you are serious about engaging my service.

    2. Well this is horribly disappointing news. I thought the Nutro food was a good one and he seems to like it, plus it doesn't irritate his stomach or cause poo problems. Very disappointing to hear it is crap :(

      Other than the yeast infection he is very healthy, happy and playful. He is not currently on any supplements, drugs, topical treatments, or anything. The vet wanted us to give him Fluconazole for the yeast and I refused. We are also not using the antibiotic they gave us for his ears at this point, rather keeping them clean and clear, and hoping an immune boost will help clear them up too. I used to use ACV in them but that seemed to irritate him more than anything.

      If your wellness plan would include homemade food for him, I don't think I would go for it, because as I said it has NEVER worked for him digestionally, and I think actually where these yeast issues may have started. Plus I'm a busy mom and about to have another baby in May, and probably won't have time or energy to embark on that route again, unfortunately. If the plan would include a recommended dry food and supplements, then it may be something I am interested in.

      Thank you again!

    3. Oh, and he has had all his "recommended" vaccinations as a puppy, ad was getting annual rabies boosters until this year. His last one was Jan 2013.

    4. I just read your post on dog kibble and I think I am going to cry! He has been on one brand or another of "fish" food for about the past 6 years (other than the times I was trying homemade) and I had no idea that there might be actual carcinogens mixed into the "fishmeal." Horrifying.

    5. I will email you today. Thank you again for all your time here :)

    6. My approach IS holistic. A term which is much mis understood and misused by a very large sector of the industry.

      Holistic includes the fact that I consider many factors including my client's life style.

      There would be zero value in insisting that a client:
      1) feed homemade when the client has no time to prepare such food;
      2) feed commercial raw food when that was an approach that the client was not comfortable with.

      I look for the best solution to suit the person and the dog - that is part of being holistic in the true meaning of the word :>)

  41. Hi Karen! This page has been so wonderfully informative! Thank you... My baby girl is 8yrs old and has a thyroid condition. She weighs approximately 100 lb and is currently taking Soloxine. Is there anything that would be good for her diet that you would recommend or anything I should stay away from due to conflict with her meds? - Lisa Rae

    1. Hi Lisa,
      I would be pleased to advise you. I would need to know what her current diet is comprised of (food, treats, supplements), any other medications she is on - such as veterinarian prescribed insect and parasite preventatives, and if she has any other health issues, allergies. Once I have this information I can put together diet/supplement plan for you. Cost will be between 100.00 and 200.00 dollars. I need the information above in order to confirm cost. You can email me if you are serious about engaging me to put this together for you.

    2. Ok, great! Thank you.

  42. Hello, I just happened upon your site and am wondering if you can help me. My 10 year old female pug/Boston terrier mix had 2 tumors removed in Dec, which turned out to be cancer. One was removed from her face near her eye, where she scratched it bloody constantly, and the vet said she could not get it all out unless she'd cut out her cheek and maybe eye. The one on her face is growing back quickly (now marble size) and if it gets large again I don't know what we'll do. I bought hemp oil today at the recommendation of the local whole foods lady, and applied it topically 3 times now, as well as dribbling a tsp. over her evening food. She's acting oddly, won't get off my lap (this is not like her), seems restless. I don't know, after reading your warning about Hemp Oil, that I want to continue using it on her. What can I give her to shrink her tumors? There are several on her chest under the skin, as well as the one on her face, near her eye. She doesn't seem bothered by any but the face one, which she's already begun scratching (but maybe she was feeling the hemp oil on it?). I would like to stop the growth of the face tumor in its tracks, can you help me? Thank you so much! - Whitney G.

    1. Hi Whitney, yes I can help you. Although the hemp oil is not hurting your girl it is also not helping and is not what I would have advised you to put on her face simply becasue it would not be effective for this issue. Diet and topical treatment should be designed to address the cancer and symptoms. Yes I can put together a diet/wellness plan for you.

  43. Hi I have an 8 year old boxer who is on phenobarbital for new onset seizures. We stopped all vitamins and supplements for the first 2 weeks and just started giving him the glucosamine,ginger,turmeric and brewers yeast tabs again for the last 4 days. Yesterday and today he started acting like he was going to have a seizure again but did not. My question is would these supplements counter act the phenobarbital?

    1. Yes - phenobarbital interacts with blood thinners - turmeric and ginger are among other things blood thinners. There are natural anti-seizure herbals - but you are using a conventional drug that has many interactions with other conventional drugs and alternative medicines.

  44. hi, i have an 2 year old springer spaniel that 6 months ago had part of her jaw removed due to an acanthomatous amaloblastoma epulis, before the surgery i was giving her garlic, tumeric as well as cooking her food. the surgery went well with clean margins and now i feed her dried dog nuts,she gets raw meat once a week for a treat. i was looking for some advice on vitamins and herbal supplements to keep her in the best health possible.

    thank you for your time.

    1. I would be pleased to assist you via my consultation services

  45. hello Karen its susanna .. its been a while from I was talking with you I hope all is good with you ... I got colloridal silver yesterday and am on sure how to use it , do I dulate it and if yes how much water do I use, and is it ok to use it when then are getting coconut oil trumic manuka honey acv daily, just need advice on this many thanks again Karen, I sure hope all your pack is doing well, love from my pack and me god bless xxx

    1. Hi Susanna - Silver is safe to use with the herbs and other items you are feeding. For instructions on how to use the silver go to my article on colloidal silver...

  46. could you please help me, my dog Charlie 9yrs Lab/Chow mix has Cushing's his weight 90bls I want to properly treat this, so he can have a good quality of life. my husband and I love him so much, he does not deserve this. Charlie has brought joy to all that knows him. he's our son. please help me with a natural plan.

    1. I would be happy to help you with a custom designed holistic diet, nutrition, wellness plan ( ) for Charlie - you can email me at

  47. Hi Karen! Thank you so much for sharing this lovely information. I'm so glad I found your website. This is really helpful!

    I might have missed reading it though but are there herbs/spices that prevent UTI? Or if they are somewhat already displaying some symptoms of it, what should I give to help treat it? I have an Anatolian Shepherd (mixed) 30-40 lbs male. His urine color is deep yellow, almost orange. I haven't seen any blood though. He doesn't frequently urinate or break house training or scream in pain or anything like those with UTI do but I'm a little paranoid that he may develop one without me noticing.

    I don't want to rely too much on conventional medicine as much as possible. I would rather give him healthy food that will guarantee improvement for his health. I'm fairly sure he doesn't have one yet but I'm really worried please help. What should I do?

    1. Recommended course of action to address his current condition and long term health

  48. Hi Karen, thank you very much for sharing for your knowledge. This information is amazing.

    When you refer to tsp/tbsp, are you referring to heaped/slightly heaped/leveled.

    Thank you

  49. Can dogs and cats eat Scoby and or drink Kombucha? I curious because I know it can be extremely beneficial to other animals such as chickens and ducks. I have a Pom that may have cancer and I want to begin feeding him a home cooked diet and recently started brewing my own Kombucha as it much more cost effective than buying it by the bottle for 8 bucks a bottle.

  50. Hi! We spent almost a thousand dollars last month on our little Pappillion for 3 days at the vet's office for what she said was toxic blood. She said he lost clotting ability. She had him on IV fluid and antibiotics , then he pulled out of it. We searched the house for any type of toxin, watched him in the yard, saw nothing out of hte ordinary. He is NOW showing the same symptoms: drooling, walking off balance, tongue hanging out, very thirsty, lethargic. I gave him crushed basil in a small amount of olive oil in a dropper, then baby food bananas; we thought if it was clotting, then vitamin K1 was what i read could help. I could not find it anywhere so i researched sources. He seems to be pulling out of it again; we just could not spend anopther 1000 dollars at the vet. Do you think his food might be toxic? He eats a purina brand food and Pupperoni. we arte thinking he has a digestive or blood disorder or a food toxin. Cannot imagine what is making him so sick. He is almost two and this never happened before last month. He does eat lean chicken breast and shredded cheeze. other than that, we rarely give him"people" food.

    1. Recommended course of action to help your dog

  51. Hi Karen, I have a 6 year old male German Shepherd that hasn't been neutered. Recently he started having a bloody discharge( I see drops of blood here a d there on the floor). Doesn't have blood in the urine, doesn't seem to strain, is not lethargic. Any suggestions please?

    1. A consultation would be required to properly address your GSDs condition.

  52. Hi Karen - I want to THANK YOU for your site - I have pointed many friends to it as you are a brilliance of knowledge on the holistic eating for dogs. I will continue to read and absorb all you have to give, wish I lived in Canada, would love to meet you in person.
    Again thanks, Lisa


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Questions may be answered if, and when I have time to do so.

PLEASE NOTE – The true meaning of holistic…

Food, herbs, nutraceuticals and alternative medicines are NOT ‘holistic’ they are a substance and MAY, or may NOT be ‘NATURAL’. It is important to keep in mind that the supplement industry is just as unethical as BigPharma, the Food and Pet Food Industry, and unfortunately many veterinarians.

If you use a ‘natural’ substance (i.e. an herb) you are using a natural substance, this is not synonymous with holistic.

Holistic is a way of approaching life, and within that - overall health, and wellbeing.

Please do not expect a natural substance to miraculously remedy a health or behavioral situation. A natural substance may be used to treat symptoms. However, if the factors causing the underlying issue are not properly identified, analyzed and addressed you do not have a remedy.

Remedy requires a comprehensive approach that identifies root cause, seeks to remove items that trigger, cause or otherwise contribute to issues, and builds a complete, and detailed approach to immediate treatment, remedy, and maintenance of long-term health = holistic.

I offer extensive consultation services - Holistic Diet, Nutrition Wellness and Holistic Behavioral, for people that are serious about looking after their dogs and cats holistically. If you want to engage my services you can contact me via email or phone.

If you are looking for additional free advice, please refer back to the articles on my site, do not contact me via email or phone - personalized service is for my clients / patients only.

Wishing your dog and cat the best of health!

the Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer
Holistic Behaviorist - Dogs
Holistic Diet Nutrition Wellness Adviser – Dogs and Cats

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1-613-293-3707 (cell)

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