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Ancient science across the world has mentioned the miracles of herbs for their medicinal properties. It’s the most natural way to enhance one’s immunity, heal the body, increase the longevity of life and take care of overall well-being. Initially, herbs were mostly used to treat humans but with the ongoing progress in veterinary research, it has been positively concluded that they work wonders for our pets too!
Dr Pranjal Khandare, veterinarian at Wiggles.in says, “Herbs and Ayurvedic medicines have shown remarkable efficacy in treating a host of ailments in pets. Having worked closely on such cases, I am confident that they have opened gates to an entirely new universe of natural veterinary treatment.”
Closer home, Ayurveda has also taken veterinary care and medicine by storm. But how to know which herbs and ayurvedic medicines are safe and effective for pets?
Here’s a list of some herbs and ayurvedic medicines that are a boon for your pet’s health:
CBD: Cannabidiol is derived from the plant Cannabis sativa and its efficacy in treating inflammation, joint pains, arthritis and skin issues in pets is unparalleled. It has gained immense popularity among veterinarians who are prescribing this natural pain reliever more than ever. Case studies have shown heartwarming results in pets suffering from cancer by extending their lifeline. It is also a natural therapy against anxiety that comes due to separation and festivities. CBD oil for pets is now available to be used in both topical and oral forms although the dosage will vary as per the illness.
Hemp seeds: Hemp seed is also derived from the plant Cannabis sativa and is equally effective in treating inflammation and skin concerns. Rich in essential fatty acids and antioxidants, it nourishes and moisturizes the skin too. Hemp seed oil is also available in both topical and oral forms.
Catnip: Catnip is derived from the herb Nepeta cataria and is known for its aromatic properties that are pleasing to a cat’s senses. Dried leaves are used to excite the sensory neurons in cats that makes them active and playful. Nepetalactone is the oil that’s found in the leaves and it is responsible for treating issues like separation anxiety, indigestion and is safe to be given during the heat cycle as well. It has an antispasmodic effect that helps relax the muscles.
Turmeric: This Indian household herb has its roots in Ayurveda and has stood the test of time. It’s known for its anti-inflammatory properties that help heal wounds, cure internal injuries and increase bile production. Studies have shown it to be effective against preventing and treating cancer in pets too. Use a pinch of turmeric every time you cook food for your pet or mix it with water to create a paste to treat external wounds.
Tulsi/Holy Basil: Another herb that is widely trusted in India for human consumption, it is equally effective in treating pets. An ayurvedic medicine, it works in eradicating ringworms and fungal infections. It also combats the negative effects of stress, stabilizes blood sugar levels and works well for maintaining the overall well-being of pets. Tulsi works well in the raw form as well as when mixed with food. But how you include it in your pet’s diet will depend on their taste buds.
Nice: Nettle comes from the family of Urtica, an extremely nourishing herb that is not only delicious but is also a powerful medicine for dogs. 10 grams of dried nettle leaves will have proteins, calcium, phosphorus, iron, magnesium, beta-carotene, potassium, vitamins A, C, D and B complex. Since it’s filled with essential nutrients, nettle makes for a wholesome natural supplement for dogs.
Chamomile: A soothing herb, also known as Matricaria recutita is renowned for its calming properties. A safe herb in proportionate amounts, it is a natural sedative that helps relax the muscles, brings a state of calm and helps ease an upset stomach. Vets suggest including chamomile in the form of supplements especially for growing puppies who can experience separation anxiety.
Rosemary: Another aromatic herb, it can be safely used in a dog’s diet in any form (raw, powder, whole plant, tincture.) Packed with antioxidants, it fights and eliminates free radicals, prevents the formation of cancerous cells and strengthens cardiovascular health. Add it to your dog’s fresh food and let them enjoy a burst of health!
The list doesn’t end here! A lot of other herbs and ayurvedic medicines like calendula, ashwagandha, neem, oregano, sage, thyme, ginger deserve your pet’s attention. These offer a wide range of health benefits naturally. But remember, always consult your veterinarian before including them in their diet. Better, make healthy food choices that contain the above-mentioned herbs to always keep your pet in the pink of their health!
(The author is a Veterinarian Officer at Wiggles.in)
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Published on: Thursday, February 03, 2022, 08:46 AM IST