Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Herbs to Treat Heart Disease in Dogs and Cats

Hawthorn and DandelionHawthorn berries and Dandelion root in combination can be used to provide heart support for pets who have cardiac disease. The two herbs work synergistically to strengthen the heart muscle, improve circulation and as a diuretic to help eliminate edema (excess fluid build up in the body).

Heart Disease in Dogs - Congestive Heart Failure

There are two common types of canine heart disease.
Type one - the dog's heart valves lose their ability to close properly, causing abnormal blood flow.
Type two - the muscular walls of the heart become thin and weak.

Both conditions develop gradually and result in congestive heart failure (CHF). Approximately 3.2 million dogs in the United States are diagnosed annually with an age related or congenital form of heart disease and may be in heart failure.


Administration of Hawthorn & Dandelion can be given throughout the duration of some HeartWorm treatments and beyond the HWF treatment to strengthen the heart and help heal the damage heartworm can cause (talk to your vet first).

Feline Heart Disease - HCM (Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy)

The most common type of heart disease in cats is HCM, it is a heart disorder in which the left wall of the heart grows and thickens.

Hawthorn Berries - Modern research has proven hawthorn to be a valuable herb in the treatment of cardiovascular problems and promotes a healthy heart. It causes more blood flow to reach the muscles of the heart. Hawthorn can also help to reduce the incidence of angina, which is a spasm of the blood vessels and improve the smooth muscle walls of the rest of the circulatory system, improve blood pressure, improving circulation and treating symptoms of mild heart failure and reduces atherosclerosis. Hawthorn works by widening blood vessels, especially heart blood vessels, which results in increased heart blood flow.
Dandelion Root - Research has shown that Dandelion works very well as a diuretic. Research in Germany shows that it helps to detoxify the system and stimulate the production of bile by the gallbladder. Dandelion helps with water retention (edema), regulation of blood glucose, nausea, urinary tract infections, kidney and bladder stones, liver and gallbladder complaints, and loss of appetite. Unlike prescription drugs, dandelion is a natural diuretic that increases urine production by promoting the excretion of salts and water from the kidney, without depleting the body of precious minerals. It can also be used for pets with impaired kidney function.

Beneficial for Heart and Circulatory System
The root of the dandelion makes mannitol, which is beneficial in the treatment of heart conditions such as high blood pressure as well as promoting healthy circulation. Dandelion root also contains high levels of sodium that help balance electrolytes in the blood, uric acid levels and cholesterol levels.

Other Uses

The root of the dandelion has a rich concentration of sodium, which can eliminate toxins that have been acclimated in the body. Dandelion root works quickly to eliminate toxins from the body, by stimulating the kidneys. This removes toxins, purifies the blood and replaces any potassium that was lost.

Skin Diseases
Dandelion root has numerous healing benefits to the skin, which includes cleansing and improving the skin's texture. The root can also be used to treat skin conditions such as fungal infections, dermatitis, acne and migrant growths.

Dandelion root is beneficial for strengthening the gallbladder. When taken on a regular basis, its root may prevent gallstones from forming in the gallbladder. Its root is also beneficial for existing gallstones as it may help to aid in dissolving them, so they may be more easily eliminated out of the body.

You can use Hawthorn berry and Dandelion root in tincture form. Purchase an herbal combination formula. If you can not find a combined product, you can buy a bottle of each tincture and mix them together yourself. Dandelion root has a bitter taste so you will need to mask its flavor in an appealing treat. Right after dosing, feed the animal a regular meal.

Dandelion root increases the flow of bile, and should not be given to animals with an inflamed or infected gallbladder or blocked bile ducts.

Suggestions for Dosing -
Hawthorne/Dandelion Herbal Tincture

Under 3 lbs. 2 drops
3-10 lbs. 5 drops
11-20 lbs. 10 drops
21-150 lbs. 15 drops
151-250 lbs. 20 drops
251-300 lbs. 25 drops

Suggested Use: Administer the appropriate dose in number of drops as determined by the animal's weight. Given two to three times daily. Frequency of Use: 5 days on, 2 days off. This gives the body a chance to clear and work on its own.

Note: It is a good idea to introduce any herb slowly. Begin with half the recommended dose then over a few days increase the amount accordingly. This will allow your pet to adjust to the herb, while you monitor the results. This way, there are fewer if any adverse effects, such as tummy upsets or loose stools.

For the ultimate guide to using herbs for pets, visit Pet Remedy Charts. Developed to enable anyone to quickly and confidently treat their pet naturally at home. The charts are beautifully illustrated, double sided and packed with healing treatment strategies.

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