Herbal Tinctures for Pets - September 2017

By Klaus Ferlow, Vancouver, BC

Brown dog

Because all plants contain thousands of chemicals with thousands of biologic activities, dosages can vary and still be effective. With so many chemicals present one can hardly miss in seeking a single chemical, even at levels as small as parts per billion that would contribute to the resolution of an ailment. It is believed that our bodies like those of pets and domesticated animals can "reach" into this herbal potpourri and find at least traces of a compound, which will help resolve a medical problem. When a Veterinarian prescribes a "magic bullet" solution for an ailment it contains only selected chemicals. This "magic bullet" can be very effective if the diagnosis and the prescription match. However, an herbal remedy with its thousands of chemical compounds has a much larger chance of offering a useful biologic activity.

In other words, the herbal "shotgun" may be more effective than the "magic bullet". Unlike many drugs, herbs are relatively safe and gentle. They are very forgiving and offer a much greater margin of error and fewer adverse effects. However, one very important thing to remember in dealing with herbals is that they are slower acting and will take a bit longer to work. The most common cause of failure when using herbs is giving up to soon. Time and consistent use are an herb’s "best friend". When looking at specific dosages for pets there are two important considerations:

  1. the weight of the animal
  2. the type of illnesses (acute, long term, restorative etc.)

These are major elements when considering the dosage use. Generally a 1:5 ratio tincture made form dried material is often equivalent in strength to 1:1 extracts made from fresh material. Most tinctures have a strength of 1:5 so a dose would equal 1 drop per pounds of the body weight up to 50 pounds then 1 drop for every 4 pounds after.

For acute problems the dosage would not be increased but the number of dosages given in a day would. For example: a maintenance dose would be twice a day and acute doses could be up to 4 - 5 times a day. These are the major benefits in using a premium quality Physician grade high potency liquid herbal tincture:

  1. the dose can easily be dropped directly on the pets food. No trying to force a pill or tablet down
  2. the closer a product is to be liquid state the more easily and effectively it is absorbed into the system
  3. the tinctures contain only purified water, grain alcohol and herbal extracts, no artificial fillers, colorants or other harsh hazardous chemicals etc.
  4. the products travel easily with you

This is a time of renewed interest in herbology and is applications for humans as well as pets and more Veterinarians treat animals holistically. More detailed information is readily available through books and the internet.

References: Complementary and Veterinary Medicine by Allen M. Schoen & Susan G. Wynn All You Wanted To Know About Herbs For Pets, by Mary L. Wulff-Tilford & Gregory Tilford.

Klaus FerlowKlaus's Bio: Klaus Ferlow, HMH (Honorary Master Herbalist, Dominion Herbal College, Burnaby, B.C., est. 1926), HA (professional Herbal Advocate Canadian Herbalist's Association B.C., Victoria, is a traditional herbalist, innovator, lecturer, researcher, writer, founder of Ferlow Botanicals, Vancouver, B.C., www.ferlowbotanicals.com now retired and Peter Ferlow is acting President, manufacturing/distributing herbal medicinal and personal care products with no harmful chemical ingredients to holistic practitioners and selected stores in traditional medicine in Canada and parts of USA since 1993, the company was founded in 1975. His educational articles about health, healing, herbs, nutrition have been published in health & women's magazines, newspapers, newsletter in Canada, United States, United Kingdom, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa in print and online and on the internet. Klaus founded in 2013 NEEM RESEARCH, Mission,, B.C. to protect and promote the precious healing gift of the Neem tree from India to humanity and with over 23 years experience working with Neem he published in 2016 the book "Neem - Nature's Healing Gift to Humanity", www.neemresearch.ca and is also a co-author of the book "7stepsdentalhealth.com" He is a member of the National Health Federation, Monrovia, Ca., International Herb Association, Jacksonville, Fl, United Plant Savers, Rutland, OH, Neem Foundation, Bombay (Mumbai), India and he can be contacted via neemresearch1@gmail.com - Klaus Ferlow Website - Email

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