Archive for the ‘Medicine’ Category

Spring is here, and if you have dogs, you know what means – FLEAS.

Ugh. The very thought makes me start itching.

I don’t know of anything that’s more frustrating. They annoy your babies…they annoy you…they multiply like crazy…they bite…they cause all sorts of skin irritations – they’ve got to GO.

But how do you get rid of them? If you give your babies chemicals, there are all sorts of adverse reactions that they can have from allergies & rashes to seizures & death (not to mention how it can affect you, your other pets & your children). In 2008, over 44,000 reactions presumed to be tied to spot-on (topical) products were reported by pet owners, veterinarians and other animal caretakers. Whether it’s topical or a pill, you’re inundating your furbaby with toxic chemicals when you don’t have to.  You’re essentially feeding them or rubbing INSECTICIDE on them. It’s poison.

Just a few of the ingredients in your average topical or pill are imidacloprid (which is an insecticide), fipronil (another insecticide), permethrin (hmm, another insecticide), methoprene (you guessed it) and pyriproxyfen (do I even have to say it?).  Still not convinced that this stuff is DANGEROUS for your babies? Read more HERE.

And I KNOW as a responsible pet owner that loves your pet, you’d NEVER want to intentionally poison them. Sadly, some of our vets are under the same influence as some of our doctors – Big Pharma. All they know to do is push pill after pill after topical solution after topical solution. It’s all “safe”, according to them. But the truth is, IT ISN’T. Stop the madness!

Here’s the good news – you don’t have to expose your pet to these toxins. You can SAFELY and EFFECTIVELY give them flea prevention that will not put them at risk. I know this to be true because last year, the fleas were INSANE in our backyard. My poor girls were scratching and scratching until I finally started to put a little liquid concoction in their food.  And within a few days, the scratching stopped. I went from picking off 10+ fleas a day to finding NONE. It was wondrous. We were gloriously flea free all summer.

Before I give you the super simple recipe, there are other things you can do, too. Make sure that your babies are eating quality – preferably ORGANIC – food. This will discourage fleas (& other ickies) from biting them because a healthy immune system will make your dog less tasty to them. (Fleas are very attracted to pets that eat a high amount of grains since it makes them quite “yeasty.”) You can also treat the yard with diatomaceous earth or with this Mosquito Barrier. There are essential oils that you can use either in a spray or on the dog’s collar that will keep fleas at bay, too. Do a quick search on Google – there is so much out there that you can try. You don’t need poison!

My girls get organic food & treats and are bathed & brushed regularly. They also get 1/4 tsp of this mixture in their evening food:

flea prevention 1

1 clove of garlic, 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar and 1 Tbsp of lemon juice. Mix in a saucepan with 1 cup water. Bring barely to a boil to infuse the water, cool, strain & put in a glass container to keep in the fridge. 1-20 pound dog – use 1/4 tsp…20-80 pound dog – use 1/2 tsp…80+ pound dog – use 1 tsp in food bowl each day. *Note* Do not give to puppies until they are at least 10-12 weeks old.

Give it a couple weeks. What will happen is that the scent will begin to come out of their skin. Don’t worry – YOU won’t smell it, but the fleas WILL, and it will discourage them from getting on the animal because they can’t stand the smell. Your baby will suddenly NOT be their favorite snack!

flea prevention 2

** Read this ** – THE GARLIC WILL NOT HURT YOUR PET. I can’t believe the amount of misinformation that is ‘out there’. I suppose if you fed your dog TWO HANDFULS of garlic all at once, it might affect them, but you’re not doing that. Garlic is very healthy for them. PLEASE read this blog by behaviorist and wellness adviser, Karen Rosenfeld, so that you can be informed – http://ottawavalleydogwhisperer.blogspot.com/2012/06/garlic-for-dogs-health-benefits.html

Don’t want to take her word for it? Read THIS and THIS and THIS. Feel a little better now? You should.

After you read these articles, if you are STILL not comfortable with the garlic for whatever reason, just omit it and use the apple cider vinegar and the lemon juice. It might take a few more days to start to repel the fleas, but it will be SO much better than poison! Your babies will thank you!

And speaking of babies, here are mine. They are my world.

henna jonesie for blog

While this blog has focused on flea prevention for DOGS, I haven’t forgotten our feline friends. Go here for great suggestions that won’t endanger their health!  They don’t need chemicals, either!

Hope everyone & their babies have a SAFE, NON-POISONOUS and FLEA FREE summer!


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Hopefully you read my previous post about the icky (and obviously unhealthy and dangerous) ingredients in the majority of pet foods, and hopefully you ran straight to the can/bag of your pet’s food and made sure that you were not feeding your pet that mess and endangering their health.

No? Let me repost a very important and helpful link: www.dogfoodproject.com. You can print out a small booklet that goes through all of the ingredients and assists you in determining what food is good or bad based on certain ingredients.

Go ahead; I’ll wait. *sits down with steaming cup of coffee and a few magazines*


Okay, now that we’ve addressed pet food, we need to look at pet medicine – flea & heartworm prevention to be exact.

Fleas (and ticks and such) make our pets miserable, and they can cause serious infections. We all know what heartworms can do; they can kill. Any person that cares for their pets knows that these two issues must be kept under control. Unfortunately, most vets have hopped onto the same bandwagon as our adult doctors – the pharmaceutical freight train of chemical poison. These pushers play on our lack of knowledge and our fear. Look around next time you go to the vet. I can guarantee you that you will see a jar – maybe 2 – of some heart infested with heartworms (and maybe a couple other jars). “Do you want your puppy to get this? Then you need to give them this pesticide as prevention.”

Well, they don’t say that last part, but they might as well because it’s TRUTH. Some popular brands of heartworm/flea prevention are Advantage, Capstar, Comfortis, Frontline and K9 Advantix (there are others).

Read this link for more in-depth information about the ingredients used in flea treatments:  www.apnm.org/publications/resources/fleachemfin.pdf . Not to mention the serious (and often deadly) side effects to your pet,  there are serious (and often deadly) side effects to YOUR CHILDREN that play with the pets. Read this article to discover that only the active ingredient is listed, and usually it’s a tiny percentage of the total. Read to discover the extensive testing that is required for the active ingredients versus the lack of testing for the “inert” which can make up as much as 90% of the total. Read how people have accidentally touched some of these “spot on” treatments and then touched their lips, only to find that their lips went numb!

Want some flea treatment alternatives?




** This is what I use for Henna ** www.fleafreeanimals.com  We have no flea problems. I *might* find one on her a couple times a month, if that. We do not see them in the house, either. A few drops daily in her food and water works wonders!

I know quite a few people that don’t do anything for heartworm prevention. Depending on how much of an “outside” dog yours is and the area that you live in, maybe this is ok. I live in Florida; Mosquito Headquarters, so I was torn about what to do. Heartworm prevention meds often have the same issues as flea prevention, but with the volume of mosquitos down here and the fact that Henna pottys outside all the time, I thought maybe I should do *something*. Those that don’t use anything *do* have their pets tested once a year (sometimes twice); this is key. After speaking with a holistic vet, my breeder and a lady that runs a holistic/natural boutique, I decided on Heartgard for the time being.

Granted, it’s not perfect, but it’s been around the longest *and* is the safest. For now, that’s what Henna is on. (It could change as I learn more and as more products come out.) She gets a chewable every 45 days. They say “monthly” because it’s easier for us to remember, but the medication is good for longer than that. I am always looking into alternatives, though. Here are a few:


www.onlynaturalpet.com (Do a search for heartworm.)


There are more. As always, do your own research!

This is an *excellent* site for all things regarding pets and their health: www.shirleys-wellness-cafe.com Spend some time reading; well worth it!

I know flea and mosquito control is a very sensitive topic. Yes, some dogs will not have problems, but other dogs DIE. Don’t assume yours will be in the former category. If you’ve read about your chosen method of prevention and feel confident that it’s safe, then by all means go with it. If this brings up some questions for you, however, I encourage you to search on Google and/or find a vet that utilizes both types of treatments (ie: is supportive of natural and holistic options) and play 20 questions.

Above all, be as informed as you can. Don’t rely on someone else’s opinion!

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Patsy L Holden M.A.

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