Today, I’m broaching the topic of animal herbalism, and sharing a little of what I’ve learned on the subject over the course of my research. Anyone who has a relationship with a pet or familiar knows, they’re not just animals– they are family. Finding natural herbal solutions to things like illnesses, nutritional deficiencies, skin problems and the like does not only apply to humans, but can benefit our pets and familiars as well!
I’ve grown up surrounded by animals my entire life, with pets ranging from horses to bunnies, cats to dogs, and chickens to cows. While this list below is mainly covering the more common household pets and furry friends, I encourage you to do some research if you have a different animal not covered in this post, and see what kind of herbs will help support its health! I’m a firm believer that everything we need to live a happy, healthy life can be found in our natural world, and that certainty extends to our animal friends as well. Take a look at the list below for a few animal-friendly herbs to get you started!
Pets + Familiars
|Alfalfa (dried)||Dogs||Daily protein supplement:
¼ teaspoon (small dogs)
½ teaspoon (medium dogs)
1 teaspoon (large dogs)
|Echinacea (powdered + fresh stems and leaves)||Cats, rabbits||Itch relief for inflamed areas:
Cats– 1 pinch daily on the spot or ¼ teaspoon daily in food
Rabbits– a few fresh stems and leaves on top of daily food serving weekly
|Calendula (ointment, oil or tea)||Dogs, cats (for use on cat’s face only, cannot be ingested)||Rashes, insect bites, eczema and sunburn:
1 topical application daily until healed
1 local application of tea or tincture (not ointment) daily until healed
1 application of Oregon grape, licorice root and calendula tincture daily
|Goldenseal (cooled tea)||Cats||Wound cleanser + itch relief:
1 local application daily
|Licorice root (low-alcohol tincture)||Dogs, cats||Arthritis:
1 drop of tincture per every 5 lbs, twice daily in food
|Chamomile (tea, fresh herb + glycerin-based tincture)||Dogs, rabbits, cats||Gentle sedative for nerves:
Dogs– ¼ tsp tincture per 30 lbs. every 2-3 hours
Rabbits– 2-3 stems of fresh chamomile when needed
Cats– ½ tsp tea made from dried chamomile
I hope you found this list helpful, and that it perhaps inspires you to do some more research on the topic! I’m always looking for more ways to bring herbalism into my everyday life, and using it to take care of our beloved furry friends is a fantastic way to do so. If you have any experience with using the herbs listed above, or any others, with your pets and animals, please leave a comment below and let us know! Learning is truly most rewarding when it’s a community effort.
Warm wishes and wisteria,