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Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Spring Time With Rover...Guest post from Doreen Simpkins


Please welcome our lovely members at Have a Happy Hound...using holistic methods to care for your dog. You will find more details on our website too.


At this time of year, along with thoughts of spring cleaning, clearing out of cupboards, and holidays in mind; many dog owners cast a critical eye over the family dog/s that may have become rather “ wild ‘n woolly” over the winter! Many owners are becoming more aware of the possible dangers of chemicals within such things as shampoo, flea/tick drops, worming products etc. & are looking for natural alternatives. I would recommend www.canine_health_concern.org  & www.GrandmaLovesTheDog.com  for information/support about canine health care & for their ethical products.
Happy Hound Grooming is a holistic, individual and flexible grooming service for the discerning and caring dog owner, “where every dog is a special dog”. Grooming is done on a 1-1 basis, using natural chemical free coat products, & where every dog has a free health check as part of the grooming service. Reiki can be used to calm nervous stressed dogs, & my experience in dog training, & with rescue dogs can help make the whole process as calm as possible.
What should dog owners be trying to achieve to keep their dog as healthy as possible for the year ahead? Well, with the mild winter which has just passed, & the milder spring weather we have had recently; flea/tick infestations may well be a problem in the months ahead.  Dogs that are fed a fully “raw” diet are less receptive to fleas/ticks, & the addition of small amounts of garlic to the diet, not only repel unwanted “visitors” but help support the dogs’ immune system, which in turn means the dog is better able to fight off infection. While garlic is a member of the onion family, which is poisonous to dogs, the selenium and other useful nutrients in it mean it is a very useful tool in the health/first aid kit. It can be used in granule, tablet or fresh format with the dosage adjusted to the size of the dog.
Further protection from fleas/ticks can be obtained from the use of Neem products. Neem is obtained from the bark of the Neem tree in India, where it has been used for hundreds of years as an effective protection against insect infestations. I use Neem shampoo when grooming, & as well as it’s anti flea properties, it provides a wonderful sheen to the coat. While there are many sites selling Neem products I use ( www.neemgenie.co.uk ) which in addition to it’s pet products has a wide range of human products which can be used to help eczema, psoriasis lice infestations etc. After treating the dog however, be sure that all bedding, beds & soft furnishings are also treated, otherwise a “repeat cycle” of infection will be set up. I have found the use of DE powder ( Diatomaceous Earth) obtainable from www.GrandmaLovesTheDog.com  to be very useful for kennels, beds, bedding etc. In fact for those dog owners who also keep hens, DE powder is a versatile product that can be used in hen houses, & dusted on hens to kill off any mite infections. In high risk areas using a Neem Pet Guard spray can help minimise the chances of infection although, it is best to check for any fleas/ticks, immediately after walks.
 There are 4 types of worms in dogs, with the likelihood of developing an infestation being higher if bitches are not worm free before whelping, if dog faeces are not cleared up on a regular basis, if your dog scavenges carcasses which are infected or, if it eats snails. The 4 types are Toxicara (or round worm) Tapeworm, Hookworms or Lungworms. There are a number of natural products which can help worm infestation however, garlic being one, neem chew sticks on a regular basis being another & crushed pumpkin seeds being another. I live in a rural location and in 2010 after about three years of only giving natural anti worming products had all my dogs faeces tested. Not only were there no worms, there were no egg cells either. A raw fed diet means the gut of the dog is less mucousy /attractive to worms. The only proviso regarding Neem products is it should not be used in breeding bitches.
Liquid garlic obtainable from ( www.dorwestherbs.com) is a natural antiseptic & is very useful for cleaning out dogs ears,& superficial cuts. Colloidal Silver ( www.GrandmaLovesTheDog.com ) is also useful for cleaning ears & for care of superficial wounds.  If you are going away on holiday with your dog, be sure, to adjust the ID tag to reflect your temporary address, & inform the microchip company too, plus ensure you have an adequate supply of any regular medication.
Hopefully you will find the information above of use, but if you have any queries, please do not hesitate to get in touch with doreen@haveahappyhound.co.uk , “where every dog is a special dog”!
Doreen Simpkins
01785 851 300 or, 07967636644

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