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About a month and a half ago, my Black Lab Whopper was really wobbly and unstable on his back legs, and showed signs of pretty bad arthritis, to the extent that I thought I'd be putting him down soon. I started him on glucosamine with msm and potassium, and he has improved dramatically. I also plan on putting him on alfalfa pills, and he is a house dog for the winter. (posted December 2010)
     It is now July 2nd, and Whopper has improved dramatically. He'll never jog again without hip replacements, but he is now walking a minimum of 8-10 blocks no problem. He still likes to fetch and wander around, and stands just as long as the other dogs. But he is obviously limited. 

     Whopper made it to August of 2015, and was able to walk and get around until 3 weeks before he died, age 15 almost  16.

              CANINE HEALTH TIPS

     THIS IS A PAGE DEVOTED TO DOG HEALTH. MANY TIPS ON THIS PAGE ARE MONEY SAVING SHORTCUTS, AS WELL AS TIMELY TIPS/ADVICE WHICH HELP PREVENT PROBLEMS TO BEGIN WITH. ANYONE WHOM WANTS TO SUBMIT TIPS AND/OR ADVICE IS MORE THAN WELCOME TO. ALWAYS CONSULT WITH YOUR VET BEFORE ADMINISTERING ANY SORT OF TREATMENT THAT YOU MAY BE UNSURE OF. BE AWARE ALSO, THAT THE WORLD OF VETERINARIAN PRACTICE IS MUCH LIKE THE WORLD OF DOCTORS AND PHARMACEUTICALS: SOME ARE INVESTED IN THE PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY AND WILL NEVER ADVISE USING HERBAL OR OTHER NATURAL REMEDIES, SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY MAKE MONEY ON PHARMACEUTICAL MEDICINE, A LOT OF WHICH CAUSE AS MANY PROBLEMS AS THEY SOLVE. PERSONALLY, I AM A FIRM BELIEVER IN HERBS. THEY WON'T CURE EVERYTHING, BUT THEY WILL PREVENT MANY, MANY AILMENTS. BECAUSE OF HERBS, THE NATIVE AMERICANS AND THE PIONEERS SURVIVED.


                                                                                           THE TIPS

     1. DOG OWNER'S VETERINARY GUIDE by G.W. Stamm-Copyright 1952 (Stamm)-Distributed by Sterling Publishing Co, Inc, 122 E. 25th St, New York 10.
This book, in my opinion, deserves special recognition, containing all sorts of basic & specialized tips on preventing and treating a host of ailments, and has a very well covered section on antidotes for various poisons. The people whom did things before/without modern technology, are just plain good.

    2. For hip/joint pain and/or arthritus, give your dog a human glucosamine choindroiton pill with the food. For deteriorating hip joints, glucosamine with msm (to help rebuild cartilage) is even better, plus potassium, for muscle activity. Check with your vet to see if a daily dose of both is a good idea. Be sure that both pills are good quality. Potassium pills should be green, rather than white. Pills should be sodium free. Even if white in color, they are ok as long as they are potassium gluconate. Potassium chloride is not ok. Some manufacturers sell potassium chloride in pill form, which is the same as water softener salt (BAD FOR DOGS, ESPECIALLY WITH HIP/JOINT ISSUES). 

    3. To solidy the stool, helping prevent certain digestive irregularities, give your dog a tablespoon of peanut butter once per week with his food  I've heard both yea and nay on this. I just gave my Doberman some, and it did seem to help.

    4. If your dog has ingested antifreeze, and you catch it within 1/2 hour to maybe an hour or so, force feed him milk, which not only coats the stomach, but de-toxifies the poison which is in antifreeze (Courtesy of the Indiana State Police at Peru, IN).

    5. A tablespoon of vegatable oil or corn oil with food will help prevent dry skin and aid in digestion.

    6. A tablespoon of olive oil in food will aid in digestion and make the coat shiny (Courtesy of a man whose name I've forgotten). 

    7. Washing the dog's water and food bowls daily makes a noticeable change in the overall well being of the dog, as well as preventing sickness/disease. I wash my dogs' food bowls daily, and change the water in the water bowls daily. I wash the water bowls 1-2 times per week, especially when a lot of mosquitos are out.
     Occasionally I neglect to wash their bowls for one of two reasons: there is such a thing as being too clean constantly (exposure to certain germs is what keeps the immune system strong), and; it occurred to me awhile back, that as humans and dogs can catch a sickness from another from either direct or indirect contact, if one dog is on medication for something, such as Heartgard for worms, maybe letting the dogs whom are not on the medication eat from an immune dog's unwashed bowl  will help guard that dog against worms until he can also be put onto the medication.

    8. When jogging/walking your dog, doing that on hot asphalt can buff the pads off on the bottom of your dog's feet (courtesy of Becky, Roann, IN)

    9. After running/jogging your dog, he, and you, need a cooldown walk, especially on a hot day, and most especially before letting him swim or hosing him off. With us humans, probably most or all mammals, hard work makes carbon dioxide build up in our muscle tissue. If it isn't allowed to ventilate, it can cause sleepiness, sluggishness, tiredness and/or muscle cramps. A hot dog just jumping into water will often hack and cough, just like a human can get sick when cooling off that rapidly. It's too much of a shock to the system with a dog, considering that their bodies ventilate much differently than do ours. To monitor closely the dog's core temperature, use a thermometer after vigorous exercise.

    10. You may need to experiment with different dry dog foods, as one dog does well with one brand, one with another. Pay special attention to the fat and protein content. They get some of their energy from the fat, as well as the protein. Too much protein can cause a dog to "crash", just as a human can "crash" from too much protein. Also, unless you're working or running your dogs a lot, too much protein can cause them to "bounce off the walls", making it harder to handle them, especially when training them new things. You can take a dog which minds well, but if given too much protein and he gets loose, won't be fun, or even possible, to catch until he burns off some of the energy.

    11. Never tie your dog off on the right rear of your vehicle or the right front, unless you are in England, in an English car. Could be very hazardous to your dog's health if you forget he's there & drive off. I forgot once and drove about ten feet. It's best to never tie off to a vehicle for that reason. Tying off to a door handle could send you to the parts store, maybe a body shop, but if it's the driver's door, at least you won't accidently kill your dog.

    12. Be watchful when walking your dog near fertilizer plants or farmers' fields during the planting season. if a dog gets some fertilizers on their feet, it can greatly irritate them.

    13. When buying flea drops, pills, powder or bombs, be sure to buy the one which kills both fleas and flea eggs. Otherwise, if you don't kill the eggs, you will likely have fleas again in a short time, maybe within a few days to a week.


    14. Sprinkling garlic powder on carpets and leaving it for a day or two is reported to rid the house of fleas.

    15. Sevin dust, sprinkled on the carpets, on pet bedding, and on the dog, will take care of fleas. Be careful not to get the dust in the dogs eyes or other sensitive areas. I use this product and it does a good job. Also be sure to read the product label and instructions.

    16. I see a lot of overweight dogs. VERY UNHEALTHY, especially for a dog, because they can't talk and tell you what hurts, and a dog will keep going until he drops. For an overweight or arthritic dog, Purina Fit & Trim does wonders. They'll drop many pounds within 1-3 weeks, plus it has things which is good for the hips and joints. It can help them to regain a puppy like exuberance. Once down to an acceptable weight, it can be fed half & half with the regular food, or whatever ratio is needed. There are other brands as well. I feed Diamond & Purina.

    17. To help a constipated dog, whether it's due to natural reasons or if he has eaten some undigestible objects, give him some cat laxative and put a 1/4 cup of mineral oil in his food for a couple of days, after checking with your vet for the correct amount of laxative and to be sure the vet doesn't want to check the dog out first. Also, check the dog's temperature 2-3 times per day. A perfectly healthy dog can have a warm nose at times, and a cool nose doesn't mean the dog isn't sick.

    18.  If a dog goes off food or upchucks, it could be due to a feeding schedule change, a sudden food change or seperation anxiety. The separation anxiety is especially possible with a newly acquired dog. (Courtesy of Wabash County Animal Shelter).


    19. To help keep a dog''s coat soft and shiny, crunch up an egg shell and mix in with the food. (Courtesy of Jason Holley, Roann, IN) It would seem that those could stick in the throat or cut, but I have been doing this and have had no problems, plus there is protein in an eggshell. Many "pros" advise against giving a dog chicken bones, but as I remember, we used to let our family dog eat them. I read an article by Ed Frawley of Leerburg Kennels that he says giving a dog chicken bones should be okay. He's been training/raising/breeding dogs for 40 years or more. I can see some need for concern, especially with a dog which gulps his food. I would probably not give a dog like that small chicken bones, at least not without watching him, but egg shells crunched up I have had no problems with. Remember, dogs have survived for ages in the wild without human help. As an illustration of small, sharp objects, my vet said that he's seen dogs swallow needles, and they usually pass right thru, though not always.

    20. To help cool a hot dog down, put rubbing alcohol on the pads of the paws. (Courtesy of Wabash Co. Animal Shelter)

    21. FOR TICKS-Soak with linseed oil or petroleum jelly, then use tweezers-use a firm twist & pull-if the mouth remains, apply an antibiotic or mild disinfectant.

    22. FOR FLEAS-dose daily with 1-5 grams of vitamin B complex.

    23. Fleas contribute to tapeworm.


    24. Heartgard brand pills are good, but Iverheart brand also has ingredients to kill tapeworm, as well as heartworm, hookworm, roundworm and whipworm.

    25. Clean ears with warm olive oil on a cotton swab or ball, once every 2-3 months.

    26. Squeeze anal glands occasionally (1 on each side of anus).

    27. FOR DRY SKIN-1 tablespoon of polyunsaturated vegatable oil, plus brewer's yeast (for B vitamins) and wheat germ.

    28. To stop bleeding, pack cayenne pepper into the wound. This works very well for when you cut into the quick when trimming nails. Works on humans, too.

    29. A few drops of Dawn liquid dish soap when giving the dog a bath is said to stop fleas.
    30. Feeding a garlic pill or powder with the food is reported to take care of fleas.

     31. A tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in the dog's water will help keep fleas away from your dog. Regular vinegar will also work, but the apple cider vinegar tastes better. (Sonia Poe)


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     For a very informative site on dog, cat & horse care and feeding, as well as poison remedies, go to www.aspca.org/apcc                                        For a 24 hour emergency poison hotline, call 888-426-4435.