Do you have a pet dog? They are wonderful creatures, aren’t they? When it comes down to loyalty, dogs are the most loyal among animals. It is no wonder, then, that we instantly fall in love with them. Naturally, it pains us when our loyal friends suffer from pain due to an ailment. The question – is there something that we can do to help them?
Of course, there’s always the option to go to the vet and get your pet checked. However, wouldn’t it be great if we could help them ourselves? An age-old remedy used by humans can help here, and that’s apple cider vinegar.
Apple cider vinegar has many benefits not just for us humans but also for our dogs. If you are wondering can dogs have apple cider vinegar, the answer is yes, they can.
Before we go further, here’s a quick look at the inherent benefits of apple cider vinegar for dogs.
- ACV is rich in potassium, and hence benefits dogs with diuretic or heart problems.
- It’s a useful after-shampoo rinse, because it is detoxifying, and hence ensures that allergens and irritants are removed from the dog’s skin.
- ACV breaks down excess calcium deposits, and re-mineralizes dogs’ bones, helping them stay fit and active.
- Apple cider vinegar has many antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties that make it useful for dogs.
- ACV has plenty of uses for dogs; it is used to treat skin problems, joint pains, sore or itchy paws and many more ailments.
- Unlike many other similar products, ACV doesn’t disturb the friendly bacteria balance in the dog’s GI tract.
Here are 10 benefits and uses of apple cider vinegar for dogs.
1. The Fix for Itchy Paws
When dogs have itchy paws, it’s only natural that they would try to relieve themselves from the pain. However, in this process, they might end up making the itch worse. It’s is your duty to help them out. What can you do? Use apple cider vinegar.
For itchy paws, ACV’s antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties come into play. ACV is sure to relieve the dog from the irritation.
How to use it?
For this treatment, soak the affected area of the dog’s skin in a solution of ACV and water. Use 1 part of apple cider vinegar and 2 parts of water. You will need to put this solution in a large bowl. Once your solution is ready, dip your pet’s paw in it for 5 minutes. After this is complete, thoroughly dry your dog’s paw, don’t rinse it. Do this once or twice daily until your dog shows signs of being relieved.
2. Ear infections – beg one!
Dog-ears are very sensitive and infections in and around ears are very common for our furry friends. They happen mostly due to harmful bacteria or ear mites; the infection can be very irritating for dogs. Time to treat them.
Apple cider vinegar can bring some quick relief here.
How to use it?
Dilute the apple cider vinegar with water in 1:1ratio. Mix it and put the solution in a bulb syringe. The syringe will help you to regulate the number of drops you put. You will need to put about 10 drops into the dog’s ear. Then, use cotton to clean the ear. Do this once a day.
Point to note: If the inside of the ear is red, then it is best to consult a vet.
3. Bad Breath Is The Worst
Humans aren’t the only ones to suffer from bad breath, dogs have this problem too. So, if you take so much care to make sure you don’t have bad breath, you can surely help your dog too. Apple cider vinegar’s anti-bacterial properties come in handy to fix bad breath.
How to use it?
Mix the ACV in your dog’s water. About half a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar should suffice. Many dogs seem to like the taste, so you can be sure they will drink it.
4. Fleas will flee
Fleas are very irritating for dogs, no wonder they get so irritated when fleas attack them. This causes them pain and itching, making them really annoying. The acetic acid in the apple cider vinegar really helps take care of fleas. First, it provides almost instant relief from itching and pain. Second, it significantly reduces future risk of infections.
How to use it?
Make a solution of raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar and water. Put this solution in a spray bottle and spray it on the infected area. You will have to do this few times on a daily basis.
5. Dog Pyoderma
Dog pyoderma results because of open and untreated wounds. Apple cider vinegar can be used to treat dog pyoderma too. In fact, it is among the most recommended home remedies. A solution of ACV and water can be very effective. It works like an antibiotic and relief comes quick. Ask about the ideal method, time and quantity from your vet.
6. A Cure For Arthritis
Humans are very familiar with arthritis and it just so happens that dogs experience the same kind of pain. Accumulation of calcium deposits near the joints makes it hard for dogs to walk and also causes a lot of discomforts. Apple cider vinegar helps break the calcium deposits and also increases its pH levels.
How to use?
Make a solution of apple cider vinegar with equal amounts of water. Soak a cloth in the solution and place it directly on the joints for about 10 minutes. Doing this 2 to 3 times a day should be really helpful. You can add the apple cider vinegar do your dog’s drinking water also. This will help break down the calcium deposits. The amount of ACV depends on the weight of the dog. For small and medium size dogs weighing up to 14 to 34 pounds, you can add 1 tablespoon. You can add 2 tablespoons of ACV for large dogs that weigh anywhere between 35 to 85 pounds.
7. A Help To Combat Allergies
Dogs can get allergies or dermatitis dueto many causes, and the best way to fix these allergies is apple cider vinegar. The best way to get quick results is to mix the apple cider vinegar in the dog’s bath. Giving a dog bath with ACV is the most effective way of ensuring that each area of the skin is covered. It’s best not to overdo the addition of the apple cider vinegar; adding one or two cups should suffice. Your dog will feel instant relief.
8. Heal Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections often cause dogs to experience pain. If your dogs are having difficulty urinating or are urinating blood, there is high chance that they have urinary tract infection. Apple cider vinegar, with its healing properties, helps to clean the bladder and reduces the growth of bacteria responsible for the infection.
How to use?
The best way to administer apple cider vinegar is to mix it with the dog’s food or water. If the pain continues, it is best to visit the vet.
9. Yeast infection
Yeast infections can happen anywhere from ears, skin to even the paws of a dog. These infections happen due to consumption of poor quality meat, gluten in dog food and other reasons. Humans have used apple cider vinegar to treat yeast infections from ages. Thankfully, the same is effective for dogs as well. It can be used topically or internally, the preference is yours.
How to use?
Topically – Mix raw apple cider vinegar with an equal quantity of pure water and put the solution in a spray bottle. Ensure the ACV is diluted in half so it doesn’t harm the dog. Spare the infected area on your dog and it should find relief. You can also add the solution to your dog’s bath and sponge the infected area.
10. Keep The Tick Out
Ticks are annoying little creatures that can cause a lot of pain to dogs. Dogs can pick up ticks easily from infested yards or woods. Tick bites can lead to swelling in the joints, fever, and loss of appetite, so if your dog shows any such signs, it is best to consult a vet. Apple cider vinegar’s acidic properties also act as a deterrent that keeps the ticks away.
How to use?
You will have to mix apple cider vinegar with equal amounts of water and put the solution in a spray bottle. If you wish to, you can add 2 or 3 drops of lavender oil as well. Once you have mixed the solution, you can spray the infected area. The frequency of usage depends on the severity of the tick infestation; this can be either daily or few times a week.
A Question To Think About
After reading this article, you must be amazed at the uses of apple cider vinegar. However, the question must be asked – is there any risk in using ACV on dogs? The answer is yes. As beneficial as apple cider vinegar can be, it has its risks. As the ancient proverb says – wu ji bi-fan. It means – too much of anything is bad”. The high acidic content in apple cider vinegar can prove to be harmful to your dog. If used too much, it can cause irritation near the skin, eyes and also irritate the digestive tract. Hence it is best to dilute the solution with water. Also, consult your vet to know the exact dosage that will suit your dog. Apple cider vinegar is useful for both male and female dogs.
Points To Remember
- Dogs must not consume undiluted apple cider vinegar internally. This can be very harmful to them.
- ACV is best used to dilute the dog’s water, or can be added in small quantities in their food.
- Dogs with kidney problems should not be fed apple cider vinegar.
- Do not apply apple cider vinegar directly on serious cuts, burns or the like. The pain would be too excruciating to bear for your furry friend. Again the solution is to dilute the apple cider vinegar so that it is less harmful.
The benefits of apple cider vinegar far outweigh its risks. However, precaution is required while administering any kind of treatment. We love all our pets and dogs are no exception. They are amazing friends and many people even treat them as their kids. Which is why, when our child suffers, we suffer. It’s no wonder then that so much effort goes into taking care of them. Remember to keep in mind all the precautions before administering apple cider vinegar to your dog. If your dog’s condition doesn’t seem to improve, no matter what you do, it is best that you take him/her to a vet.
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