As a person who loves, trusts, and knows the benefits of holistic remedies, my kitchen is my pharmacy. No really, it is. I have long encouraged the use of turmeric for pets’ (and peoples’) inflammation, and have found that apple cider vinegar is fantastic for a variety of issues from infections and fleas to dandruff.
Despite what you may have heard, organic apple cider vinegar can be a healthy, safe alternative to some of the more invasive flea medications and antibiotics.
What does ACV treat?
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) has been touted as a miracle cure. Some people believe that ACV can cure cancer or burn belly fat, while the FDA holds their stance that ACV does not have any nutritional value. But the truth lies somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. ACV has antibacterial and antifungal properties, which makes it a great solution for a variety of issues.
Raw, organic ACV can help:
- Eliminate and prevent flea infestations
- Treat UTIs
- Clear up certain skin infections
- Treat yeast infections
- Clean ears and prevent ear infections or itchy ears
- Eliminate tear stains
- Boost the immune system
This is not an exhaustive list. New uses for ACV are being discovered every day. When used in conjunction with other holistic treatments, ACV can pack a punch. ACV creates an acidic environment where yeast cannot grow, and it can kill bacteria.
How do I use ACV for my dog?
ACV can be ingested orally or used topically, or both depending on your pet’s specific need.
To treat itchy skin, fleas, yeast and urinary tract infections, put 1-2 tablespoons of ACV into your dog or cat’s drinking water. The taste is not fantastic, so you might notice your pet avoiding their water at first, but keep at it. They will get used to the taste. You can adjust and put just a few drops in to start.
For topical applications, it is always recommended that you do a 50/50 mix of ACV and purified water. This mixture can be put directly into the ears to clean and treat ear infections and rubbed onto irritated areas of the skin.
If your pet has an open wound, DO NOT spray ACV into it. It will burn and cause unnecessary pain. It is safer to put ACV in water for pets with potentially open, exposed wounds.
Fleas and ticks HATE the taste and smell of ACV, so putting it in their water makes your dog’s skin less tasty to fleas, and applying it topically can cause the fleas already on the skin to abandon ship. Do a 50/50 mix of ACV and purified water with a few drops of lavender or citronella oil, shake up, and spray directly onto the coat to eliminate fleas.
Is it safe?
ACV is a combination of apples and water. Both of which are perfectly safe for dogs and cats to ingest. Because ACV has antibacterial properties, if used too much it can cause some of the good flora in the gut to decrease, so you may want to incorporate a probiotic into your dog’s diet if you notice him having diarrhea or unusual stool.
Always monitor your pet’s reaction to any new treatment, as you may need to use more or less depending on their individual needs. If your dog is already suffering from too much acid, ACV may not help.
ACV works best in conjunction with other holistic methods, like CBD oil. You should always try to get to the root cause of the issue and discuss it with your vet, as environmental or food changes may need to be made.
About Angela Ardolino:
With over 25 years of experience caring for animals, Angela Ardolino is the founder and CEO of CBD Dog Health and House of Alchemy, LLC, a company dedicated to cultivating and processing the purest medical cannabis products, with the lowest environmental impact, for humans and pets. Ardolino is active in Women Grow and United for Care, and she holds a professional certification in Medical Cannabis for therapeutic use from the University of Vermont College of Medicine. Ardolino is the co-owner of Beautify the Beast, a grooming salon in the Tampa Bay Area. Ardolino is also the mother of three dogs, Nina, Odie, and Jolene, as well as 23 ducks, 19 chickens, 9 geese, 1 bunny and a pig at her rescue farm, Fire Flake Farm. For more information, visit www.angelaardolino.com/.