Naturopathic Treatments for Pets Huntington WV
Practitioner's Corner—About Pets: Early Heart Disease
By Donna Kelleher, D.V.M.
Q: My golden retriever has just been diagnosed with early heart disease. We’d prefer not to start him on medication yet. Are there alternative approaches that might help?
A: Since your dog is in the early stages of this disease, naturopathic treatments are likely to be very effective. (If the disease had progressed further, I’d recommend going with your vet’s recommendations for conventional drugs.)
A homemade whole-foods diet (see next question) can be very helpful, as can various supplements that support the heart and circulatory system. Introduce these substances one at a time, eventually working up to giving your dog daily doses of all of them: a half clove of fresh garlic; 200 mg of magnesium; 500 mg of calcium citrate; 500 mg each of the amino acids carnitine and taurine; 1,000 mg of fish oil; 180 mg of coenzyme Q10; and 200 IU of vitamin E. (These doses are for a 50- to 70-pound dog; reduce them proportionally if yours is smaller.)
The herb hawthorn can lower blood pressure, if that’s desired, but it may take six to eight weeks to work, and should not be given with glycoside drugs like digitalis. Motherwort and ginkgo biloba have both long been used as blood tonics. If your vet approves, give your dog 50 mg of either per 10 pounds of body weight.
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