Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Apple Cider Vinegar for Canines

I've been drinking apple cider vinegar (ACV) for a while now to help relieve symptoms of arthritis. Every day, I mix about 1 Tablespoon of ACV in a mug with a heaping spoon of raw honey and fill it to the brim with hot water. Aside from noticing that my joints ache less, I have been noticing my nails are growing like wild fire and my hair is soft and shiny. It got me wondering if I could give this remedy to my furry family members and if they would reap the same benefits. Sure enough, the answer is "yes" (of course it would be, otherwise I would not be writing about it in this blog). I've decided to compile a list of the benefits that have been toted on the internet about ACV along with a dosage suggestion and how to mix it for spray on application. Without further ado, here ya go: 

It should be noted that it is recommended you use raw, organic ACV that has the "mother" inside the bottle. I like to use this brand ---> Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar. But, this is mostly because it is what is available at my grocery store. The dosage recommendation for a dog is to work up to 1 tsp a 1 TBSP twice daily for a 50# dog. BUT, you should also make sure that your dog's natural body chemistry is in need of adding an acidic supplement by testing the pH balance of your dog's morning urine with a pH strip. ACV improves digestion by acidifying the gastrointestinal tract. This in turn, helps the digestion of proteins. Like humans, canine body chemistry can vary according to what is being eaten, stress, age, ect... A dog's pH balance should be anywhere between 6.2- 6.5. If it is in this range, your dog may not benefit from ACV and you may make your dog's chemistry to acidic by adding ACV to the diet thus making them sick. If your dog's pH is 7.5 or above, their body chemistry has too much alkaline. Apple Cider Vinegar may be beneficial in this situation. But, as always, you should work with your veterinarian when it comes to supplementing your furry friends.

Aside from adding ACV to the diet, it can also be used topically by mixing 1:1 ratio of vinegar and water. This mixture can either be sprayed or sponged directly onto the skin. The benefits of skin application are:
  • To remove excess soap after bathing
  • Kill bacteria that causes flaking
  • Repel fleas and ticks
  • To "cool" hot spots, burns and rashes 
Other added bonus' to ACV:
  • It acts as a natural preservative. This is super news for those of us who make our pet's food. Adding a little bit of ACV will extend the fridge life of our pets food. 
  • Some dog's are finicky about water and will only drink the water that they usually drink. This can become bothersome if you are traveling with a dog, because they won't drink unfamiliar water! If you get into the habit of adding ACV into their water daily, they may be more likely to drink that unfamiliar water when ACV is added (it makes it familiar!) 
Lastly, I will leave you with a couple of links for your own reading a research: 

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