Thursday, January 6, 2011

Natural Flea Prevention for Dogs and Cats

When we moved from the mostly flea-free zone of Colorado to the warm sunny and flea-infested land of California, naturally I worried. I fretted that our two Chihuahuas, Tequila and Milagro, would get fleas … not to mention our aging cat Luna.

So I did what all panicked pet owners do – I immediately sent out an SOS to my friend and holistic veterinarian Madalyn Ward. She lives in Texas with cats, goats, chickens, and all kinds of other critters … all of which could have fleas but don't.

I peppered her with questions:

- Should I go with a chemical solution like Front Line?
- Would diatomaceous earth be effective?
- Are there any other natural solutions?
- Would daily flea-combing help?

Luckily, her answer was simple--so simple, in fact, that you probably won't read about it anywhere on the internet. But it's true. Her answer? Fleas don't bite animals with clean and healthy blood. It's as simple as that.

The Proof is in the Pudding
Actually, the proof is in Madalyn's kitties. Her cats are indoor/outdoor cats, and when they are outdoors they have a tendency to hang out with feral cats, who definitely do have fleas. So do Madalyn's cats get fleas from such close association with their feral buddies?

Sometimes … but not for long.

It seems like fleas don't really like cats with healthy blood. Fleas may jump on Madalyn's cats from time to time, but don't stick around. I have found the same thing to be true now that I have moved to California. The whole time we have lived here we have seen exactly one flea, on Milagro. But the flea didn't stick around on Milagro or bite him. Milagro didn't itch, scratch, or display skin irritation. Obviously, the boy has clean blood. This is interesting since neighbors around us are madly bathing, scrubbing, and otherwise dowsing their animals with anti-fleas chemicals.

So How Do You Keep the Blood Clean?
That's a good question and there is a simple answer: good digestion and excellent antioxidants. A dog who suffers from poor digestion will have "leaky gut syndrome," which literally means that food leaks from the digestive tract into the bloodstream. The result? Dirty blood.

To prevent dirty blood, boost your animal's digestion with enzymes and probiotics (like acidophilus and bifidus). To clean up blood, feed antioxidants like wheat sprouts, coenzyme Q10, and blue-green algae.

If that sounds like a lot of work, don't worry. There are two simple ways to achieve healthy digestion and clean blood:
- these convenient packets of algae, probiotics, enzyemes
- this powdered algae blended with probiotics

 Opening one packet on your dog's food daily works well or if using the powdered algae blend you get  the addition of wheat sprouts. Simply sprinkle this powder on your pet's food and rest easy. To be frank, I put quite a bit of this powder on the dog and cat food – but they have gotten used to eating green food. It may take a while, but even the most finicky dog or cat seems to accept the "greenness" of their food after a while.

And so far … not a single flea bite and certainly no flea infestation. I love it!

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1 comment:

  1. I use apple cider vinegar in my dogs' drinking water (about 2-3 Tbsp to a gallon of water) and, though we live out in the country, they don't have fleas. For fleas that are ON your dog, get a couple of lemons, roll them as you would for juicing them, slice in half length-wise, take your dog outside and rub the lemon half/halves all over your dog. This will remove the fleas that are on him/her, then bathe your dog with a flea shampoo.

    Treat your yard about 3 times, 7-10 days apart to kill the flea cycle.

    I don't use anything on my dogs other than a good flea shampoo that i purchase from my vet. I mix 2 gallons of the apple cider vinegar water each day so that i have enough fresh water to refill their bowls with during the day and all of my dogs are flea free.

    You can add a ***small*** amount of powdered garlic to their food, but do listen to what the other responder said about the side effects that too much garlic can have. It's true, too, that you can add de-natured brewer's yeast to their food, but some dogs can have a reaction to it.



    Fleas

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