Looking back on the last several years, there are a few things I have done that I would have never thought would be a part of my itinerary.
Sitting on the kitchen floor holding a bag of frozen peas to Milo’s empty, swollen scrotal sack or pulling a string (or worms) from a dogs behind are among the list but chasing Milo around the house with a tube of Monistat in my hand with the intent to inject the cream into his ears while yelling “bring your vagina ears over here!” absolutely takes the cake for one of the most theatrical and amusing moments of my rescue career.
Now, anyone who knows me knows I am frugal…sometimes to a fault as my husband has frequently called me cheap, I say financially thrifty. On the other hand anyone who knows me also knows I will gladly drain my bank account for any of my fur kids…when necessary. Thankfully, through the years I have been lucky enough to acquire knowledge of several at home remedies for everyday doggy issues us fur parents may face.
Sometimes a tablespoon of pure pumpkin is all that stands between you and paying the emergency room fee plus care costs at the vet on a Sunday. So below you will find a list of at home remedies that are safe and will not stage a robbery against your bank account.
Let’s start with one of the most common issues us doggy parents face, the hersey (very stinky) squirts. I’m sure I’m not the only wife who’s come home to find the dogs’ bed and blanket in the middle of the driveway, the crate moved to the hardwood floor in the living room, and one poop covered pup waiting for me (all courtesy of the husband who has a horrible gag reflex). Or walked in the door after a long day’s work to be greet by a smell worse than rotten eggs whisked in expired milk.
Pure Pumpkin is loaded with natural fibers and will work wonders for dogs suffering from both constipation and diarrhea. The large quantity of fiber will absorb the extra moisture and will result is harder stools within just a few hours of consumption. It will also cure an upset tummy and work in just the opposite manner for dogs suffering from constipation. Not only is pumpkin filled with magical digestion cures but it is also a good source of vitamin E, Phosphorus, Magnesium and Potassium. Canned pumpkin is AMAZING and it’s the first thing I give my fur kids at the first sign of digestion issues.
For smaller dogs start with one tablespoon and for larger dogs start with two tablespoons. Canned pumpkin can be found at any grocery store and will likely cost you under a dollar! Much better than a $50+ trip to the vet!
Now back to those yeasty, Vagina ears.
Yeast Ear Infections
If you are the fur parent to a dog with floppy ears you have likely experienced the joy of treating a yeast ear infection. For a dog with chronic ear infections, those frequent trips to the vets office can really do some damage to your bank account and your vacation days. Here are two tricks for treating those pesky infections at home for pennies on the dollar.
Single men, you may want to get a lady friend or your mom to help you gather supplies for this one! You will need a tube of Monistat (here’s where your mom or lady friends help comes in) and some Hydrocortisone. Mix an equal amount of Monistat and Hydrocortisone cream into a small bowl and plop into the microwave for 15-20 seconds. Use a syringe to suck up and inject the mixture into your pups infected ear. Do this twice a day for 5 to 7 days.
You can use just the Monistat cream as the Hydrocortisone cream is strictly to helping with itching and discomfort.
If you aren't comfortable heading to the lady section of the grocery store and you can’t seem to find someone to help you there is another option; White Vinegar and water. NEVER put straight vinegar into your pups’ ear! The solution MUST be diluted half water, half white vinegar and never leave your pups ears wet. Squirts the diluted solution into your dog’s ears and clean out with a cotton ball. Do this twice a day until the infection has cleared.
Please be cautious to monitor your pups ears closely. If they do not appear to be getting better with either of the above treatments do not wait to get them to a vet, ASAP. Ear infections that are left untreated can reach deep into the ear canal and eventually the brain stem and cause inflammation leading to seizures.
Below are a few more inexpensive solutions for doggy care;
Coconut oil- helps to reduce dry, itchy skin and contributes to healthy coat
Fish Oil- helps to reduce dry, itchy skin and contributes to healthy, shiny coat
Plain Yogurt- good to give to your pup if they are on antibiotics as antibiotics are known to cause yeast infections. The Acidophilus in yogurt will help to keep good bacteria in check while still allowing antibiotics to kill off any bad bacteria in the intestines.
Chamomile tea- is great for soothing minor skin irritations and tummy aches while the, still warm, tea bags are great for irritated eyes.
Epsom Salts- if your dog is constantly itching/biting their feet chances are they are sore, red and inflamed. Epsom salts will help to sooth and will kill off any bad bacteria and or yeast in between the pads of their feet. If you can’t get your pup to stand in a bath for 5-10 minutes you can soak a cloth in the mixture and wrap their feet while they take a siesta.
An old Copper Penny (prior to 1983)- If you use a water dispenser you can insert an old copper penny into the top of the dispenser, the little bit of copper your pup will consume should be enough to warn off fleas! The penny HAS TO BE FROM BEFORE 1983!!! If you use a penny produced later it is not composed of strictly copper and can pose a risk to your pup especially if ingested. (My parents have used this method of flea prevention for many years with great success).
Flour and water- if you accidentally clip your dog’s quick you can easily stop bleeding with a quick mixture of flour and water. Add a bit of water to a bowl of flour to make a paste. Put the paste on the affected nail and blood be gone! Baking soda or corn starch will also work!
I hope some of these tips and tricks will save you a few unwanted trips to the vet!
With over 10 years of experience through ownership and rescue work, I hope to share my knowledge and insight to happier, healthier fur kids. Have a question, feel free to ask!