Scratching the Itch

It’s almost summer, and it seems the occupants of this house have been focused heavily on fleas and how to eradicate without topical or ingestible poison.

After spreading diatomaceous earth all over the deck, patio, under shrubs, along the fence, and basically throughout the yard, I realized that is the ingredient of my flea powder that made the Pugs scratch like crazy.

AWESOME! 

#fail

Thank God for the recent deluge that washed it all away.

I finally decided to just hire a mosquito service to come spray the yard every 3 weeks from now until October. Expensive, yes, but still cheaper than some of my vet bills.

The treatment is effective against mosquitos and fleas. Here’s hoping that approach, when paired with weekly baths, daily flea-combing, and boosted immune health will adequately address our issue on that front. I’ll keep you posted.

Even with all that, they have still been scratching incessantly, especially at 4am (which puts me in an especially bad mood).

What’s the prob?

I mean, I feed them raw, local honey daily, which should homeopathically address pollen allergies (I mean, it certainly has worked for me. First time in years that I’ve gone all spring without a sinus infection. Just sayin).

I feed them raw, fermented goats milk daily, which is a natural antihistamine.

They have a raw and grain-free diet, of course.

The diatomaceous earth is gone now.

What the deal-io?

I may never know for sure, but I’m not going to run to the vet for steroids or antibiotics that will only mask the symptoms and ultimately cause more harm than good over time.

As I was pulling on my hair and furrowing my brow over what to do, Dogs Naturally Magazine posted this article that gave me some options.

How fortuitous! Answered prayer, perhaps?

I read through it and realized I had most of the natural itch arresters right there in my pantry!

Being a throwback hippie is starting to pay off!

The most immediately effective thing I tried was coconut oil. I scooped some out, warmed it in my hands, and rubbed it into their skin where they seemed to be most bothered. They stopped scratching instantly, curled up and went to sleep.

DANG!

The next day, I pulled Basil and Oregano from my herb garden-window box and made a strong medicinal tea with it. I plucked about 2 tablespoons of each, boiled water, removed from heat, added the herbs and let it steep overnight. I then poured it over their meals.

Seems to be working. Not as instantly noticeable, but they’re not scratching quite as much, especially using the two together.

Then I dug around in my dried herbs and saw I had Calendula petals (Marigold) right there in a little bag in the fridge! I made a very strong medicinal tea with it, using the same method.

Boiled water first, removed it from heat, added the herb, and this time, I let it steep for 2 full days. It was very concentrated, so I got a big bowl with a lid, added almost a gallon of water to the concentrate, and stuck it in the fridge to use as a rinse after baths.

I bathed them and poured generous amounts over their coats as a final rinse, and let it air dry.

No. Scratching.

AND they smelled simply delightful! 🙂

Tip: Let the stuff come to room temp or close to it, unless it’s super hot outside, because it will be super cold fresh out of the fridge, and your dog may not love you that much after you freeze her tooter off.

I also have an arsenal of lemons and garlic at my disposal, and once the Calendula tea is finished, I can make a different rinse using them.

Options a-plenty! I encourage you to experiment with these if your dog is scratching the never-ending itch. Making the rinses will take a little bit of time and planning, but really, much much less expensive and a much healthier option than a trip to the vet. And if these methods absolutely fail, then you might have something else going on that does need medical attention.

pugs & kisses!

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