It’s November and for the past month we’ve had lots of folks asking for help for their itchy pets, so let’s talk about what some of the causes might be and what you can do about to help your dog or cat feel better.
Here in California we can almost consider Autumn our “Other Spring.” We get another round of plants blooming, which can trigger environmental allergy symptoms. Our pets will most likely show this as itchy skin because they have ten times the number of mast cells in their skin that we do – that’s why what gives us sinus problems gives them skin problems.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine Autumn is also associated with the skin. The Element for the season is Metal, and the Meridians associated with this time of year are the Lungs and Large Intestine. So dryness, skin and hair, immune system – all of these come together at this time of year.
No wonder we’re feeling, dry, itchy, and susceptible. If our overall health is out of balance you will see this indications come to the front. They are symptoms telling you to take good care of the inside of the body.
NOURISH, MOISTEN, WARM, STIMULATE
Be sure your pet is getting enough healthy fats in their diet with Fish Oil and Coconut Oil
Fish oil is a must. We also recommend coconut oil, especially for older animals that may be having a harder time fatty foods, or for younger dogs who are too thin or feeling dry. Coconut oil also has benefits for the immune and endocrine systems. Your pet’s fur should become more in just a few weeks.
Bone broth provides many benefits
We have both frozen and freeze-dried beef broth available, but we also encourage you to make your own. It provides collagen which nourishes dry cells, and it’s a tasty way to ensure your pet is getting enough moisture in their diet.
Medicinal mushrooms provide deep sustenance to the immune system
Medicinal mushroom powders (we carry locally produced Mushroom Matrix) are easy to add to the diet, making an especially good combination with warm bone broth. Reishi mushroom is nourishing to the lungs, adrenals, and kidneys, as well as increasing the immune cells in the blood which help prevent disease. Combination formulas provide a well-rounded balance of benefits for all animals.
Reduce troublesome allergy symptoms naturally
Even with the benefits of nourishing foods, some pets need more direct help at reducing the symptoms of allergies. Vet’s Best Seasonal Allergy Support contains the most well-regarded natural antihistamines (like stinging nettle leaf and quercetin), and can help reduce bothersome symptoms without burdening the body with the side-effects of pharmaceuticals.
Stimulate the skin without drying it
Gentle grooming is a wonderful way to stimulate blood flow to the skin. Our favorite tool for this is the Zoom Groom because the rubber “teeth” are pleasant for the pets and easy to use no matter how long or short the hair. It can also be used (softly) on the legs and feet, areas that usually don’t get much in the way of rubbing. You might be tempted to wash your pet when their itchy, but be mindful of using the most gentle options to rinse off allergens without stripping the natural oils of the skin. Look for “non-soap” options or those containing nourishing oils.