Treating dog with cranberry extract & Oregon grape

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Treating dog with cranberry extract & Oregon grape

Postby MariaAZ » Tue Apr 22, 2008 11:52 pm

Earlier this year our 15 year old "pup" was diagnosed with a massive bladder infection, e coli being the infective agent. She was on antibiotics for two weeks, and the infection started back up within a few days. Another urinalysis indicated that she wasn't suffering from any stones, so another round of antibiotics was ordered.

After a few good months, the poor dear started having bladder problems again. I read that cranberry extract can work well for e coli-based bladder infections, so I started her on that and a few drops of Oregon grape.

The old gal hasn't had an "accident" for a few days now, so I'm thinking this course of treatment is working. Any idea how long I should continue?
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MariaAZ
 
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Postby GrannySam » Wed Apr 23, 2008 7:23 am

Maria,

I'm fairly familiar with this, as I have an older Akita who is going thru the same thing, multiple reoccuring UTI's.

As they age, the bladder sphincter becomes weak. They may leak a bit while sleeping, or become incontinent altogether. When this happens, bacteria can enter the bladder much more easily. The urethral opening in a dog is located internally, in the vestibule, where urethra and vagina join. That area normally contains bacteria anyway. (not E coli)

I have had to resort to antibiotics a couple of times, but what actually improved her was Acupuncture and expressing her bladder regularly. The Acupuncture strengthened her bladder muscle and sphincter, forming a better barrier to bacteria. Expressing her bladder, a very easy thing to learn and do in a female dog, helps to keep her bladder empty. Stale urine grows bacteria faster.

Herbs I have tried at different times are; Usnea, Yarrow (when I saw blood), Cleavers, and Poke. None have been successful at clearing an infection completely, so I've had to use antibiotics, then work to repopulate her gut bacteria with probiotics.

Some other things I do ongoing; Vitamin C 2000 mg daily when not infected, up to 4000 when she is. I found a brand of C that is 1000 mg and is time released, which I feel helps. She weighs 70#. Cranberry capsules twice daily (1680 mg). Fish oil caps, two daily, helps with inflammation. No carbs in diet. Zero, nada. Carbs feed bacteria. (I feed a raw diet anyway)

You might consider asking your Vet to show you how to express her bladder. Most dogs don't mind it at all.

As for your current course of treatment, if it's working I'd continue it ongoing, unless you see problems associated with it. I'm not familiar with Oregon grape. Keep up with the C.

Hugs to your old girl. I love the seniors.

Blessings,
GrannySam
 
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Postby MariaAZ » Wed Apr 23, 2008 8:51 am

Thank you Granny Sam, for sharing your experiences. I wasn't sure if it's ok to give her the cranberry extract as a permanant thing. I am going to take your method and adapt it for my little lady.

I'm very surprised at how quickly the extract/tincture worked. The dog had experienced a sudden blood-tinged bladder expression while lying down that startled her so much (or was painful enough) that she leaped up. It was 1:30am and I jumped online to see what I could find that might give her relief. I found several references to cranberry extract, and one that included Oregon grape. My husband uses Oregon grape for his sinus infections and swears it works better on them when they're in the early stages than anything the doctors ever gave him. At any rate, I always have it on hand, so I added a few drops to the bread ball I had made with the cranberry extract. By the morning her bedding was still dry. Though the poor thing wasn't feeling quite her normal self, she seemed to feel better than the previous night. By the second day she was full of energy and bounce, so I think we caught it in time.
Mindless ramblings blog www.craftyfool.net
MariaAZ
 
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Postby GrannySam » Wed Apr 23, 2008 9:48 am

Maria,

Sounds like you are right on top of things.

I've never studied Oregon Grape, as it is not native to the Appalachians and I have my hands full here just learning about those that surround me. But this is a nice bit of info that I will add to my notes.

The only watch out for long term use of cranberry is possible over-acidifying her system. It would likely manefest in some appetite loss, as stomach irritation can occur. I've never had a dog do that, but have read that it can happen. Just watch her, and adjust dosing accordingly if you see any obvious problems.

Thanks for sharing and Blessings,
GrannySam
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2003 4:13 pm
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Postby GrannySam » Wed Apr 23, 2008 9:50 am

Can't edit again. *grumble*

I wanted to add I have seen that miraculously quick response with two different herbs for UTI's. One was yarrow, the other cleavers. Amazing. I love it when we pick the perfect herb for a condition and it works its magic.

Blessings,
GrannySam
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2003 4:13 pm
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