This Frugal Friday tip is all about our pets. I’ve had a few dogs in my time and just got a new little puppy a few weeks ago. Having a pet can be very expensive, but using little tricks can save you a ton!
Disclaimer: I’m not a vet nor do I claim to be. I simply use my knowledge, a little thinking, and things I already have on hand to keep my pets healthy. These are my opinions and things I’ve tried that have worked for me.
Hygiene: I could spend a fortune buying those expensive shampoos and doggie sprays at Petco or Pet Smart but there are more frugal ways to keep them clean. It has been proven that Dawn Dish Soap is very effective in cleaning animals. It is mild yet effective in cleaning oils from an animals skin. I use about a teaspoon with warm water to bathe my dogs.
Worms: I got my puppy a few weeks ago and unfortunately he had worms. It is very common for a puppy to have worms and most often the condition is passed on from the mother. Natural remedies that I swear by is the use of natural foods and Diatomaceous Earth (food grade). DE as it is often referred to is the skeletons of diotoms. Under a microscope the granules look like broken glass. Its as fine as baby powder and there is a lot of uses for it in the homesteading community. A lot of homesteaders give it to their livestock. People themselves use DE in their smoothies, teas, and food to stay healthy and free of toxins. As DE goes through the pets intestines, it pretty much cuts through all the worms breaking them up into pieces and therefore excreted when the dog has a bowel movement. It rids the intestines of toxins. Be sure to buy food grade!!! If you don’t it is a chemical used in swimming pools. They do sell DE at most all plant nurseries. While I wouldn’t use this to replace deworming, I would use it periodically to ensure they don’t come back or use it combined with deworming.
Another method is carrots. Chunky raw carrot when eaten scrapes the lining of the intestines and also forces the worms out.
Grain Free Food: is a must have in my house and I will buy no other. By using a grain free dog food you are giving your pet a high protein diet with healthy carbs such as sweet potatoes and brown rice. It also eliminates a lot of additives. Commercial dog food is made with byproducts and “chicken meal” instead of just chicken. YUK! It’s like us eating a burger from McDonalds versus making a fresh clean burger at home. If you wouldn’t eat this way on a daily basis, why would you want your pet to eat this way? Just like humans, bad food overtime causes a ton of health issues. The same goes for dog food. It has eliminated vet bills for me as well. I’ve had dogs who have had constant ear infections from their floppy ears. By going grain free, it eliminates the yeast found in other food and doesn’t contribute to the infections. Think yeast infection. Yes, you will pay a little more for dog food, but think of the vet bills you will save! Just like the saying, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Same concept.
Good Fats and Oils: I use coconut oil once a week in my dogs food. Not only is this a good fat, but it helps make their coat shiny and their skin from itching. Less itching means less shedding.
Ear Infections: I use mineral oil in my dogs ears and a few drops will do ya. It soothes the irritation while keeping the ear moist enough so they stop itching. A lot of the infection spreads and gets worse by their constant itching. Mites cannot thrive in an oiled environment because they suffocate. The oil traps them and when the dogs shake their head naturally, the oil loosens the mites and they shake it out. I also use white distilled vinegar to wipe in the ear and outside of the ear. It’s a natural deodorizer, anti-inflammatory, and disinfectant. I do this daily until the issue is resolved then every few weeks give their ears a nice cleaning.
In my opinion, our pets should eat as we do. I know in my home, our pets are our family and they depend on us to give them the very best. By giving them a healthy, natural diet and using common sense they will be healthy and be free or almost free of any issues. After all, they are like little people with paws 🙂