3 WAYS TO USE APPLE CIDER VINEGAR
When you have a dog suffering from itchy skin or ears, you’ll do just about anything to help. I know I have. And the more things we try, the more we buy… and things start getting expensive.
So it’s nice when finding an itch-reliever is as easy as walking to your kitchen cupboard and grabbing some vinegar. Organic, raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar, to be exact.
While apple cider vinegar has been touted to help with everything from boosting the immune system and detoxifying kidneys to helping lower cholesterol, here are three popular ways it can help your dog.
1. ITCHY SKIN
ACV can help relieve itchy skin and rashes caused by yeast and poison ivy. The best way to apply is by making a 50/50 solution of apple cider vinegar and water in a spray bottle and applying directly onto itchy spots, but NOT open wounds – the vinegar will sting if the wound is raw. If you can’t apply topically and yeast is the main concern, you can feed ACV in your pet’s food or water.
In The Veterinarians’ Guide to Natural Remedies for Dogs by Martin Zucker, yeast does not do well in the acid environment ACV creates, so she suggests feeding 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon twice daily.2. EAR CLEANER
Itchy skin is often accompanied by itchy ears – and nobody wants that. Holistic veterinarian Dr. Karen Becker recommends a proactive cleaning regimen using half ACV and half purified water to prevent ear infection.
- Check your dog’s ears daily for wax and gunk.
- Clean dirty ears using individual cotton balls soaked in the solution.
- Swab out the ears until no gunk appears on the cotton ball.
3. FLEA & TICK REPELLENT
Even the healthiest, cleanest dog may at some point face the pesky problem of playing host to one or both of these critters. Fortunately, ACV can once again come to the rescue.
- Before your dog goes out, spray him with that 50/50 solution of ACV and water.
- And for some added oomph, give 2 tablespoons of ACV in your dog’s food or water during flea and tick season. The same acidity in ACV that repels yeast, also repels ticks and fleas.
NOTE: When using apple cider vinegar internally or topically, remember to monitor your dog for any adverse reactions. Some dogs may need a lesser dose and some dogs may be too acidic already, in which case, apple cider vinegar might not be the answer.