Last Updated on
Lots of people take Echinacea for immune system support.
But for a pet dog?
Whether this popular herbal supplement truly works, either for animals or people, is up for debate.
With that being said…
Some evidence does exist that Echinacea is useful for a weakened immune system. This, in turn, may indirectly assist with a UTI and even kennel cough.
Dogs Can Take Echinacea Too
This herb extract is said to increase white blood cell production which may help fight certain infections.
But hold on…
Any dog with a potential medical problem should be properly diagnosed and treated by a veterinary professional.
A Herb For Hounds Too
Truth be told, dogs don’t typically need Echinacea.
A strong immune system is usually ensured with a quality diet, but sometimes supplements make sense.
While it may raise some eyebrows, Echinacea is not out of the question for certain dogs. Again though, it’s best to talk to your vet about it.
Surprising Swiss Study
There is a scientific basis for providing Echinacea to an ailing pet dog.
6 Swiss veterinarians gave powered Echinacea to 41 dogs with chronic or seasonal upper respiratory infections (including kennel couch and bronchitis).
You can view the results of the study, but here is a direct quote that summarizes their work:
“Overall efficacy showed significant improvement for 92% of 39 dogs after 4 weeks of treatment.”
Echinacea Common Uses
Echinacea is taken for all sorts of things.
In addition to infections, it may alleviate skin problems including:
- Minor wounds
- Insect bites
That’s not all!
Many believe echinacea can help dogs with the common cold and flu (by assisting the immune system).
So considering this extract is not such a crazy idea!
Play it safe and get a holistic vet’s advice!
As a Natural Laxative?
Among its many uses, humans also take echinacea extract for constipation.
For your dog though, pumpkin is usually most effective to help move things along. Of course, it is also super safe.
But remember, canines have relatively fast metabolism.
The point is constipation usually doesn’t remain a problem for long.
Milk Thistle Comparision
Echinacea and milk-thistle (AKA Silybum marianum) share many of the same abilities.
But the latter can also cleanse the liver and provide trickle down benefits to the rest of the body.
While debatable, milk thistle may be better suited for a four-legged friend.
The Bottom Line
Echinacea also holds promise for dogs.
The herb is not known to be dangerous for pets. On the contrary, the previously-mentioned Swiss study showed overwhelmingly positive results.
Get your dog diagnosed if they’re sick with a respiratory infection or anything else that may be lingering.
And remember that a quality diet will always be the basis for good health.
Each dog’s medical condition is different. Echinacea may or may not be a good treatment option.