Diatomaceous earth for dogs
Hi everyone, it’s been awhile since I posted anything here. There have been health problems in our family, many crisis events, of certain members of my family and of myself. I first started using diatomaceous earth for my dogs last year, but before that I had been using it successfully for my horses and chickens.
In my research to get my own health improved, I came across much helpful information in Facebook groups like the Magnesium Advocacy Group for their Protocols, and Diatomaceous earth groups. Since then, The information I gleaned from these groups has enabled me to help my horses, chickens, cats, dogs and myself (and husband).
First of all, what is Diatomaceous earth?
Diatomaceous earth is made from the fossilized remains of tiny, aquatic organisms called diatoms. Their skeletons are made of a natural substance called silica. Over a long period of time, diatoms accumulated in the sediment of rivers, streams, lakes, and oceans. Today, silica deposits are mined from these areas.
Silica is very common in nature and makes up 26% of the earth’s crust by weight. Various forms of silica include sand, emerald, quartz, feldspar, mica, clay, asbestos, and glass. Silicon, a component of silica, does not exist naturally in its pure form. It usually reacts with oxygen and water to form silicon dioxide. Silicon dioxide has two naturally occurring forms: crystalline and amorphous. Diatomaceous earth is made of amorphous silicon dioxide which is Food Grade DE and may contain trace amounts of crystalline or may not have any at all.
The other form of sillica is crystalline silicon dioxide and should not be consumed or breathed in. The crystalline form is used in making solar cell panels and electronics amoung others. Crystalline silica is found in stone, soil, and sand. It is also found in concrete, brick, mortar, and other construction materials. Crystalline silica comes in several forms, with quartz being the most common. Quartz dust is respirable crystalline silica, which means it can be taken in by breathing.
As you can read, there is a huge difference
between DE as amorphous silicon dioxide and the crystalline form which is used in construction materials and electronics! DE is also NOT dangerous to breathe in, in the amounts that you might if you were simply handling it. If you were a miner, mining DE, you’d want to wear a filter breathing apparatus, as you can have too much of a good thing too, right?
Some websites might try and convince you that taking DE internally is dangerous and bad, and others might say, taking internally is good but breathing in tiny amounts is bad. Stuff and nonsense! If it was so bad to breathe in for instance…. then my horse would be dead. I would be too as I handle a lot of DE when giving it to all my animals and ourselves in our home. Think on that. See my story below.
My animal DE story
About 4 years ago, I began using Diatomaceous earth (DE) for my small flock of chickens, mainly for parasite control, internally and externally. I put it in their feed and in their bedding. I no longer put it in their bedding of shavings as it just got too dusty in their coop. I occasionaly put DE on their perches when I notice scalliness in their feet from mites.
Then 3 years ago, one of my horses was experiencing severe COPD from the hay that I was forced to feed him. We had various hay suppliers over the years, whose hay became moldy from being baled too moist. Any hay with alfalfa seemed to be the worst. Alfalfa I have learned, has it’s own mold toxins regardless, that some horses are very sensitive to.
My horse could barely breathe, was coughing badly, white mucous was dripping out of his nose and it looked like the end for him. I had just lost a previous horse the year before for the same thing and my heart just couldn’t take anymore breaking. The meds that our Vet supplied had little to no effect.
I did more research into DE and learned that feed suppliers of pelleted feed, actually add DE to their formulas to prevent mold. As I had a large 50 lb bag of DE sitting around for my chickens, I decided to sprinkle DE onto and into all my horses hay with every feeding. I only threw away hay that had severe mold on it, but I knew most of the hay that I had in stock had milder mold by the musty smell that my nose detected.
To my delight and amazement
within 24 hours, of eating the dusted hay, my horse was breathing almost normally. To make a long story short, as the weeks and then months went by, all the damage caused to his lungs, disappeared. No more wheezing, no more coughing, and the mucous dripping gradually phased out.
I switched hay suppliers for the next season and the hay was much better quality mold wise. I still ran into a bit of mold from time to time, but as long as I dusted the hay thoroughly with DE, my horse could eat it with no problems. We switched from small squares to round bales too, but I even dusted the tops of the rounds with DE to prevent mold growth from weathering.
I rarely have to dust his hay these days, but instead I now add 1/4 cup of DE to a pelleted mash that I feed him once per day. I do the same for my other two horses. I have suspended their regular dewormings with horse deworming products to see how well DE does for them in this area too.
What does this have to do with diatomaceous earth for dogs you say? Nothing really LOL! However, I am sharing my journey of DE with you, so you can see how marvelous it is!
Living on a small ranch as we do, there is a higher potential for my dogs becoming infested with parasites. My dogs love to search out my barn cats ‘droppings’, eating them like prized truffles. Horse poop is readily available, chicken poop too. Ocassionaly my dogs find some rotting ‘treasure’ of a dead animal and want to eat that as well. Ugh!
I used to not worry about parasites in my dogs
barn cats and chickens unless I saw obvious signs of them. However, that was a mistake that I painfully realized when one of my favorite cats became ill. I did not know this cat was filled with parasites. Unfortunately, treatment and time at the Vet, was not enough to save his life.
From that point on, I rectified that with regular deworming with Fenbendazole, that is before I began using DE. While Fenbendazole is a safe dewormer, it is still a chemical dewormer which will put an organic body out of balance. My horses had been regularily dewormed twice a year with a variety of dewormers including fenbendazole. I knew about DE for many years and how many farmers were using it as a dewormer and preventative.
After my horses did so well on DE, chickens too, I started thinking about how I could use DE for ourselves, my cats and my dogs. My youngest dog has been plagued with parasite infestations since he was young. Signs of this were just general poor body condition, messy poops and lack of appetite. Every time I gave him the fenbendazole treatment (over 5 days), he would gradually improve. Same with a few of my barn cats.
Last year I began gradually adding small amounts of DE to my dog’s meals, starting with a 1/2 tsp and gradually working up the amount over many weeks to 1 tablespoon. My dogs are large Retrievers, weighing about 80 to 90 lbs each. I always mix some broth into their kibble anyway, so the DE easily mixed into the meal so the dogs would only taste the broth and kibble. DE has a very mild earthy flavour, which is not bad tasting at all.
My dogs would only be tasting and smelling the broth and the strong odour of their kibble. I use a very high end kibble, fish based, for my dogs, so you can imagine the odour of fish would overpower the light scent and taste of DE.
What were the results?
In the last 12 months, both dogs have not become unthrifty looking due to parasites, and no poopy problems to date. My younger dog, who would often go off his appetite, has not refused any meals since I started adding DE. My younger dog was also prone to lots of sneezing, especially the inverted type of sneezes where it sounds like your dog has something stuck in his nose! I have not heard one of those episodes from him in a long time.
My older dog, who had been developing rather large lumps on his body, in different areas, has not developed any new ones in a long while. Some of his larger lumps have shrunk to a smaller size.
Adding DE to my cats food was more challenging as they get mostly dry kibble free choice, so for them, I just added a small amount of DE to their bag of food and mixed it up with my hands. My cats were not thrilled at the ‘dust’ in their food for a long while but after months and months of having no choice, they are okay with it now. I am more confidant with the DE in their system that their poopy ‘truffles’ are less toxic for my dogs to eat, though I do not encourage it!
My own personal results I will include further down below
because I believe it could have the same effects on animals, for example dogs. All organic bodies need sillica, for healing and rebuilding of muscle, bone and so many other areas of a living body, animal or human. This post would get too long describing how many ways Diatomaceous earth can repair broken parts of you and your animals.
Doctors will tell you that joints cannot be repaired naturally, and cartilage cannot be rebuilt but they are wrong. Do some searches on various FB groups and read the testimonies of real people who will tell you otherwise.
My husband and I have chosen a healthier way of eating, limiting all carbs, severely limiting sugar, and choosing moderate amounts of protein and fats, and lots of vegetables in our daily mostly Keto diet. In order for DE to repair what is wrong, you have to stop putting inflammatory foods into your body too. What is the point of taking DE to stop the fires of inflammation, when you are still putting gas on the fire? Gluten is known to be inflammatory, so wheat, barley and rye are going to be inflammatory.
Glyphosates (as in Round Up), are known to be inflammatory, so eating any non organic grain, especially corn, is going to put gas on the fires of inflammation. Sugar is known to be highly inflammatory and in fact feeds cancer cells. Vegetable and seed oils like canola, corn, peanut, sunflower are high in inflammatory omega 6s, and add gas to the fire.
Omega 6s are not by themselves bad but they need to be balanced with Omega 3s. Starch by itself, quickly turns into sugar in your body, so even white rice and potatoes can be a problem when eaten in large quantities. Get the point?
Check your dogs food
how many inflammatory ingredients are in there? Grains? White rice? Potatoes? Canola oil? Starches like Rice and Potatoes should be eaten in a whole condition, with the fibre (bran and peel respectively) to slow down the insulin effect in the body. Insulin is sent into the blood from the pancreas to control the levels there. Yes, dogs can have diabetes too.
Diabetes is the result of too much insulin being sent from the pancreas to the points where the pancreas becomes exhausted causing insulin resistance (pre diabetes and type 2 diabetes) or stops working altogether causing type 1 diabetes.
Some people in the FB groups have testified that DE has healed, with a low carb diet, their diabetes, fibro, allergies, just to list a few. Dogfoods have a reputation of having some of the most horrible ingredients, and so it’s no wonder or surprise that dogs are suffering from some of the same diseases and unhealthy conditions that humans do. Clean up your dog’s diet and clean up your own too and then add DE.
Diatomaceous earth has a detoxing effect
on organic bodies, human and animal, and will expel parasites first. Parasites in the body are competing for nutrients in the body and therefore are going to be the first thing to go when the immune system gets working with DE. The worse shape you and your dog are in, the more detoxing will happen. Some of these detoxing effects can be unpleasant. I recommend that you join the DE Facebook groups as a means of support for when detoxing begins. Many people on these groups are dog owners.
My own dogs did not experience any detoxing symptoms that I could detect. Of course because they cannot speak english, I had no way of knowing if they had any uncomfortable sensations. As I mentioned above, I have only observed positives with them and I have had them on excellent dogfoods their whole lives too. No junk for them… except for poop 🙁
Now for my own experience
My husband and I began taking DE ourselves about a year ago or so, mainly as a parasite preventative at first. It’s easy to pick up parasites when you live and breathe animals, as we do. Humans are also prone to our own specific parasites, without animals. Yes, everyone has parasites. Reading the article on parasites on this website by Dr. Jay Davidson, it makes me wonder if many of the diseases that plague people, might be caused by parasites.
At first we took DE rather intermittently, as you know, it’s hard to start a new habit! We started off just mixing the very tiny amount of 1/8th tsp into a glass of water and guzzled it down. Very gradually we increased the amounts over months to 2 Tablespoons.
By this time, we were mixing it into a smoothie instead, usually at breakfast. We kept the amount at 2 Tablespoons for quite a while. The only obvious side effect we both had was a mild rash on our necks, which went away after about a week (parasites?).
My husband has suffered from Irritable bowel syndrome for years (caused by leaky gut) and did have more episodes of constipation and some stomach/side pains from time to time. However, it was impossible to tell if these were DE side effects of detox or not. What I did notice for myself is that my damaged knees were feeling better, my hair was growing thicker and fingernails were stronger.
Soon we were at 3 Tablespoons each,
and suddenly my knees got worse! I had noticed increasing soreness for about 2 weeks and then suddenly for three days, I could barely walk at all. However, I did not panic, because I had learned from people in the DE group that this can happen during healing. Sure enough, after three days, my knees felt better than ever.
A couple of people in the DE group testified that they had healed their knees completely by using 5-7 Tablespoons daily. One woman in particular told me that her Dr. had told her she needed knee replacements. That is what my own Drs have told me regarding my knees. She no longer has any knee pain, and uses no knee support as in braces at all after 2 years.
My husband who was borderline celiac,
at the very least gluten intolerant, and also severely corn intolerant in all it’s forms, has healed much from our keto diet and use of DE. He rarely has gut pain anymore, his knees are stronger too, and he can even cheat occasionally with a fast food hamburger. We have been at a 4 tablespoons dose for a couple of months. Our aim is not just to improve our health, but to heal those darn knees 🙂
If DE can do this for humans, it can certainly heal joint problems in dogs too. A couple of days ago, we moved up from 4 tablespoons to 5 tablespoons. Maybe it was too fast, because my husband began complaining about sore muscles around his ribs again (he had fallen on the ice about 5 days before) and my left knee was hurting all the time. No worries, no panic, we will push through. 5 Tablespoons is what it is going to be for awhile until our bodies are used to it.
Our dogs have been at 1 Tablespoon for a long time now, and as of yesterday, I increased their amounts to 1 1/2 tablespoons. Time will tell and I will update this story as things change.
Even though the aim of this post was to introduce you to the benefits of Diatomaceous earth for dogs, I hope you have been inspired to improve the health of your animal friends AND yourselves. For lots of general DE information, check out Diatomaceousearth.com a website devoted to the subject of Diatomaceous earth and all it’s benefits.