Why isn't there more hoopla about food grade diatomaceous earth? I mean
it's non toxic canine flea control and keeps internal parasites at bay
right? Yes, but what's in it for you?
For us earth mother types (that's what my kids call me) diatomaceous earth is a wonderful thing. It's a natural substance we can share with our dogs that has no side effects.
While there's a growing number of people serving it to their dogs to replace toxic dewormers and swear by it, how many take it themselves?
And why don't we see it advertised or pushed by veterinarians? Could it be the lack of profit and inability to patent such a product? After all something made by the earth and not by human engineering cannot be patented.
It is not really earth or soil at all. DE is made up solely of
diatoms; microscopic, single celled creatures of various shapes whose life span is less than a week.
When they die, these mineral crustaceans build up deposits when the area they live in stays undisturbed for thousands of years. A more accurate name for them could be something like fossil shell flour. since that's what it is when harvested from the earth.
The 'food grade' lets you know nothing else was added.
There's also a few advantages it may have for you and your pets that you don't know about. Here's why it's a great addition to your arsenal of natural remedies.
1. It's Natural - So many labels boast the word natural nowadays that it has practically lost its meaning. But this is the real deal and should not be overlooked.
2. It's Inexpensive - What would it cost to take a mineral supplement containing 20 different trace minerals? Plus, once you buy a pill there's no telling if the minerals are natural or man made.
You don't pay per pill or per ounce. You buy the stuff by the pound which turns out to be about $4.40 not counting shipping. Being the queen of thrift, even I think that's a good deal.
3. It Heals - Because of the mineral content, here are some of the benefits of diatomaceous earth for us humans.
4. Kills Fleas On Dogs - Natural and non-toxic, DE is hard and sharp to insects and parasites. You can rub it into your dog's coat. When an insect comes in contact with it, it pierces the body's protective coating and the insect dehydrates and dies without pesticides.
A small amount sprinkled near butt and around neck should be rubbed in well. Your dog will love the rub down!
Death to fleas takes about 24 hours but unlike pesticides, fleas cannot build up an immunity to it!
(For other natural ways to keep your dogs free of fleas, please visit A Natural Remedy for Fleas.)
5. Kills Internal Parasites - I hate to say this but dogs are not the only ones who get internal parasites and why not have a natural method to rid the intestines of those nasty little things without poison? Let's keep everyone worm free!
Since DE doesn't soften in the liquid you stir it in, it kills intestinal critters like tapeworms the same way it kills fleas on the outside.
(For other natural ways to kill intestinal worms in dogs, please read Natural Dog Dewormer.)
6. Kills Fleas in Your Home - Non-poisonous flea control. For carpets, bedding etc. you can buy a broadcaster or use an empty baby powder container. Sprinkle lightly and rub or brush in with a broom. For more complete instructions, scroll down to "Tools Needed for Application" of boric acid, since it will be the same. Find this at Fleas In House.
Reminder: only use food grade diatomaceous earth.
Note: While it also kills fleas outdoors, since it's not insect specific it kills the good guys too and that makes me sad. Instead for natural outdoor flea control I recommend nematodes.
Eloquent wording with the 'stuff' wasn't it? You must be aware that anything other than food grade has been processed and dangerous to our dog's health (and ours of course). The stuff used in swimming pool filters has been heated to an extremely high temperature and a chemical or chemicals have been added to it.
I thought everyone would know the difference but boy was I wrong. I had a woman write me asking how much of her swimming pool DE she should give her dog. I freaked out.
Dogs - 1/2 teaspoon for a small dog and one teaspoon for a large dog mixed in water or sprinkled on wet food.
Humans - One teaspoon to one tablespoon daily mixed in your favorite juice or water.
Unless you live near a local retailer, your best bet for purchasing food grade diatomaceous earth is probably online through Amazon. I also like earthworkshealth.com but check shipping prices before you buy because they vary a lot and sometimes buying more costs less. Here's an example when I last check prices online.
One gallon container = 2.5 lbs
Four gallon containers, or 10 lbs
Of course it has many uses and I believe it keeps well, so the ten pounds would be a much better deal, so get some friends to split it with you.
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Please keep in mind that any one product is not a cure all for everything. Healthy homemade dog food, especially raw dog food with supplements will help your dog maintain a healthy, happy immune system.
For a better understanding of natural dog health read more of this site and join one of the groups I'm putting together.