The cause of inflammation is step one of healing. Bodies that cannot get past this step progress to chronic conditions like arthritis, colitis and IBD. I’ll explain the process and how to heal.
Here is our hint.
We must stop looking at our dogs in pieces and parts like an allopathic physician.
Instead let's look at them like a machine. How about a car engine? All parts are interdependent and all must be in good working order for that engine to purr. We're all like that.
And if we start with a purring engine, what happens when we put the wrong fuel in it? Uh-oh.
That is where our story begins.
Dog Swelling and The Healing Process
Dog Swelling (inflammation) is a response to either tissue damage, toxins or infections.
It's easier to picture it with a cut or scrape.
First the body releases histamine and a few other natural chemicals so the area may become inflamed and open blood vessels so white blood cells can get into the damaged area.
The white blood cells use free radicals to destroy microbes and cellular debris. (The clean up crew.) The surrounding healthy cells need antioxidants to protect themselves from those free radicals.
If all goes well once the white blood cells have done their job, the healing has begun and cortisol (the body's natural anti inflammatory) is released and shuts down the inflammation process.
That's what happens in a healthy dog or human. However, if the dog diet lacks enough truly nutritious food; if there are other toxins (over vaccination as an example), things don't work right.
If the body just doesn't have enough antioxidants to do the job so the good cells become damaged and the inflammation will increase.
Think of that dog swelling starting like a tiny lit match in a dry forest without water (nutrition) spreading and destroying tissue like a forest fire.
Dog Swelling That Doesn't Go Away
When the underlying cause of inflammation is not healed, we get many chronic conditions or diseases that are a result of inflammation. Look at these names as an example. Those than end in 'itis'. Just to throw some out there we've got appendicitis bronchitis, tendonitis, bursitis, colitis, dermatitis, gingivitis, conjunctivitis, diverticulitis, sinusitis.
That's a lot swelling going on!
What's Wrong With
Anti Inflammatory Drugs?
So let's say we take the dog to the vet because he seems stiff when he gets up, and moves slowly. It turns out arthritis is the prognosis and the vet gives him a prescription for Prednisone.
In just a few hours he's bounding around like a pup and you think all your problems are solved.
If we give a dog an anti-inflammatory, it will certainly reduce the swelling, but it will also stop the body from healing. This means the root cause will continue unseen while the body tries to deal with the man made anti inflammatory which must be filtered by the kidneys and is far stronger than natural cortisol.
And for heaven's sake, if you've never read the side effects of this stuff, you should. Check out my page on Prednisone above or this one on Rimadyl and maybe your mouth will drop open like mine did.
Overall, the more we help a dog with chemicals, the weaker his body becomes.
What do we do? It seems a better choice to provide dog food nutrition and, help the body detox and find specific herbal support so the body can heal itself the way nature intended. And maybe most of all we need to stop over vaccinating, which itself is a cause of inflammation.