The Outdoor Experience - Plants & Flowers
Harm or Help?
Watching the many creations of Nature's Beauty is a beautiful thing. But despite all that beauty there are dangerous out there; even for a domesticated animal that is lovingly cared for.
There is a wide variety of plants & flowers that may not be that agreeable to our animals. Some may actually surprise you. I have always been told that garlic is a great tool against fleas, but surprisingly it is on the list provided by the ASPCA.
A complete list of toxic or non-toxic plants & flowers can be found here: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/poison-control/plants/
As they state in their introduction, this list is not all-inclusive:
"Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants
This list contains plants that have been reported as having systemic effects on animals and/or intense effects on the gastrointestinal tract. Please note that the information contained in our plant lists is not meant to be all-inclusive, but rather a compilation of the most frequently encountered plants. If you think that your animal is ill or may have ingested a poisonous substance, contact your local veterinarian or our 24-hour emergency poison hotline directly at 1-888-426-4435."
Some plants we may have used for years without knowing of the possible dangers involved. But with all 'Old Housewife's Wisdom', science has a way of teaching us new lessons every day.
The following are direct links to the lists of "Fauna' that may be harmful to our animals:
But what can we do if one of our animals accidentally ate one of these items and shows sign of poisoning?
While the 'Old Housewife's Tale' of milk may help in some cases (I have succesfully used it when one of my cats had an allergic reaction to a flea spot-treatent.), it is always best to contact the experts.
Below are some additional links with great information about emergency treatment:
American Veterinary Medical Association
Action against poisoning (Controversial views, but some good advise on First Aid.)
ASPCA Poison Control Center Information (There is a charge for usage!)
Pet Poison Helpline
First Aid (Lots of good info on any kind of situation!)
American Association of Poison Control Centers
National Capital Poison Center
Having grown up with a sister that has had quite a few health challenges to overcome, I learned to respect homeopathy and natural remedies. She is allergic against several 'school medicine' or 'man-made' products and my parents decided early on to 'go natural'. Is it the perfect solution? I leave that to everybody to decite on their own. In case of my sister, who didn't have a choice, it was the only solution. But sadly neither paths are perfect and the decision to go 'school-medicine' or homeopathic should ultimately rest with those that studied for years to keep us healthy. Only a qualified person should proscribe one or another. I firmly belief that there is a reason they are going through hell to become the Doctors that they are! And having had some friends in the medical field, their training, long hours, grueling work conditions, can only be described as hell; human doctors and vetenarians alike!
The art of medicine consists of amusing the patient while nature cures the disease -"Voltaire"
Having had quite a few large vet bills, I started to look online for a few options. Here is a list of websites I found.
A word of caution: I am not affiliated with them in any way and don't know any more about them than what is available on their website!!!
Herbal Home Remedies
Some websites offering natural products for sale:
While there are uncountable options of natural solutions available, it is VERY important to know what you are doing before you use any of them. Consulting with a vet can be life-saving! There are homeopathic veterinarians out there that are certified and qualified to provide consultation and treatment for your animal. They are trained professionals and can advice you on the positive or negative effects of the treatment you chose.
Yes, like with anything that involves money, you may encounter the so-called vet that chooses the for him most beneficial treatment. But it is up to you to go 'price-shopping' and research the reputation and qualification of who you entrust your animal's life to. It never hurts to get a second opinion; research the diagnosis and possible options online, or ask your friends and neighbors who their vet is. A good veterinarian will give you all the options, take the time to explain everything to you, and even refer you to somebody else if it is necessary!
I am no veterinarian or expert, but having animals all my life I learned that the most important knowledge is to know what you don't know and learn it.
If this was your child, you would do anything to ensure that both house and garden are 'child-proof'! Some flowers may look beautiful in your yard, but maybe some others would cause less harm and can look as beautiful!
And when using 'Nature' for 'Help', do your research!
With the help of professionals like veterinarians and the never-ending resources available on the Internet, one can follow one's path to educate one-self and find new ways to better the lives or our 'pets' every day.
Research and education is important! Having 'pets' brings with it a great responsibility. I would have never known that certain cough-syrups can help my pups get over their kennel cough (when antibiotics and proscribed pills didn't work), while others could have made them very sick, if I would have not surfed the Internet and compared multiple sources that led to the same conclusions.
When treating your animal for any ailment, make an educated decision! It will make the difference between success and suffering! Or worse!