Milk thistle for dogs has a number of powerful antioxidant effects, which will help reduce liver disease symptoms, inflammatory bowel syndrome, and can help dogs who suffer from diabetes. Although not all vets swear by it, many are using milk thistle for treatment of patients who suffer from these conditions.
Use for dogs
Milk thistle’s active ingredient is silymarin, which has been shown to protect the liver against harsh toxins, and also helps with cell growth stimulation, to replace the damaged cells. The uses for dogs, is quite similar to the uses for humans. It is known to be a powerful antioxidant, and has anti-inflammatory capabilities. Although the main use of milk thistle for dogs is to treat certain liver conditions, it also has additional uses. Vets are prescribing it to owners whose dogs suffer from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and also for dogs who suffer from diabetes. During IBD inflammation of the liver and bile ducts occurs; the milk thistle has been found to help reduce such inflammation. And, for dogs affected by diabetes, it has been shown to help stabilize red blood cell levels.
Potential Future uses
Although at the present time the milk thistle is only being used to treat IBD, diabetes, and certain liver conditions, experimentation has led to the belief that there are other future uses for dogs. One such way in which milk thistle can be used is to counteract the effects of other medications, which are used to treat seizures and thyroid disease. Certain medications used to treat these conditions can cause irreparable liver and kidney damage. By countering the effects of these medications with milk thistle, vets believe it can help improve the condition of the liver, and prevent future problems from occurring.
Milk thistle can also be used to help promote faster recovery from adverse reactions to certain vaccines and illnesses. The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties found in milk thistle, can help your dog recover quickly from certain adverse reactions. Research has even come to suggest that milk thistle may be beneficial in the treatment of certain cancers; use of milk thistle (research done at Case Western University) helped prevent tumor development. In turn, research specialists believe milk thistle can be used during radiation or chemotherapy, to help the dog’s body recover quickly, following such treatment.
Although the current uses of milk thistle for dogs may be limited, research is promising, and continued research shows it has several benefits not only for dogs, but possibly for humans as well. Although it can be purchased at any health food store, it is best to speak to your vet, prior to beginning use of milk thistle for your dog, or any other pet for that matter. Not only to ensure it won’t adversely react to a medication or treatment they are currently undergoing, but also to ensure you do not give them more than the suggested dosage on a daily basis, which like any other medication, can cause complications or other issues with your dog.