Herbs for pets talk donna kelleher


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Herbs for pets talk donna kelleher

  1. 1. Continuing Education Credit under the British Columbia Veterinary Medical Association (BCVMA)Date: Saturday October 4th 2003, Time: 2.30 – 5.30 pm, Cost: $45.00Location: Clearihue A206, UVicTopic: Ethnoveterinary Medicine (with a concentration on Western herbs)for both large and small animalsPresenters: Dr Evelyn Mathias & Dr. Donna KelleherDr Evelyn Mathias, Doctoral Degree in Veterinary Medicine, Institute of TropicalVeterinary Medicine, Justus-Liebig University, Giessen, West Germany.Dr. Donna Kelleher, Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine1994.President of the Washington Chapter of the American Holistic VMA.Program.2.30 – 2.35. Introduction to the program.2.35 – 3.00. Dr Mathias will introduce non-experimental validation of Ethnoveterinarymedicine.2.50 – 3.50. Dr Evelyn Mathias will discuss the ethnoveterinary treatments & practices ofa goat farmer in Vancouver Island from a veterinary point of view.3.50 – 4.05. Coffee, juice & muffins.4.05 – 5.00. Dr Kelleher will discuss the herbs that could be used for the followingsystems in small animals: gastrointestinal (conditions: vomiting, diarrhea, constipationand megacolon) neurological (conditions: fear and anxiety and seizures) and urological(conditions: interstitial cystitis and urinary tract infections and estrogen deficientincontinence). If time allows: salves to heal sprains as well as hot spots. Presentation ofcases on how to treat specific conditions in each system. How do the herbs work?5.00 – 5.30. Questions and discussion. Dr. Evelyn Mathias, Dr. Donna Kelleher.
  2. 2. Northwest Herbs in Veterinary Medicine Donna Kelleher, DVM
  3. 3. Herbs in the Pacific Northwest have been used for centuries to treat people andtheir use in veterinary medicine is in its early stages although public demand for safer,effective plant medicine is growing. My goal is to move away from dried herbs grownmiles away to fresh herbs I can grow or collect myself. Gastrointestinal Disorders: Be sure and rule out acute pathology that is better treated with conventionalmedicine: bloat, foreign body, intussusception, viral enteritis, pancreatitis. Checkregularly for dehydration, mucous membrane color, and elevated temperature. Where herbs and holistic medicine in general really shine is in the treatment ofchronic or recurrent disease. In tough inflammatory bowel disease cases, in gastritis orgastroenteritis or colitis where it is difficult to isolate a single causative organism orevent. In these cases, constitutional predisposition or the body’s inability to maintainhomeostasis is the major underlying problem. Holistic treatments such as NAET,acupuncture, chiropractic, herbs, homeopathy and above all, diet changes are all aimed atminimizing triggers (ie specific food allergies) and changing the body’s ability to copewith those triggers. Different herbs have different temperatures, move energy in different waysthroughout the body, and have an affinity towards organ systems. When herbal therapiesare introduced that attempt to normalize the body’s energetics, the best results occur. Insimple terms, if an animal is old, cold, Deficient (according to Chinese medicine weakpulses) then the better herbs to use are those that warm, strengthen and invigorate.Contrarily, if a young, warm, exuberant animal exhibits the very same symptoms as thecolder animal, than the treatment will be altogether different and involve more bitter,cooling herbs.
  4. 4. VomitingMotion Sickness: Cocculus indicus 30C (homeopathic) one hour before travel Ginger tea (Zingiber officinale): one-teaspoon fresh grated root per one-cup water Wild ginger tea leaf (Asarum caudatum): one leaf with one cup waterGinger is warming, sending the energy downward in the body. 1 gram of Zingiber wasfound to be more effective than 100 mg of dymenhydrinate (Dramamine) in reducingmotion sickness induced in blindfolded subjects. 1 Wild ginger warms up the patient andmakes humans sweat and can cause nausea with an overdose.Recurrent Vomiting: For more than one episode, hold off food for twelve to twenty-fourhours. Then bland diet. Blood work is unremarkable; the pancreatic enzymes are normal.
  5. 5. Try to find the underlying cause: For nervous animal to help parasympathetic tone:Chamomile (Matricaria recutita), fennel (Foeniculum officinale), peppermint (Menthapiperita) Warming, relaxing, volatile oils in all three plants are best consumed fresh as teaand become less bioactive when dried. The tincture or essential oil is also very effective.Fresh peppermint has a numbing, anesthetic action on the GI tract which is particularlyuseful for severe pain.
  6. 6. For old cold or genetically weak: Marshmallow root (Althaea officinalis) and fennel seed (Foeniculum officinale),Plantain (Plantago major), enzymesAlthaea is neutral, acts on the Spleen in Chinese medicine (or the pancreas) and theprimer demulcent containing mucopolysaccharides. I use it as a powder but the decoction(longer brewed than tea) is also effective. Not useful as a tincture. Althaea protectsupper gastrointestinal tract from local irritants. 2Fennel seeds are warming, and sweet, containing many vitamins and minerals and arethought to tonify the Spleen and Kidney in Chinese medicine—the root of geneticweakness.Mucilage from the leaves of Plantago major has been shown to have protective effectagainst aspirin-induced gastric ulcer in rats. 3 Traditionally plantain was used to tonifymucous membranes.
  7. 7. For food accumulation: Overeating or garbage gut, and associated cramps, bloating and pain: peppermint(Mentha piperita) or lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) tea. Carminative (reduces gas),sedative action, anti-inflammatory. One drop of peppermint oil in a gelcap may helpprevent diet-induced bloat.
  8. 8. Poor appetite in feline renal diseaseSage (Salvia officinalis) is warming and spreads the energy in an outward direction. Itrelieves muscle aches associated with liver stagnation, has a mild relaxation effect,antioxidant.4 There appears to be a direct effect on the kidneys too. 5 S. miltiorrhizaextracts could increase the glomerular filtration rate, increase excretion of urea andcreatinine, and decrease uremia. These effects appear to be due to lithospermate B. 6Try one drop of essential oil in small number 3 or 4 gelcap.
  9. 9. Vomiting—Heat ConditionsFor heat, red eyes, dry coat and low production digestive fluids, with body weakness:with heartburn, gas, and abdominal distension. Pulses: weak: gentian root (Gentianalutea, sceptrum, platypetala). This is a bitter or cold herb. As far as most texts report,the many species of Gentian including the latter two natives are equally effectivetherapeutically as the European lutea. 7 This herb is particularly good for dogs whoare so high-strung, perhaps with elevated liver enzymes that they have continuousdigestive problems. They have an alternating good and bad appetite. Research isprimarily on Gentiana lutea. It’s better to combine with ginger root to improve thetaste and send the energy downward. I use this herb for a short time in animals andthen switch to a less extreme bitter like wormwood.
  10. 10. For Liver fire and to aid fat metabolism: Hyperthyroidism in cats The primary complaint is pain with intermittent fever, vomiting, belching smellsof too much stomach acid. Eyes are red, but there is no dryness. These animals have beenon a fatty commercial pet food. Pulses are wiry, or slippery depending on degree ofDampness: Wormwood or mugwort (Artemesia sp). Strong antimicrobial, antiparasitic,anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective effects. As with gentian root there is an increase ofgastric secretion. It is both carminative and relaxing. The tincture was the notoriousdrink absinthe used in Europe and therefore it should be used as a tea only (not a tinctureor essential oil). Side effects from thujone are well known including cramping, vomiting,convulsions at high doses. I use 1 tablespoon of leaves with one cup water. The averageten pound cat gets a starting dose of one teaspoon.
  11. 11. For heat or vomitus containing blood indicative of ulceration: Licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra) low dose of a tincture or decoction for shortduration. (up to 2ml of a 1:5 tincture is equivalent to 400 mg of root per day for largedog). Active ingredients: triterpenoid saponins (glycyrrhizin which is very sweet,flavonoids, polysaccharides). In Chinese Medicine, it tonifies the Spleen, Heart andclears Heat. There is much research on its antiulcer effects. 8 The oral administration ofGlycyrrhiza extract significantly prevented gastric mucosal damage induced by ethanol inrats and increased surface mucin content. 9 Licorice root is contraindicated for patients with hypertension, hypokalemia, orCushings disease as it inhibits the breakdown of cortisol by 11-B-hydroxysteriddehydrogenase especially at high doses. It is excellent for gastric ulcers, to heal the side-effects of NSAIDS, for adrenocortical insufficiency or Addison’s. To prevent any side-effects I use it in combination with other herbs like marshmallow root.
  12. 12. For debilitated patients Especially after long course of antibiotics, to prevent the side-effects ofchemotherapy, or NSAID or corticosteroid induced gastritis: Fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium) The purple flowers dry easily and are plentiful.The tea is safe, bland tasting and can be taken in excess with no side-effects. It is mildlyanti-inflammatory to gastric mucosa. It improves the colon tone and acts as a gentlelaxative at the same time it soothes inflammation in the stomach. 10 It is also supposed tobe much more effective for fungal infections than pau de arco 11, although I have notpersonally used it this way. If you need an anti-inflammatory for cats, but are worried about NSAIDS, try bunchberry listed below.
  13. 13. Diarrhea: GastroenteritisFor large volume, fewer episodes. This is often associated with a diet change, orinfectious organism like giardia. Herbs can be very beneficial when you want to avoidantibiotics or at least try something else first. Coptis root contains alkaloids that are similar to antibiotic and anti-inflammatory effects of goldenseal root. 12 Both coptis and goldenseal are cold and should not be used long term. Decoct 1 tablespoon of dry or fresh root with 11/2 cups water for 40 min. covered. Coptis sinensis has been used in Chinese medicine for centuries for the same purpose.
  14. 14. There are many local herbs for diarrhea, many of which contain tannins. Blackberry root,strawberry root, blueberry root, salal leaf, wild rose root all quell diarrhea in decoctionform. rhodiola rosea/wild rose?
  15. 15. Diarrhea: ColitisStress related Colitis: for young, hyper dogs that get diarrhea every time theyboard at a kennel, try a tea with chamomile and marshmallow root or leaves. 2tablespoons of each herb dried or fresh with 2 cups of water. Dose: ½ teaspoonper 10 pounds.
  16. 16. For cats you are worried about salicylates but you would love to help their fever,joint inflammation or other pain, try bunch berry plant (Cornus canadensis) It isgreat for extended use. The anti-inflammatory effects of both the cornine andflavonoids, coupled with the astrigency of the tannins make it a mild herb forcolitis or chronic gastroenteritis. Use the whole plant including about an inch ofthe root. It is slightly cooling but you don’t have to worry about your olderpatients.
  17. 17. For patients that are more moist thanthey are dry, ie strings of mucous in saliva, damp skin, ear infections: try a combination of witch hazel (Hamamelis virginiana, or sp) which is neutral or slightly cool astringent with thin-leafed plantain (Plantago lanceolata) which is cooler and has a better anti-hemorrhagic effect. Internally, witch hazel leaf has a direct effect on the Spleen (in TCM) or the pancreas. Best part: no side-effects very safe. Tea with fresh or dried leaf. One tablespoon of each herb to one cup of water. Give a large dose. 2 tsp per 15 pounds body weight. I would use this for a maximum of five days. It should work quickly.
  18. 18. For animals with bloody or mucouscovered diarrhea, that is dry. There is no excess moisture, no propensity towards skin or ear infections. Try a combination of slippery elm bark powder and marshmallow root powder. Dose: 1 tsp per 15 pounds body weight. These herbs are demulcents and very safe, providing an intestinal Band-aid and often providing relief for both pet and owner quickly. Also very safe. This formula is nice because it is something the owners can have sitting on the shelf ready to use if needed.
  19. 19. Constipation and Megacolon Mild cases of constipation respond well to many complimentary therapiesincluding herbs. Whereas most cases of diarrhea are caused from excess heat,constipation can be caused by either lack of moisture, nutritional deficiency (iemagnesium or fiber), or lack of proper peristalsis. There are sometimes acombination of causes. It can be a cold or hot condition, so again look at the overallenergetics of the patients. I often try a small amount of magnesium with my protocol. Magnesiumnourishes the yin and draws fluid into the lumen, providing moisture. I give 25 mgper 15 pounds body weight. Changing the diet helps too, from a dry kibble to acanned food or homemade diet will often cure the problem. Plantago psyllium or ovata seeds or husks make a wonderful laxative. This is great for animals that are taking plenty of moisture but they are slightly older and not getting much catgrass or vegetables. It is milder than anthraquinone- containing herbs and can be used in combination with any other herb or drug. Pour one cup of boiling water over 1 tsp of either seed. 13 Cool then drink the mucilage and seeds. Alternative: ¼ tsp Metamucil moistened per ten pounds body weight.
  20. 20. Constipation and MegacolonAnthraquinone-containing herbs like Cascara sagrada (Rhamnus purshiana),Yellow dock (Rumex crispus), rhubarb (Rheum palmatum) Aloe. These arehelpful especially for dogs with fluid retention, who are overweight, perhaps withspinal or arthritis pathology or body trauma when you are not sure of the integrityof the nerve supply to the distal digestive tract. I use cascara when I don’t needliver detoxification and yellow dock when I do. CAUTION: Cascara bark needsdrying and curing for one to two years to be safe, otherwise it is stronglycathartic. Use dried bark only as a decoction 1 tablespoon to 11/2 cups water for40 min. Give 1 teaspoon per 15 pounds body weight. I have found it moreeffective as a tea than a powder. Start with a low dose and raise it to effect.
  21. 21. Megacolon I have never treated a case of megacolon without some conventional medications,and/or enemas. Be sure there is not a distal tumor causing obstruction and not toforget other conventional rule outs. Along with diet changes, megacolon can be well-treated with herbs if it is not too severe. I use a combination of the herbs listed above.One tea for a cat might be: 1 tablespoon dried cascara bark 1 tablespoon fresh rhubarb stem 1 tablespoon fresh yellow dock root ½ teaspoon psyllium seed 2 cups chicken broth Simmer for 40 min covered on low. Cool. Give 1 teaspoon three times a day for10 pound cat. Raise dose as needed to induce bowel movement. I would also add 25mg of magnesium and ½ teaspoon of fish oil or flax oil to canned food.
  22. 22. Fear and Anxiety Most nervines are slightly cooling and calming. They are very effective forfireworks, thunderstorms, and to prevent stress-related diseases, ie for seizures. Thefirst thing I do is assess how anxious the pet really is. For example does the dog jumpthrough the front window during the fireworks or does he shake in the corner. This isimportant because if there is a mild anxiety, I will often use rather mild but veryeffective herbs, such as chamomile or lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) particularly ifthere are also digestive disturbances. For more serious cases of nervous tension, the relaxation tea I include in mybook 14 is very effective. However if the patient is jumping through barriers, I wouldadd conventional drugs as well.
  23. 23. Relaxation Tea:3 quarts low-sodium chicken broth or water1/3 cup passion flower1/3 cup chamomile flowers¼ cup cut oatstraw leaves and stems¼ cup packed hops flowers¼ cup scullcap leaves¼ cup lobellia leaves1 tablespoon powdered kava
  24. 24. Combine all ingredients in a non-aluminum pan, cover, and simmer on LOW for20 min. Remove from heat, and allow to set for at least 6 hours. The dose is 1tablespoon per 25 pounds of body weight. Give the tea 2-3 times a day dependinghow stressed animal is. It takes over an hour to take effect but should not cause oversedation. You can freeze most of it for later use in ice cube tray. Store ice cubes in afreezer bag to prevent freezer burn. They will keep for a year in freezer. Some cats love valarian as they like catnip and can even attack the bottle! Give acat 1/3 350 mg capsule of valarian root or try the native Sitka valarian root indecoction form. I have little experience with it.
  25. 25. For stress-induced seizures in dogs I use a combination of vervain (Verbena officinalis) leaves, scullcap (Scutellarialateriflora), and passion flower (Passiflora incarnata). The active ingredients areflavonoids which preserve well in tinctures. Give 5-8 drops of tincture per 40 poundsbody weight before stressful event. The vervain and passion flower help the liver andheart while the scullcap has the wonderful effect of resting the nervous system whileit nourishes and strengthens it. 15 I tend to avoid large doses of kava and consider it to be too strong by itself formost animals. It also has been shown to injure the liver in high doses.
  26. 26. The Treatment of stress-related epilepticseizures in a four-year old Dachshund. Donna Kelleher, DVMAbstract: A four-year-old Dachshund presented with a yearlong history of seizures withincreasing duration and severity. The owner noted that usually before seizures, ananxiety-causing event (fireworks, loud noises, and dinner parties) would cause the dog topace and pant and later that night the dog would seizure. The prophylactic use ofverbena tea (blue vervain) was helpful not only in averting potential seizures, but also foracupuncture treatments which would also cause the dog anxiety. Vervain tea became aneffective way to not only calm the dog, but also to reduce seizure episodes.Signalment: A four-year old neutered male Dachshund, ten pounds, with a nervouspersonality.History: Joey presented with a life time history of thin body weight, poor hair coat aroundface and chest and other ventral locations (the underside correlating with yin in TCM)and a very weak constitution. He has tended to whimper and quiver during treatments.He had a history of between six to eight seizures a month. After the first few acupuncturetreatments to treat phlegm wind and weak Spleen qi, he seizures much less frequently,once or twice a month. He also has a history of weak digestion, vomiting easily withbouts of diarrhea. A homemade diet, monthly acupuncture and herbs to dissolve phlegmwind (Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang and Jiang Can) have helped him tremendously.Joey is not on any conventional medications to control epileptic seizures. His bloodworkhas always been normal but he has not had an MRI. His seizures are less frequent andoften just partial twitching seizures with the head and neck twitching to one side. The preand post ictal periods are a lot less noticeable. (Before treatments his post ictal periodwas over ten minutes of vocalizing and blindness.)
  27. 27. This patient has been under my care for over two years. For the past several months, wehave used vervain tea to help with anxiety related events, like coming to see me, gettingnails trimmed, having parties and visitors, or going to new places. We have seen areduction in the numbers of seizures and have since discovered that they have beenstress-related. The tea allows for the acupuncture to occur without stress, perhapsmaking it more effective.Treatment: Acupuncture was performed for three weekly treatments, and then once amonth for two and a half years. Points have varied little over the years but consisted of :GB 14, GB 9, GB 20, GV 14, LIV 8, HT 7. Since December 2002, I focused more on theSpleen and Phlegm: GB 20, ST 8, ST 40, HT 7, ST 36, Yintang. Through NAET allergy testing, it was determined that Joey has a grain sensitivity,which I recommended avoiding for the remainder of his life. In December of 2002, wechanged the herbal formula from Gastrodia/Uncaria (a classic Liver wind formula) to BanXia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang (1/2 gram twice a day with food of the KPC extract granules).After this change, his weight increased to normal and his hair grew in nicely. For thepast six months, nothing has changed but the addition of vervain tea given on average 3-4times a week. The recipe is as follows: ¼ cup dried blue vervain leaves (very goodquality picked within two months of infusion) brewed into a chicken broth decoction with1 cup broth simmered for 5 minutes in a covered steel (non-aluminum) pot. Half of thetea was refrigerated and the rest was frozen into small cocktail ice cubes and transferredto a freezer bag for long term keeping. This way one cube could be later defrosted andused if an episode occurred. Each cube would last two days since the dose was 2teaspoons in a small amount of cottage cheese.
  28. 28. Discussion: Chinese herbalists have long regarded Verbena to be specific for debility withdepression due to Liver Stagnant Qi, also key in the treatment of epilepsy. As a nervine,it relaxes all the nerves of the body. It has been used to treat pain and inflammation.Most references mentioned Verbena as a nervine tonic containing nervoustrophorestoratives, being important for weak constitutions and poor nervous systemfunction with the unique ability to rest the nervous system while simultaneouslyregenerating it. References site verbenalin, hastatoside and verbascoside as the most activeingredients16, and many studies have been done on each of these components. It has beenshown to be hepatoprotective, prevent gastrointestinal ulcers, and protect the nervoussystem from toxic damage. 17 Blue vervain is considered by North American herbalists to be a less importantmedicine but for many cultures, it was important to folk medicine. In South America,especially Brazil, it is called Gervâo and has many different uses, including as a digestivetonic, febrifuge, vermifuge, and in the treatment of allergies. Contraindications includepregnancy, low blood pressure (mild vasodilation properties), or when the patient istaking blood thinners or in cardiovascular disease. 18Conclusion: Vervain appears to be a powerful herb in animals and for particular use instress-related epileptic seizures. It is easy to grow and make into a palatable tea for dogsand mixed with food. In this case, Joey’s seizure episodes and duration both improveddramatically. It is my opinion that it is overlooked and valuable.
  29. 29. The Urinary Tract Each year I use more herbs for the urinary tract and find them to be extremelyeffective for cats, perhaps less so for dogs. Many of my cases of interstitial cystitisrespond so well to the teas, I rarely see them again. First of all, it is important to findout the cause of urinary tract disease. Diet needs to be closely examined especially ifthe pH of the urine is not normal. Many cases of interstitial cystitis are simply toomuch Damp Heat in the bladder. This can be caused by emotional turmoil (ownerleaves town or prepares to leave town) from Liver fire spilling into the Bladder. Orthe cause can be weak Kidneys, which cooling tannin-rich herbs may injure overtime. For urgency to urinate, accompanied by emotional disturbance or oversensitivity: Use herbs that clear heat from the bladder (yarrow is my favorite), soothe the bladder wall (marshmallow, slippery elm), calm the nervous system (chamomile, vervain) and also help clear liver fire (vervain, yellow dock) For chronic urinary tract infections associated with weak Kidney, I use Chinese herbs including Rehmannia, yarrow and marshmallow root
  30. 30. For stubborn urinary tract infections that are bacterial I use yarrow (to clear blood and heat, also antiseptic), uva ursi (to clean bladder wall), Equisetum arvense, nettles (slightly diuretic, nourish urinary tract), Oregon grape root or goldenseal (berberine is very antibacterial) All in tea form. Equisetum contains high silica content that may irritate the kidneys if used improperly. Tea rather than bulk herb gathered early in the Spring is best. ¼ cup each herb in 3 cups water or chicken broth. Give ½ teaspoon per 10 pounds body weight twice to three times a day. Recheck urinalysis after seven days provided symptoms clear.
  31. 31. For overall immune system suppression,Cushing’s disease, use of corticosteroid therapy I use Echinacea leaf or root to stimulate phagocytosis, 19particularly on the mucous membranes of the body. This herb alone has strong antimicrobial activity. Polyacetylenes extracted from the roots were reported to have activity against E. coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. 20 A combination of Echinacea root, plantain leaf, yarrow, and Oregon grape root in high doses is safe and will take care of most bladder infections.
  32. 32. The Treatment of Interstitial Cystitis in a five-year old Female Cat Donna Kelleher, DVMAbstract: A five-year old female spayed cat presented with a one-year history ofrecurrent, intermittent interstitial cystitis. The owner reported that the episodes occurredafter the cat was stressed by the owners frequent business trips. Although the cat wasresponsive to conventional corticosteroid therapy, the owner pursued other options. Theonly complimentary treatment given was a yarrow flower, marshmallow root andplantain leaf tea, which cured the cat and provided the owner with a safe, accessibleimmediate treatment and alternative to corticosteroid therapy should symptoms return.Signalment: A five-year old domestic short hair female spayed cat.History: The feline patient, Penelope, developed stranguria with increased urgency andfrequency of urination. (Her owner found her yowling running back and forth to the litterbox.) on four occasions, each associated with the owner’s traveling schedule. Theveterinarian diagnosed sterile or interstitial cystitis on each occasion. Urinalysis results:specific gravity: 1.030; pH 6.5; hematuria, small numbers of white blood cells. Cultureresults: no growth after 72 hours. Urinalysis and culture were done only on the first twoepisodes, the last two were treated symptomatically with low-dose prednisilone (2.5mgdaily for 3 days, then every other day for 10 days) The cat was not treated withantibiotics. Upon presentation to me, the cat was asymptotic and not on medication; Theowner was seeking safe options to the conventional medication.
  33. 33. Discussion: Retention of urine indicates Damp-heat in the Bladder or KidneyDeficiency which is common in older patients. Pain before urination indicates stagnationof Qi in the Lower Burner, pain during urination indicates Heat in the Bladder and Painafter urination indicates Qi Deficiency. 21 With the slight diuretic qualities of plantain leaf and yarrow flower, animals thatnormally would be painful and stop drinking, continue to flush valuable fluid through thekidney and bladder. According to the principles of Chinese medicine, the Liver storesanger, frustration and agitation from the owner leaving the cat alone. This Liver firespills into the Bladder causing hematuria. Perhaps the corticosteroids inducedpolydypsia, providing a flushing action to the urinary tract and helping symptoms. Yarrrow (Achillea millefolium) draws heat to the skin (is a diaphoretic), tonifiesDeficiency and clears Heart Phlegm. It’s specific actions, temperature, and propertiesvaries depending upon what other herbs are used with it. It is used to treat fever, helpwith congestion with flu, as an immune system tonic, as an antihypertensive, and as anastringent and homeostatic. 22 It has been used to treat urinary tract infections for manygenerations.23Yarrow’s anti-inflammatory properties may come from its methanolextracts and other essential oils. 24
  34. 34. Althaea officinalis clears Damp Heat, nourishes Kidney Deficient Yin, moistening themucosal surfaces of the body. It is a classic mucilaginous, demulcent, anti-inflammatory.Various types of polysaccharides are attributed to this action. Plantago lanceolata leaves are cooling and mildly demulcent and used for cystitiswith hematuria, hemorrhoids with bleeding and irritation, and respiratory catarrh. Thereare many articles on plantain and immunomodulatory activities of various activeingredients, most notably flavonoids, monoterpenoids, triterpenoids, iridoid glycosidesand phenolic compounds found in most Plantago species. 25Conclusion: The use of herbs, in this case plantain, yarrow and marshmallow rootprovide a good alternative to conventional medicine for sterile or interstitial cystitis andcan provide the owner with a safe preventative medicine.
  35. 35. It is the author’s opinion that stronger tannin containing herbs like uva ursi and junipershould be reserved for active bacterial infections of the urinary tract, while the milderformula seems to be enough to help sterile cystitis especially in cats.1 Mowrey DB, Clayson DE. Lancet (8273): 655-657 (1982)2 Althea. In: Hansel R, Keller K, Rimpler H et al. (ed). Hagers Handbook, 5 th edn. Vol. 4: Drogen A-D.Springer-Verlag, Berlin-Heidelberg, Germany, pp 233-239 (1992)3 Obolentseva GV, Khadzhai yal, Vidyukova AI et al. Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine77:256-257 (1974)4 Ross, J. Combining Western Herbs and Chinese Medicine. Greenfields Press. Seattle. 2003. 667-679.5 Zhang JR et al. Shanghai Zhongyiyao Zazhi (Shanghai Journal of Traditional Chinces Medicine) (1): 17(1978)6 Bruneton J. Pharmacognosy: Phytochemistry Medicinal Plants, 2 nd edn. Lavoisier, Paris, France (1999)7 Ross, J. Combining Western Herbs and Chinese Medicine. Greenfields Press. Seattle. 2003.8 Mills, S, Bone K. Principles and Practice of Phytotherapy:Modern Herbal Medicine. ChurchillLivingstone, Edinburgh, UK (2000)9 Goso Y, Ogata Y, Ishihar K et al. Comp Biochem Physiol C Pharmacol Toxicol Endorcrinol 113 (1): 17-21 (1996)10 Moore, Michael. Medicinal Plants of the Pacific West. Red Crane Books. Santa Fe, NM. 1993. 137-138.11 Sellar, Adam. Founder of School of Pacific Botanical Medicine.Oral information from herbal class.12 Tilford, Gregory. Edible and Medicinal Plants of the West. Mountain Press. Missoula. 1997. Pg 4113 Ody, Penelope. The Complete Medicinal Herbal. Dorling Kindersley. London. 199314 Kelleher, D. The Last Chance Dog and Other True Stories of Holistic Animal Healing. Scribner. 200315 Tierra, Michael. Planetary Herbology. Lotus Press. 1988.16 Wichtl M, 1994. Herbal Drugs and Phytopharmaceuticals: A handbook for practice on a scientific basis.Norman Grainger Bissett, Ed. CRC Press, Boca Raton17 Sheng, G. Q., et al. “Protective effect of verbascoside on 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion-inducedneurotoxicity in PC12 cells.” Eur. J. Pharmacol. 2002; 451(2): 119–2418 Inouye, H. et al. 1974. Planta Medica 25:285 stress-induced tachycardia?19 Bauer VR. Jurcic K, Puhlmann J et al. Arzneimittelforschung 38(2): 276-281 (1988)20 Schulte Ke, Ruecker T, Perlick J. Arzneim-Forsch 17:825-829 (1967)21 Maciocia, G. The Foundations of Chinese Medicine. Churchill Livingstone 198922 Ross, J. Combining Western Herbs and Chinese Medicine. Greenfields Press Seattle 200323 Peng, Yan, Wan, Liu. “65 cases of urinary tract infection treated by total acid of Achillea alpina.” Journalof Traditional Chinese Medicine. 1983 Sep; 3 (30 217-8)24 Candon, Unlu, et. al. “Antioxidant and antimicrobial activity of the essential oil and methanol extracts ofAchillea millefolium” Journal Ethnopharmacology. 2003. Aug; 87 (2-3) 215-2025 Chiang, Ng, Chiong et al. Planta Med. 2003. Jul; 69 (7): 600-4