“Over the last year, I had issues with my black lab having allergies to I don’t know what! I tried prednisone, allergy pills and many other things to try to cure him. Then someone told me to start giving him organic apple cider vinegar, which has magically cured him. No more itchy, sensitive skin thanks to this miracle product!” – Jennifer, The Saratoga Dog Lover
Humans have reaped the benefits of raw, unfiltered, unpasteurized and unheated organic apple cider vinegar for generations. There are benefits for ailments ranging from digestive issues to itches and rashes, to getting rid of warts and making your hair shinier!
So, wouldn’t it stand to reason that apple cider vinegar could be good for your dog too?
As it turns out, most vets and dog experts would agree.
What is apple cider vinegar?
Very simply, apple cider vinegar is fermented apple cider. It mainly consists of acetic acid, with levels of citric, lactic and malic acids as well. Apple cider vinegar is also rich in potassium. While, in and of itself, apple cider vinegar does not contain high levels of nutrients, it does help the body absorb and digest nutrient-rich foods more easily. Hence, it is an excellent supplement to your diet – and your dogs – in most cases.
Where can you buy apple cider vinegar?
You can buy organic vinegar at most local grocery stores or online at Amazon.com. Click on the link below to order now and get free, next day shipping if you have Amazon Prime.
How can I use apple cider vinegar for my dog?
There are many, many ways people use vinegar, and there are multiple ways you can use it for your pooch too! Here are a few you can try. (We recommend using only organic apple cider vinegar with ‘the mother’.)
Fleas will say, “No, Pleeeeease!”
Many dog owners use cider vinegar on their dogs’ skin and fur to kill or repel fleas. If your dog already has fleas, mix about a gallon each of water and apple cider vinegar with about a ¼ cup of dish soap (or, if you have an organic shampoo that you prefer, that works too).
Being careful to avoid your dog’s eyes, work the mixture into his/her fur and gently massage the skin. Rinse and dry your dog carefully. The mixture does the double duty of killing/drowning the fleas, while also repelling them with the taste and smell.
Caution: if your dog already has irritated skin or if he has unhealed scratches or cuts, do not use this treatment because the acid in apple cider vinegar will cause a burning, stinging sensation on the cuts or scrapes.
Many dog owners also use equal parts apple cider vinegar and water in a spray bottle. By spraying it on your dog twice a week, before going out for walks and play, it will help to repel fleas.
A doggy digestive aid!
Organic apple cider vinegar can be very beneficial as a digestive aid, while boosting your dog’s immune system at the same time. If your dog also has allergies, such as our black lab buddy mentioned above, it can treat those allergies. Depending on the size of your dog, add 1 -2 teaspoons to the water bowl each day. If your dog doesn’t like the taste of vinegar in its water, you can disguise it by adding it to his food or giving it to him with a spoonful of raw honey or peanut butter.
Caution: before giving your dog anything, be sure to first consult your veterinarian. While apple cider vinegar has been shown to be extremely effective in helping with digestive issues – and even reducing intestinal gas and smelly poop – it can cause bladder stones in some dogs. Its high level of acidity can also exacerbate problems for dogs who are already suffering from irritated intestines.
If your dog suffers from yeast infections in her ears, using a cotton ball soaked in a solution of apple cider vinegar and water can really do the trick. Gently wipe the ears until debris and gunk have been removed.
Caution: the same rule applies to the inside of your dog’s ears that applies to the skin on his body. If the ears are already irritated, or if he has been scratching them, applying apple cider vinegar will burn. The last thing we want to do is make our precious pooches more uncomfortable!
Be an informed pet owner
As with anything else that seems like an all-around wonder treatment, it is always best to talk with your veterinarian first before you begin to administer any new treatments to your dog. But, if a natural, non-chemical substance can give your dog relief from allergies or fleas, help boost his immune system, and give him a shiny coat of fur, it’s worth considering.