First of all, I want to make certain that it is understood that this article is written with the intention of giving information and not as a prescription medical treatment for dogs. Calendula officinalis is the common marigold, a member of the daisy family, sometimes known as the pot marigold that is grown in many gardens. It is not related to the French or African marigold. It is used as a healing solution in salves, lotions and shampoos and its range reaches far deeper than the skin.
Calendula is among the first herbs to consider in minor first aid situations. The broad array of medicinal compounds in the flowers of the plant, including various essential oils, flavonoids, triterpene alcohol’s and carotenes, combine to help speed cell reproduction and inhibit bacteria and fungi at the site of an injury.
For minor cuts, insect bites, abrasions or post-surgical incisions, a calendula salve (an oil based product) will bring quick soothing relief to pain and swelling, while helping the body to heal.
To make the salve is simple, but takes some time. First you need ½ cup of dried calendula flowers and ½ cup of extra virgin olive oil, add to a pint jar, seal and let sit in a sunny spot for at least a week or more until the mixture is a golden yellow. Strain through cheesecloth at least twice. Then you need 1/8 cup of bee’s wax and 40 drops of lavender essential oil heated gently in a pot until the bee’s wax has melted, add it all to the strained bottle of calendula flowers and oil. Screw the top on tightly and keep it in a cool dark place and it will last a year or so. It is not toxic to your dog and actually if it is licked, the salve has healing internal benefits also.
You can also make a healing rinse which is good for flea bites, poison ivy, eczema, sunburn and/or for other various forms of inflammatory dermatitis. This “tea” can be added to your dog’s drinking water (1 cup to 1 quart) as an aid for sore throats, urinary tract infections and/or bacterial infections in the upper gastrointestinal tract.
To make the “rinse” or “tea,” simply boil one quart of water in a stainless steel pot, add ½ cup of fresh dried flowers (can be bought in health food stores), remove from the heat and cover. Allow it to steep until cool, strain through a sieve. Bottle it and use as needed.
This herb is great not only for our pets, but is healthful for humans. Your health food store can be a source of many products that can be used on your pet without any side effects. However, always be cautious and call your vet or your holistic person before your try anything new on your dog.
There are many home remedies that work wonders and if you are looking for something to entertain yourself, in a quiet moment, go on the Internet and explore. There is a wealth of information floating out in space, just waiting for you to see. Good luck and have fun along with good health for you and your pet.