Alfalfa Benefits for Dogs

Alfalfa Facts

Alfalfa Benefits for Dogs The plant alfalfa is rich in protein and minerals (such as calcium, copper, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium, silicon and zinc). In addition, it contains vitamins A, B1, B12, C, D, E, and K.

Alfalfa is considered nutritive because of the protein and all the minerals and vitamins it contains.

Alfalfa also has diuretic, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These therapeutic properties are often used by holistic vets to help dogs with inflammatory diseases, such as arthritis, bladder irritation, and even cancer.

The herb alfalfa is widely available at health food stores in the forms of capsules or liquid extract. The bulk powdered dried herb is also available at health food stores or online.

Common Uses of Alfalfa on Dogs

  • For older dogs: This herb is one of the best for dog arthritis and gout.

    Recommended Dosage: 1/2 teaspoon powdered herb daily for small dogs; 1 teaspoon daily for medium dogs; and 2 teaspoons daily for large dogs.

  • For Anemic Dogs: Alfalfa has a high Vitamin K content and is beneficial for dogs with bleeding disorders which result from long-term use of medicines such as antibiotics.

    It helps with anemia and dizziness caused by a lack of blood flow.

    (Caution, however, should be taken as Vitamin K has been linked to cases of Heinz-body anemia in dogs (and cats) when taken in large quantity.)

    Recommended Dosage: 1/2 teaspoon powdered herb daily for small dogs; 2/3 teaspoon daily for medium dogs; and 1 teaspoon daily for large dogs.
  • For Dogs with Dry Skin: Alfalfa is often used by holistic vets as a tonic for the blood. With healthier blood and better circulation, skin condition improves.

    Recommended Dosage: 1/4 teaspoon of powdered herb daily for small dogs; 1/2 teaspoon daily for medium dogs; and 3/4 teaspoon daily for large dogs.

  • For Dogs with Sluggish Digestion: Thanks to its trace minerals and rich digestive enzymes, alfalfa benefits dogs with poor appetite, gas and sluggish digestion.

    Recommended Dosage: Same dosage as for dogs with dry skin.

  • For Dogs with Problems in the Urinary Tract System: Alfalfa is helpful to the kidney in general. In particular, because of its alkalinizing effect, alfalfa is good for treating bladder irritation.

    Recommended Dosage: Same dosage as for older dogs.

  • For Cancer Prevention: Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, alfalfa is also a good herb for cancer prevention.

    Recommended Dosage: Same dosage as for older dogs.

References
J.A. Duke, The Green Pharmacy Herbal Handbook: Your Comprehensive Reference to the Best Herbs for Healing (Rodale Books, 2000).
C. Schwartz, Four Paws Five Directions: A Guide to Chinese Medicine for Cats and Dogs (Celestial Arts Publishing, 1996).
M.L. Wulff-Tilford and G.L. Tilford, Herbs for Pets (Bowtie Press, 1999).