Are there natural dewormers for dogs?

24th March 2017
Beryl Shuttleworth
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These are the facts:  Parasites can be extremely dangerous to your dog or cat. whippetAnd there is the really real chance that these parasites can be passed on to you and your human family as well.

There are several groups of parasites that can infect your pet – tapeworms, whipworms, roundworms, esophageal worms, thread worms, stomach worms and hookworms.  There are also parasitic protozoa (eg. toxoplasma, giardia, and coccidia).

Your vet will no doubt advise you to deworm your pets every few months. Drugs used commonly include Fenbendazole, Praziquantel or Ivermectin. Even when these different groups of drugs are used alternately or sparingly (only when the worm count shows necessity), parasites are becoming increasingly resistant to these treatments.

Here is the problem. Parasites can develop resistance to specific dewormers. This is resulting in the available chemical dewormers becoming less and less effective. This might not sound like a huge problem, but it actually is. When we run out of way to kill the parasites, we run out of ways to keep our pets alive. And our children.

Sounds like a rock and a hard place.

This is the point at which we need to look backwards in history. What did people use in ancient times? Did they use natural a natural dewormers for dogs? Where these things effective? And, if so, would reviving the older, more natural dewormers  for dogs help the growing resistance problem?

I think the answer is yes.

Firstly, a natural dewormer is a plant, which is not one molecule but thousands of different molecules. It is far more difficult for an organism such as a parasite to develop resistance to a large number of molecules than to one molecule.

Secondly, these plant molecules are completely different to the pharmaceutical dewormers on the market. Their chemical structure is different, their mode of action is different. So, even if there were only one effective molecule per herb (extremely unlikely IMHO), the parasite would be starting its journey towards resistance from point zero.

Thirdly, natural dewormers for dogs typically have far fewer side effects. And, if the pet’s body is not struggling to cope with the common side effects of chemical dewormers, it is more likely that the parasites are quickly and efficiently dealth with.

The challenge then became twofold:

  1. to find natural dewormers that are genuinely effective and have been scientifically proven to work
  2. these same herbs must be safe in the recommended doses

The herbs that I found that did satisfy my two conditions (effectiveness and safety) are:

  • Pumpkin seeds (Cucurbita pepo),
  • Cloves (Syzygium aromaticum) and
  • Wormwood (Artemisia absynthium)

Wormwood has been found to be active against ascarids (Ascaris), filarias, hookworms and  pinworms (Enterobius). Research has shown Cloves to be active against these nematodes as well as being far more effective than a chemical dewormer against the highly resistant Toxocara canis which is often fatal in puppies. Pumpkin seeds are proven to be highly effective against Tapeworms, as well as other parasites.

I found no studies that prove Diatomaceous Earth’s efficacy as a dewormer for dogs or cats. But it has such convincing anecdotal evidence that I decided to include it anyway.

Then I added Dandelion as a gentle laxative to help to get rid of the dead parasites. Cleansing Formula was born!


To end off, here is some feedback from a customer who dewormed her horse using Cleansing Formula: “PS, wanted to give you feedback on the deworming formula, thought you might find this interesting… I do regular fecal egg counts and before I tried the deworming formula (at an old yard) the count was average or just above necessary amount to deworm each time, when my horse was treated with your deworming formula her egg count went to absolutely 0 and stayed 0 for many, many months (longer than usual) – we even did multiple tests as we were worried it wasn’t accurate – but it stayed 0. Eventually it wore off and she had to be dewormed again, the new yard dewormed her with the vets suggested dewormer and within a short few months already I just did the fecal test again and the amount of EPG was shockingly high! Even though this yard is extremely clean and does totally new bedding each day and doesn’t cross contaminate any items… so I think it has been proven to me which dewormer is efficient/superior and will be using for certain in future. Your dewormer not only works fast but also works for longer than others…”

I love my job. 🙂

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