Pet remedies for common cat and dog diseases of the mouth, neck and larynx

Andrew Jones

The head and neck area of your pet are very important areas to help diagnose some common diseases. It is important that you become comfortable examining your pet - an early diagnosis of an enlarged lymph node may mean the difference between life and death. For a few specific diseases, including gingivitis and hyperthyroidism in cats, I explain a few natural pet remedies.

The Mouth
Examine the outside of your pets' mouth first. The base of the chin can become infected in cats with a condition called feline acne.
One effective treatment for this is topical Calendula. The lips should appear smooth and have no signs of inflammation.
Pay close attention to lip folds in the large breed dogs with lots of extra skin. If saliva accumulates, then wipe the area with a medicated antiseptic such as hibitane.
Lift up your pets lips and examine their teeth. The gums should appear a healthy light pink color (except in breeds such as Chows with dark pigment). Pay close attention to the area where the teeth begin. Inflamed gums appear a darker red and may even bleed if you touch them.
This is a sign of gingivitis and may mean your pet needs a dental cleaning. There are some little known home remedies for gingivitis.

SUPPLEMENTS. For cats with recurring gingivitis, lactoferrin can be helpful. The dose is one half a 350mg capsule daily mixed in syrup or baby food. Propolis is a product of honeybees and is an oral antiseptic. It is applied topically to the inflamed gums.

HEALING LOTION. Calendula lotion can be used to heal ulcers in the mouth and promote healing of damaged tissue.

Examine all the teeth (42 in a dog), (32 in a cat). The teeth should not be broken or cracked. None of the tooth roots should be visible.
In cats pay close attention to where the teeth join the gum line. They are prone to a condition called FORL (Feline Odontoclastic Resorptive Lesion). The tooth actually erodes at his spot. Unfortunately, the only answer may be a dental extraction, but this is important to discover early because they are very painful.

The Neck
Palpate base of the jaw and the beginning of the neck. In this area you can feel the corner of the bottom jaw (mandible).
Here you should be able to feel the submandibular lymph nodes and parotid salivary gland. Most of the time you won't feel anything in this area.
If there are palpable swellings, then the lymph nodes are probably enlarged suggesting an infection in the body. There are two other area that I routinely check the lymph nodes.
The area in front of the shoulder blades has the prescapular lymph nodes. The area behind the knees in the rear legs has the popliteal lymph nodes. The lymph nodes may be enlarged due to a local infection, a generalized infection or even due to cancer.
Any lymph node swelling is serious, so have your veterinarian look for the causes of the swelling, but it is important to catch the signs early. Your pet may benefit from some immune stimulation. In my e-book, I discuss the use of specific herbs in cancer.

GREEN TEA (CAMELLIA) may stimulate the immune system and inhibit tumor growth. Standardized green tree extract dosage is 200mg per 40 lbs daily.

ESSIAC TEA. This contains a combination of herbs, which may inhibit tumor growth.

GARLIC. It has antioxidant and immune enhancing properties. It is best used in conjunction with other antioxidants. When given at high doses it can cause anemia in your pet, so it is best used in conjunction with your veterinarian. The dog dose is 1 clove per 50 lbs daily; the cat dose is 1/8 clove daily.

The Larynx and Thyroid gland
The last area of the neck to focus on is your pets Adams apple (larynx). Feel for your pets' airway with your thumb and forefinger. Move your hand along the windpipe (trachea) until you feel the large firm cartilage in the middle of the neck. This is the larynx. In palpation you should find that with mild pressure your pet shows no discomfort and doesn't cough.
In cats pay close attention to the area around the larynx as this is where the thyroid gland sits. In cats with hyperthyroidism the gland is enlarged and often palpable. If your cat is 10 years and older you should regularly check the thyroid gland and if it is enlarged, have your veterinarian screen for hyperthyroidism. There are some things you can do at home for your hyperthyroid cat.

CARNITINE. A supplement which has been found to be effective in reversing the signs of hyperthyroid disease in people. The starting cat dose is 250mg daily.

BUGLEWEED (Lycopus europeus) and MELISSA (Melissa officinalis). These are herbs that have been used in combination to combat the effects of hyperthyroid disease. Bugleweed has been shown to decrease thyroid hormone levels in rats 24 hours after administration. The standard dose is 1 drop per pound of the tinctures given twice daily.

If some of these tips and treatments has helped you, then you absolutely, positively MUST also go through my book, Veterinary Secrets Revealed.
About the Author
2006 All rights reserved
Dr. Andrew Jones, a practicing Veterinarian, has a special interest in alternative, natural remedies for pets. His book, Veterinary Secrets Revealed, a holistic pet health manual, is at:

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