Honey; the Gooey Golden Nectar That Aids Your Westie’s Health…naturally.

Manuka Honey has very powerful healing properties. Historically, medicine men and healers used it for an array of ailments and Honey has been an extremely useful tool and a valued natural medicine for centuries. It is not used, or has very limited use, in modern medicine, however, as there is no science to support these claims.

For many years it has been noted that honey may be beneficial in helping humans suffering from liver issues, gastrointestinal problems, and even cardiovascular disease. It has also been mentioned in various studies that highlight the benefits of the anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties of honey, it has been shown to be beneficial at fighting bacterial infections and may help the healing process when used to treat wounds as it possibly stimulates the immune response and helps the healing process.

Real Manuka Honey is produced in New Zealand. The honey is made from the nectar the bees collect from the common species of manuka bush found in the wetlands, coastal areas, and lowland forests. The mix of the nectar and the way the bees make the honey gives it its amazingly unique healing properties.

Honey is a beautiful product, completely natural, and is one of Mother Nature’s wonderful gifts to this planet. It has the ability to heal inside and out and it’s incredibly popular with not only humans, but with dog owners who use it extensively too.

Raw Manuka Honey not only tastes delicious it is incredibly versatile too. This amber nectar is used to treat anything from environmental allergies (the jury is still out on that one), bacterial skin infections, hot spots, kennel cough, sore throats, and gastrointestinal issues.

Honey of course provides many nutrients for our Westies including Vitamins A, B Complex, Vitamins C, D, E and K. It is also packed with several minerals such as magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, and calcium – all essential for a healthy dog.

Just remember if you have a diabetic dog, they should not have honey internally because of the high sugar content.  You could use it externally but make sure the dog cannot lick it.

Puppies of under 12 months of age have an under developed immune system so it’s best to avoid honey until they are over 1 years old.

It’s also best to avoid honey if your dog has had a reaction to a bee sting.

Out of all the honeys you can purchase, the most benefits are derived from Manuka Honey and this is due to its anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties. If you wish to use Manuka Honey on a wound, then you will need to purchase a UMF grade of at least 10+. Apply directly to the wound, and cover with a dog proof bandage.  This is to stop your Westie from tucking into this wonderful amber delight before the honey can perform it’s healing magic. Obviously only use on minor wounds, anything serious you will need veterinary intervention.

Kennel cough spreads like wildfire between dogs and there is no known cure for it that I am aware of, but a bit of Manuka Honey can give the dog a little bit of relief.  If you’ve got a fuss pot that won’t eat it off a spoon then smear its favourite treat in it, that normally works, or mix with goats yoghurt and feed.

It has been believed that by consuming small amounts of local honey it can help with allergy relief, but there is no evidence that I know of to support this so the jury is still out at this time.

Manuka Honey is also great for oral health, so if your Westie’s breath turns you a bit green then a little manuka honey may help with bacteria in the mouth and gut.

How much Honey can I give my Westie?

1/2tsp per day for a Westie that weighs 10kg

So Westie owners, we have the wonderful black and yellow buzzy things in New Zealand and Mother Nature to thank for this amazing golden sticky goo that does so many wonderful things for us and our Westies.

So, let’s get inventive about how we provide this wonderful stuff to our Westies.  How about mixing a teaspoon with some yoghurt, freeze it with a couple of blueberries and you have a little lolly packed full of goodness. Or how about adding a teaspoon to your doggy treat recipes for a change?

Remember the more eating experiences you can give your dog the healthier they are, and the less likely they are to be fussy with food. Give your Westies the food they deserve to help them thrive and live a long and healthy life, and of course they’ll give you more kisses and love you even more than they already do.

Sue Makepeace is the Founder of the Westie Advice Group on Facebook and she is also a Certified Raw Dog Food Nutrition Specialist.

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