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Natural Eye Care for Aging Dogs


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any owners of middle-aged and older dogs worry about their


pets’ declining eyesight. Cloudy eyes are of particular concern, but that is not necessarily a sign that a dog is going blind, advises Shawn Messon- nier, a doctor of veterinary medicine practicing in Plano, Texas. “While cataracts strike many older dogs, a more common condi- tion is lenticular or nuclear sclerosis, a thickening of the lens of the eye,” says Messonnier. He explains that this nor- mal change causes the eye to appear somewhat cloudy or gray, similar to a cataract. However, unlike a cataract, this type of sclerosis does not interfere with the pet’s vision. “Veterinarians can easily tell the difference between these conditions,” he says. “No treat- ment is necessary for lenticular scle- rosis; cataracts are often treated with carnosine drops or with surgery.” For prevention, Messonnier sug- gests minimizing toxins that can cause inflammation throughout an animal’s body, not just the eyes. This means using blood titer testing instead of an- nual vaccinations, reducing the use of flea and tick chemicals, using natural pet foods and minimizing the use of conventional medications.


He also recommends feeding a pet nutrients that contribute to health and reduce inflammation and cellular damage, including fish oil, probiotics and antioxidants like bilberry, which supports eye health.


Dulse Seaweed a Heart Health Powerhouse D


ulse (palmaria palmata), a protein-rich red seaweed, could become a new protein source to compete with current protein crops like soybeans, according to scientists at Ireland’s Teagasc Food Research Centre. Dulse harvested from October to January usually has the highest protein content. This functional food also contributes levels of essential amino acids such as


leucine, valine and methionine, similar to those contained in legumes like peas or beans. It may even help protect against cardiovascular disease. The Agriculture and Food Development Authority reports that for the first time, researchers have identi- fied a renin-inhibitory peptide in dulse that helps to reduce high blood pressure, like ACE-1 inhibitors commonly used in drug therapy.


natural awakenings


October 2013


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