What Are the Benefits of Valerian Root for Dogs in Safe Doses?
If you are familiar with valerian root, you know that it a great for those nights when you are restless and cannot sleep. Or you may have no clue what it is! So, what is valerian root? What is it used for? What are the benefits? Also, is valerian root safe for dogs? Lots of questions that we are happy to answer for you.
Valerian root is a grassland plant demic to Asia and Europe. It is grown and planted in parts of North America and China. Initially, it was used as a sedative but over the years it has proven to have therapeutic benefits for those with anxiety, insomnia, depression, premenstrual syndrome, headaches, and menopause symptoms. The valerian root increases the amino acids in your brain. A low amino acid (neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid – (GABA)) in the brain is attributed to sleep disorders and anxiety.
Just like hemp-derived cannabis, which is beneficial for humans and animals, valerian root is also beneficial for dogs when administered in safe doses. To understand the full scope of how it may be beneficial for you specifically, we recommend that you do your research. Concerning your dog, we want to give you some details that we hope will equip you with enough information to incorporate it safely into your pet care routine.
Here are few things you should know about valerian root for dogs:
Great for the anxious dog: There is a reason valerian room is called nature’s valium. Similarly, it helps to ease anxiety, stress, and overall stress. Some pet owners use it for long road trips or traveling on a plane. It may also be beneficial for dogs that have separation anxiety.
Should you give your dog valerian root? Since you are here, we can assume that you are considering valerian root. As mentioned above it is great for dogs who have anxiety, particularly separation anxiety or dogs who experience anxiety during thunderstorms or loud noise.
- Some aggressive dogs’ benefit from a small dose of valerian root or if they experience anxiety when they are in large groups of people. Dealing with a dog with behavioral issues can be quite stressful not just for your pup but for you as well.
- The American Herbal Products Association documents the safety of the use of herbs and cites that valerian root is safe for people, even pregnant women.
- Although there are no studies available for the use of this herb for dogs it is considered safe. The most important thing to remember is to start slowly and monitor your dog for its reaction, both positive and negative. Keep an eye out for drowsiness and lethargy. If your dog is taking other medications, there may be an interaction with them.
Giving your dog valerian root in safe doses: Once you have decided that valerian root is a good option for your dog, administering the right doses is important. Contact your pet care provider if you are unsure or if you would like to know if there are any interactions with the medication your dog is taking. Either way, it is okay to get as much advice as possible.
- The dose will be dependent on your dog’s individual needs. If you are using it as a dried herb/dry root the dose range is 1 to 1.75 grams and in tincture form, 7 to 17 milliliters (about 0.57 oz). Consulting a trained herbalist may also be beneficial for proper dosing. Keep in mind, dosing will depend on the form of valerian root you are using, and adjustments must be made accordingly.
- Some products contain valerian root as one of the ingredients. This would be at a lower percentage than if you were solely using this herb. Further, tiny amounts of valerian root, particularly mixed with other ingredients in dog supplements should not have any adverse effects unless your dog has a sensitivity to valerian root or one of the ingredients listed in the product.