So, the first we had heard of Diatomaceous Earth was from an adopter of ours several years ago, (BTK9T actually was birthed out of our many years experience in Rottweiler Rescue). Julie adopted Soldier, a young male Rottie and as always, we vet all potential adopters and one of the requirements is for adopters’ current dogs to be on heart worm and flea and tick preventive. Julie told us she always used DE powder as her main means for flea and tick control. Sprinkling it in her yard and in the dogs bedding area, even sprinkling it on her dogs’ food to help naturally control internal parasites/worms.
Preferring anything all natural over chemicals, I was intrigued! Upon researching it, we found out that Diatomaceous Earth has long been used by farmers to control parasite and insect control for feed storage for their cattle and livestock and for treating internal parasites in livestock as well.
Diatomaceous Earth is a very fine powder composed of fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton (one celled plants). DE kept dry, never expires! It is primarily made of a mineral called Silica. If you were to look at it under a microscope, you would see it has very sharp edges. When sprinkled on a bug, DE actually breaks apart their exoskeleton physically killing them rather than chemically killing them, so there is no fear of harmful chemical side affects to you or your dog. Another benefit is that parasites cannot develop a resistance to DE, unlike chemical flea and tick meds.
We have successfully used DE to prevent and control ticks for many years now. We use a seed spreader and dust our whole yard and perimeter each Spring and usually once again mid Summer. Living in a rural neighborhood with land backing up to woods and a nature preserve, we used to see a lot of ticks, not so anymore. DE should be spread when the earth and grass/leaves are dry as getting it wet detracts from its effectiveness.
Diatomaceous Earth is reported to have many internal health benefits to both pets and humans alike, from internal parasite control to helping ease joint and arthritic pain, lowering cholesterol, as well as being a natural detoxifier.
If you are interested in trying out DE, make sure you buy FOOD GRADE Diatomaceous Earth, since there is another form that can be used in swimming pool filter systems which is not safe for use with animals or humans because it has harmful chemicals added to it!
Most feed stores such as Tractor Supply and Southern States carry FOOD GRADE DE in stock, but we recommend doing some online research as you can get some great deals on bulk purchases. It’s also interesting to learn more details about the many health benefits and dosage amounts should you decide to use it internally. Some websites even sell spreaders or sprayers designed to give you the most effective coverage for your yard type.
If you already use Diatomaceous Earth and have a success story, please email us with your suggestions! We will be sure to include it for others to read.
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