Echinacea plant commonly known as purple coneflowers is an herbal plant of the Asteraceae family. They are tap rooted perennial plants that can grow as high as 4 foot in height and the entire herb is highly utilized as an extremely popular alternative herbal remedies. They are commonly found in Northern America and there are several different species of the Echinacea plant. Different chemical effects are observed based on the different species of the plant used as well as the different parts of this famous herbal plant. Apart from its applications in human medicine as an immune supporting herb, uses of Echinacea Extract in animals also exist.
Extensive research has not been studied about Echinacea as far as veterinary medicine is concerned but a certain study done on horses, indicated that Echinacea extract is able to treat blood related ailments by increasing the red blood cells and hemoglobin counts. This effect of the Echinacea on the red blood cell was speculated to increase athletic looks on horses. Another study has been done on dogs and it has shown that Echinacea extract can be used to treat chronic respiratory infections. Following a given prescribed dosage, it was established that the resolution of the symptoms could be seen by the 4th week. This indication showed that in fact this herbal plant can be used in treating animals.
Echinacea has also been used in veterinary medicine as a topical salve along with other herbs for the treatment of wound inflammation and infection in animals. It has been established that, it substantially stimulates wound healing and in reducing itching as a result of demodex mite infection. Demodex mite is an ectoparasite that resides on the hair of its host.
There are different pharmaceutical preparations of this herb, dried herb which is usually the pure herb in its dried and chopped form, liquid processed form and last but not least, the herbs in a tablet form. Among the different Echinacea preparations, liquid preparation is usually considered the best. It is very important that, before you purchase this medicinal herb for your pets, you should read the label so as to know how to use it properly.
Echinacea extract can also be used as supplements in animal feeds. In poultry and swine husbandry, the herb extract can be used as an additive to drinking water. For herbivores such as cattle, horses and goats, the flowering plant can be fed directly to them or the dried root of Echinacea can be added to their feed. This is because these kinds of animals are designed to effectively metabolize plant materials and hence the herb material introduced to its feed will be ingested. Dosage of the herb varies depending on the animal to be treated.