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Bimini. A new pet natural medicine in treat form. What is it and is it better that what I already give my dog.

A friend sent me a  question. What do I think of a new pet chew called Bimini for

arthritis in dogs?

I looked it up. Contains fish oil, cat’s claw and aspirin (willow bark)

1. All versions of Salicylic acid are anti-inflammatory in dogs and cats.

However, dose & frequency is much smaller and they are more prone to adverse

side effects. Salicylic acid (SA) relieves pain quicker than glucosamines(GCAs

) but no better after 1 month on GCAs. Long term SA has serious side ffects

like GI ulcers, cartilage, liver and kidney damage.

2.Cat’s Claw, from South America, and Devil’s claw, from Africa, are related

anti-inflammatory herbs with a mix of anti-inflammatory chemicals. Must be  

used carefully as there are side effects from the Cox1 and Cox2 enzymes within

each. Dog and cats are more sensitive to side effects than people or horses so

I like to use products where I know the dose as owners often use more than one

thing. This treat is like taking aspirin and Ibuprofen. The additive dose has

great pain relief and more risk for toxic side effects after a few weeks. All

effects are dose and frequency dependent.

When I use choose an herbal to replace an anti-inflammatory medicine, I choose

Noni ( made by Dr.s Best brand, dried leaves or roots)  at 5-10 mg/lb dose to

start which can be slowly increased to 3 times beginning dose. I choice Noni

because at the effective doses there are no adverse side effects. Main draw

back is that it takes about 3 months to reach full physiologic effect, but

pain relief begin after 1 week and increase for 1 month.

3. Fish oil. Based on studies with arthritic dogs, Omega 3 FA from Fish oil,

where more effective at pain and inflammation relief compared to NSAIDs,

glucosamines, alone or with MSM. Doses of 350 – 750 mg O3 FA or 1000 -2000mg

of Fish oil.

Keep in mind that Omega3 FA from Fish oil assist the synovial cells to work

better to protect the joint. Also, other studies looked at the amount &

quality of Omega 3 in fortified dog foods or treats that are kibble or semi-

soft forms. Cooking of kibbles or storage of oil soaked semi-soft damaged the

FAs, oxidizing the FAs to an inactive form. Plus, most did not have enough

Omega 3 FA in them to have beneficial effect. Best diet source of FA is

dribbled on top of food just before feeding. Even the science diet & purina

arthritis diets, with FA sprayed over kibble right before packaging did not

have significant clinical effect.

There are many many (100s) herbal anti-inflammatories used for centuries as

medicine. Studies to objectively compare these herbs to one another have not

been done yet. So whether one is the best in not known. Evaluating the many

studies of anti-inflammatory herbs, they are dosed up to effect. Taking that

into account, I find the main ones are all similar in prevention of pain and

inflammation so the main differences are side effects, how easy to use, and

price of course. In general mixtures are almost always less effective when

compared to an effective dose of a single ingredient.  These chews are likely

one ingredient, with a little of the other two ingredients and allot of flavor

filler to cover up the bad taste of either herb. Cat claw dose ~ $0.12 or

aspirin tabs $0.03 are much less expensive than these soft chews, either one

is enough. Fish oil purified concentrate is about $2/oz from a vet and dogs

love the taste. Big dogs need 1 tsp/day fish oil so that is 1/6th oz. So cats

claw + aspirin with fish oil added to food for 80 lb dog  is $0.45/day.

Compare to price of $1.30 for a daily dose of Bimini for same size dog.After

one month they recommend every other day dosing which reduces price to $.65,

still more that the total of individual ingredients.

So there you go… a long answer. However all that said, it seems that

marketing trumps effectiveness, safety and price because these types of

supplements are selling in large numbers.

perception, illusion and reality

Great talk about why we struggle to allow into our world, new information when, “we know what we know”.

Takes about 15 minutes to watch this video about how we and creatures map reality.

TED | TEDx | Event Detail.

Applies to pet owners because many problem behaviors that happen in the average home are based on the principles revealed in this TED talk. Basically, our prior learning results in ideas and remembered brain images, about a subject within our world. These image-ideas can interfere with seeing what is really happening. Our brains are constantly editing out information that is in the environment, so that we  only pay attention to what is judged important. This is a brain based shortcut for daily living. Obviously, we don’t take as long to do activities of daily life compared to when we first  learned them.  This is the result of editing out any information that is not important to the task. How does this interfere with learning as life goes on? We create a very detailed map of the world as we acquire experiences. This map is brought out of our memory as we go through our day. Visual maps, hearing maps, feeling and movement maps and even thinking and emotional maps. There is even an area of the brain dedicated to making us feel certain about our maps. Even though we know that maps are only a guide, as we gain repeated experiences we begin to feel certain that our personal map is the same as reality. This is how phobias are formed and knowing that repeating experiences creates a new map is also how phobias are treated effectively.

Hopefully by now, someone has taken a photo or video of you that  demonstrates that what you remember can be very wrong. Yet we are stuck with feelings of certainty about how we see the reality around us. Luckily neuroscience is pointing out that each persons and each species only perceives a small portion of the world.

Let me explain how this applies to animal training. First, the experience of eye sight, hearing, feeling sensations, smells and second how this information is identified by the brain is very different between us and our animal companions. Many of the difficulties, that happen within human-animal households, can be traced to these facts. We do not see, feel, smell, hear, experience the same World. Modern pet training differs from, the older, so called “Leader of the Pack” beliefs, by applying what has been learned through 200 years scientific study of how animals  really experience their world.  More importantly, modern science applies the two principles: one –  what can be measured can be improved and two – what we know today is just a map of reality so learning never ends.

It is essential to document training ideas, methods and results in ways that can be objectively measured.  Renowned Innovators and Entrepreneurs  know that accepted thinking gets in the way of discovery. They also know the importance of measuring results. So as you train your animals I suggest that we all; test ideas, document objectively, retest, retest and have someone else look over your methods and results.

Once one realizes that accepted ideas can get in the way of seeing reality this is the best we can do, for now…..

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