HEALTH AND WELLNESS
It's never too late to paws and breathe.
DEMAND for herbal solutions for dogs and cats skin problems is growing and the most sought-after are those with Madre De Cacao extract.
More popularly known in the Philippines as “kakawate”, this leafy legume tree is valued for its wide healing properties. Extracts from its leaves, roots and barks are now finding their way in bottles of pet shampoos and conditioners as well as in bars of soap.
A quick look at what the market has to offer revealed at least six brands of Madre de Cacao infused pet products.
The Papi herbal soap is made for dogs and cats with skin problems and could use some scrubbing of pure Madre De Cacao soap. A box costs more or less P80.
The Miah dog soap and shampoo ticks (no pun intended) all the boxes when it comes to fighting off pesky ticks and fleas and providing remedy for mange, dandruff, scars, redness, itchy skin, falling hair, bad odor and dog's other stubborn skin problems. The 500ml bottle costs about P150, though some stores sell it for a bit more.
Banjo'S Wonder Herbal Soap claims to be an all-natural soap made from herbal extracts that are known to treat various skin diseases like demodectic and sarcoptic mange as well as fungal infection. Aside from Madre De Cacao, Banjo's also contains extracts from guava leaves, akapulko and makabuhay.
The makers of Lori makes several variant of their soaps and they have one that contains pure Madre De Cacao. They also added milk and herbs to the mix to condition the dog's coat. The Lori with Madre De Cacao is also made specially for smaller, toy breed dogs.
The newest bath and skin care product in the pet market, Miao Solution comes in three variants -- Wonder Sud, Shampoo to the Rescue and Skin Magic. All products credit their efficacy to the medicinal elements found in Kakawate.
MYSTERIOUS MADRE CACAO
The Mysterious Madre Cacao (MMC) line of pet products includes not just shampoo and conditioner and soap, they also have cologne. They are supposed to be suitable for both cats and dogs and they are also the most widely available brand we saw in the market.
But if you really want to go traditional, you could opt to get fresh kakawate leaves and boil them and use the water as a topical bath solution.
The Bureau of Agricultural Research said that aside from its anti-bacterial properties, the Kakawate (Gliricidia sepium) is also an effective mosquito repellant. Farmers grind the Kakawate leaves and apply them where mosquitoes alight. The Kakawate is not edible. It is actually quite poisonous and, for this reason, it is often used as rat bait.
* First aid treatment for toad poisoning in dogs