Natural Secrets of Aloe Vera for your Animals

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Facts about Aloe Vera

Did you know that Aloe Vera is a plant that belongs to the lily family? So means it’s related to garlic, onion and asparagus. There are over 200 types of Aloe Vera. But of these only 4 or 5 are commonly used. The most widely used variety is Aloe Vera Barbadensis Miller, this is because it is easy to cultivate and has some of the most potent medicinal properties.

This means it’s natural! And has been used in complementary and alternative medicine for a long time (centuries!). ¹

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Why Aloe Vera is Full of Nutrients For Your Animal’s Health

Aloe Vera comprises dozens of nutrients helpful for a healthy body. These can be divided into:

  • Amino Acids – Including essential amino acids.
  • Anthraquinones – Is found in small quantities and those present have a variety of uses.
  • Enzymes – Several enzymes can be found within Aloe Vera
  • Fatty acids – Have several properties.
  • Lignin – Inclusion in topical preparations assists the Aloe Vera to have a penetrative effect into the skin.
  • Minerals – Including – calcium, manganese, zinc, copper, chromium, sodium, magnesium, potassium and iron.
  • Salycilic acid – Naturally occurring substance with a variety of uses.
  • Saponins – Cleansing effect with antiseptic properties.
  • Vitamins – Aloe Vera contains several natural vitamins, including vitamins’ B1, B2, B6, B12, A, C and E.

Aloe Vera is also thought to have synergistic properties. This means its nutrients work together. So to have a more powerful effect than they would ordinarily on an individual basis. ¹

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Health Benefits of Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is a plant that can be used alone or in combination with other substances of natural or synthetic origin. There is a synergistic effect with also veterinary drugs (Grazyna et al. 2005).

Anti-Microbial Effect

Despite the existence of potent antibiotic and anti-fungal agents, resistant or multi-resistant strains are continuously appearing, imposing the need for a permanent search and development of new drugs. Plants are the cheapest safer and time-tested alternative sources of antimicrobial. In ancient times, people believed that plants had curative powers. Phytotherapy or phytomedicine has been a part of both Eastern and Western medical traditions since 2000 BC Shireen et al. [2].

Aloe vera has potent antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties Ramasubramanian et al. [3].

The antimicrobial effects of Aloe vera have been attributed to the plant’s natural anthraquinones which have demonstrated in vitro inhibition of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Bacillus subtilis. Aloe juice has been found to be bacteriostatic against Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumonia, Streptococcus pyogens, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella paratyphi and E. choli Agarry et al. [4].

No sufficient information on mechanism of action of Aloe vera extract on microbes.

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Anti-Bacterial Effect

Antibiotics are probably the most successful family of drugs so far developed for improving animal and human health. Because of increasing resistance to antibiotics of many bacteria, plant extracts are of new interest as antiseptics and antimicrobial agents in medicine Yisehak et al. [5].

The Aloe extract was potent against various species of bacteria including S. aureus, S. agalctia, E. choli, Streptococcus pyogens, M. bacterium tuberculosis, Pseudomonas aerogenosa, Klebsiella pneumonia, etc. Whole leaf components of Aloe vera are proposed to have direct antibacterial properties include anthraquinones and saponins Rubina et al. [6].

While polysaccharides have been attributed within direct bacterial activity the stimulation of phagocytic leucocytes to destroy bacteria Lawless, et al. [7].

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Anti-Fungal Effect

The importance of skin affection in domestic animals draw the attention of many workers to suggest various methods of their control such as application of suitable and rapid method for their diagnosis and treatment. Bovine dermatophytosis causes economic loss due to hide damage and restrictions in showing and marketing infected cattle Hany et al. [8].

Ringworm infection is caused by invasion of cutanous keratinized epithelial cells and hair follicle by a certain keratinophilic fungi causes dermatomphytosis Hany et al. [9].

Trichphyton verrucosum, Trichphyton mentagrophytes and Trichphyton megnini are the most commonly fungal species that involved in ringworm Quinn et al. [10].

Aloe gel is used topically for infections that are caused by these fungal agents. This therapeutically benefit of Aloe vera gel leaves might be due to its properties and chemical components. Also the potency of A. vera in curing ringworm might be due to increasing the ability of internal immunity that strength the natural resistance by boosting T- lymphocyte cells that aid the immune system Hany et al. [11].

 

Aloe vera can also be ingested. While some pet owners will scoop a teaspoon of the gel (taking care to not include the yellow saponin-containing latex) and mix it with about a quarter of a gallon of distilled water, others choose to dilute liquid aloe in beef broth, adding it to their dog’s food. Again, buying a liquid that has the saponins removed is a safe way to ensure that your best buddy is only getting the beneficial part of the aloe plant, and not ingesting something that will upset their stomach and cause vomiting or diarrhea.

 

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REFERENCES:

  1. https://www.taranet.co.uk/AnimalCareDirectory/Aloe%20Vera%20for%20Animals/
  2. Shireen F, Manipal S, Prabu D (2015) Anti-fungal activity of Aloe vera: In vitro study. SRM Journal of Research in Dental Science 6: 92-95.
  3. Ramasubramanian TS, Sivakumar VT, Thirumalai AV (2010) Antimicrobial activity of Aloe vera (L.) Burm. F. against pathogenic microorganisms. Journal of Bioscience Research 4: 251-258.
  4. Agarry O, Olaley T, Bello C (2005) Comparative Antimicrobial Activities of Aloe vera Gel and Leaf. African Journal of Biotechnology 4(12): 1413- 1414.
  5. Yisehak Tsegaye, Eyosyas Kebede, Cruz Cruz, Getachew Gugsa (2014) Potential Antibacterial Activity of Crude Extracts from Aloe vera, Zingiber officinale and Vinca major Medicinal Plants. International Journal of Microbiological Research 5(3): 202-207.
  6. Sonia pareek, Anup Nagaraj, Pratic Sharma, Shravani Naidu, Asif Yousuf (2013) Disinfection of Dental Unit Water Line Using Aloe Vera: In Vitro Study. Int J Dent pp. 618962.
  7. Vogler BK, Ernst E (1999) Aloe vera: a systematic review of its clinical effectiveness. Br J Gen Pract 49(447): 823-828.
  8. J Beaman, R Taylor (2015) Journal of Medicine and Food 18: 1042-1048.
  9. Hany Y Hassan, Magdy El-Sayed, Magda Ali Salah, Ahmed Zaghawa Magdy A, Aly (2004) Efficacy Of Aloe Vera Gel Leaves For Treatment Of Skin Affection Amonge Animals 1rst Ann. Confr., FVM, Moshtohor.
  10. Quinn PJ, Carter ME, Markey BK, Carter GR (1994) Clinical Veterinary Microbiology (1st edn).
  11. Hany Y Hassan, Magdy El-Sayed, Magda Ali Salah, Ahmed Zaghawa Magdy A, Aly (2004) Efficacy Of Aloe Vera Gel Leaves For Treatment Of Skin Affection Amonge Animals 1rst Ann. Confr., FVM, Moshtohor.