Holistic veterinarian offers natural aids amid leptspirosis outbreak

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The leptospirosis bacteria is very contagious, and causes vomiting, shaking and lethargy, among other symptoms. It can also spread to humans.

Original story: More than 40 Valley dogs diagnosed with rare leptospirosis bacteria

Since September, 50 dogs have come down with leptospirosis in Maricopa County and three have died.

Related story: More dogs sick with leptospirosis in Maricopa County

Some veterinarians have the vaccine to prevent it, but holistic veterinarian Dr. Jodie Gruenstern said there are additional things you can do.

"Not all animals need to be vaccinated, I believe you should take into consideration the lifestyle of the individual and what risk they're at," said Dr. Gruenstern. 

Animal experts tell us one factor is whether your pet frequents dog parks or daycares.

Dr. Gruenstern also aid, a healthy immune system starts in the gut with probiotics.

"Sauerkraut, the old fashioned way, eating a good healthy one, not the one in the can, but the kind you buy in the cold area," Dr. Gruenstern said. She said you can give your pet a teaspoon of sauerkraut, or a tablespoon if they're a bigger dog.  

Did you ever think you could give your pet kombucha? Dr. Gruenstern said you can.

"A lot of people drink it, but the animals can have it, too, so just like the sauerkraut, you can put a tiny bit in with their food," she said. 

And relaxing baths aren't just for you, either.

"We can soak dogs and cats in a soak and add essential oils and a soap to it and that's going to help with the detox," Dr. Gruenstern said. 

Dr. Gruenstern and other veterinarians we talked to said you should always consult your vet before any kind of treatment.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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Lindsey ReiserLindsey Reiser is a Scottsdale native and an award-winning multimedia journalist.

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Lindsey Reiser

Lindsey returned to the Valley in 2010 after covering border and immigration issues in El Paso, TX. While in El Paso she investigated public corruption, uncovered poor business practices, and routinely reported on the violence across the border.

Lindsey feels honored to have several awards under her belt, including a Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award, Hearst Journalist Award, and several National Broadcast Education Association Awards.

Lindsey is a graduate of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, and she currently serves as a mentor to journalism students. She studied for a semester in Alicante, Spain and also earned a degree in Spanish at ASU.

She is proud to serve as a member of United Blood Services’ Community Leadership Council, a volunteer advisory board for the UBS of Arizona.

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