Couch grass is a plant that grows almost everywhere and it’s very difficult to get rid of – which is lucky for both our health and the health of our pets! Also called Dog grass, this is the plant that our pets intuitively eat when they are feeling sick, and there is a lot of wisdom in this behaviour as Couch grass offers excellent benefits:
Urinary tract and kidney health
Couchgrass serves as an excellent tonic and disinfectant for the urinary tract. It is a soothing, anti-inflammatory diuretic with mild antimicrobial activity, and is considered a specific remedy for chronic or acute cases of cystitis and urethritis, where the root tea or extract will help reduce inflammation, inhibit bacterial reproduction, and lessen pain during urination.
It should be noted that although couchgrass has been shown to possess broad antibiotic activity1, it may be too weak to be effective against infections which are already well-established. In such cases, it should be combined with stronger antimicrobial herbs— such as Echinacea, Thyme, Bearberry or Corn silk.
The demulcent properties soothe inflammation and are helpful for kidney stones and gravel. Because it is very gentle on the kidneys, it seldom irritates the bladder or urethra during long term use.
The second most famous use of Couch grass is as a remedy for the upper respiratory tract and infections. Used as a tea or extract, it is beneficial for clearing out the airways and helping you recover from colds, coughs, and as a cough medicine to alleviate bronchial irritation and pain.
Couch grass is a good cleansing herb because it has the ability to remove toxins from the blood and also from the liver.
As a diuretic, couchgrass increases the volume of urine by stimulating sodium excretion, helping to wash away toxic materials from the body via the kidneys. This makes couchgrass an effective liver-supporting herb, similar to Dandelion or Burdock. These three plants are good to combine, especially in the treatment of rheumatism or chronic skin problems and to generally clean the liver and help it function and clean your body properly.
The tea made from Couch grass can be used as a wash for swollen limbs or chronic skin problems like eczema, ulcers, psoriasis or acne. When used externally it cleans your skin and drank as a tea it cleans your liver which in turn helps your skin be clean, healthy and radiant!
Pets – Cats and dogs
Cats and dogs intuitively find and eat this plant when they feel they need it. It is usually either because they are trying to clean out their digestive system or because they need the nutrients and healing benefits it possesses.
Couch grass is an excellent herb for your pets, it is both a safe and potent remedy for any urinary problems. It is a primary herb to consider when treating the symptoms of Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (or Feline urinary Syndrome – FUS) in cats.
For use in urinary problems and as a digestive aid, the best way to administer this herb is in the form of a cooled tea. Make the tea by gently simmering a heaping teaspoon of the root in a cup of water for about twenty minutes. The tea can be squirted directly into the mouth of the animal or given instead of water.
A safe starting dose is 2-3 ml (about 1/2 tsp.) per 20 lbs. of the animal’s body weight, twice to three times daily. extracts can be used at half the above dosage, and are best if diluted into water. Keep in mind that this is a very subtle herbal medicine— the needs and systemic requirements of the animal you are helping may require several increases in dosage over several days, or weeks of administration.
For stones or any other cause of urinary tract inflammation, Marshmallow, Corn silk, and Plantain are valuable helpers. If blood is present in the urine— see your holistic veterinarian— your pet needs stronger measures than couchgrass.