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For a few months now I've been working with my vet to help my lad's (cat) heart condition. He's on a couple of tablets that have helped with his blood pressure and heart rate but we were still left with a bit of a wheeze which we discussed was most likely fluid in the lungs and would probably need a diuretic. My vet wanted to avoid conventional diuretics if we could because they are a bit hard on the kidneys, leech the body of potassium and he was concerned we'd end up with low blood pressure instead of having it just right. I used to drink dandelion leaf tea and mentioned its diuretic effects on me so we decided to try dandelion leaf powder with my boy. Let's face it he wasn't going to drink the tea was he?
The dandelion leaf powder I found was this Bio Health one in capsule form. For about £5 I got 60 300mg capsules so my lad would need about a tenth of the capsule 3 times a day as the human dose was one capsule thrice daily (it actually says thrice on the bottle too!). The only other thing of note on the bottle is not to take these during pregnancy. The capsules are filled with green powder that smells and tastes alot like the wheatgrass powder I used to drink. I wasn't sure how my boy would fare with taking some of the powder but it definitely needed trying.
I opened the capsules and tipped a tiny pinch out for him before mixing it in with some multi vitamin paste. The good thing about dandelion leaf is how high in potassium it is, it doesn't take potassium from the body and also has vitamins A and C in it along with countless amino acids and minerals so it's a much healthier option than orthodox diuretics. Once I'd got the paste mixed up it had taken on a sludgy green look and I couldn't smell the dandelion but I wasn't sure about my lad's much keener sense of smell. I needn't have worried because he loved it, mixed in with his paste it seemed to be really tasty for him!
As it's a milder diuretic than conventional pills we'd decided to give it a full week before we discussed its effects and took my lad in to be checked up. I kind of expected it to make my lad pee a bit more often right from the word go because that's the effect the tea had on me. It didn't do this so I hoped it was pushing a bit more fluid out during each pee instead. After a week and no improvement to his breathing I had to conclude it wasn't doing much and decided to try it for a few days myself to see what it did to me. I can confirm it didn't make me pee anymore or more often either and I was totally disappointed with it. Sadly it doesn't work as a diuretic should in powdered form, I have no clue why this is, unless something is lost in the processing that is there in the tea but it didn't do what I wanted it to anyway. My boy has had to go onto orthodox tablet diuretics which so far (touch wood) haven't had any negative effects.
Overall it was a complete disappointment, as I said above I can only surmise something essential is lost when the dried leaf is turned to powder as the dried leaf in tea form does have a very quick diuretic effect. I'm only giving these the one star and it's such a shame they didn't work as they were such a hit tastewise. Very disappointing.