St John’s Wort for Animals
Answered by: Kerry Hackett
Question from: Larah
Posted on: February 27, 2007

Is St. John’s wort of similar medicinal value in animals as people for seasonal depression? If so how would the dosage be measured?

St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum) can be used in animals as a vulnerary (wound healing), antidepressant, immunostimulant, antiviral, antiseptic and to help with nerve transmission, although unfortunately it has become famous for its antidepressive abilities only. Using this herb in glycerite form, a usual recommended dose would be six drops for every ten pounds of the animal’s body weight, twice a day in food. Standard cautions include the possibility of photosensitivity, so it is best to watch the dose, especially with light coloured animals who may spend their time out in the sun. Therefore, it is always best to consult a qualified practitioner who has experience with both animals and herbs about your specific animal before embarking on any course of treatment.

Do you know of any courses in England or America during August for medical herbalists? I am also a full time teacher.

As far veterinary courses for herbalists go, I know of none in the UK for non-veterinarians. You could check the website of the Veterinary Botanical Medicine Association ( for possibilities in America. I also should mention that the title "Medical Herbalist" imples that you are a member of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists (NIMH) in the UK. Incorporated in 1864, they require a rigorous period of training and examination before admission, given they are considered to be the oldest and most highly respected professional herbal association in the world. As I did not see your name in the NIMH register, you should not be using the title "Medical Herbalist" unless you are a new member and not currently listed in the existing register.

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