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Natural Canine Health Symposium

Bentonite Clay Detox

large dogBentonite is a negatively charged, highly absorbent clay. Native American tribes call bentonite ‘Ea-Wah-Kee’ which means “the mud that heals”.

There are different types of bentonite clay, depending on the dominant mineral within it (sodium, calcium, potassium, etc.). Mainly comprised of aged volcanic ash, it’s healing qualities and ability to draw out toxins are known throughout the world.


Bentonite clay can be used for:

  • Digestive disturbances like constipation, bloating, gas
  • Skin and allergy issues
  • Recovery from vomiting and diarrhea

Bentonite clay can be applied either orally to draw toxins from the body or externally as a poultice – it’s healing qualities abound. Bentonite clay’s effectiveness is derived from its negative ionic charge, which pulls positively charged particles from the body via the bloodstream and then eliminates them through the kidneys and bowels. Not absorbed itself, the the clay just gets passed along with the bound toxins.

Topical Applications

There are several ways to give clay externally to your pets.

  • You can mix it with water in a glass container. Don’t allow the clay to touch metal or you’ll risk reducing it’s effectiveness. Apply it as a paste to itchy skin, bug bites or other skin maladies. Allow the clay to fully dry and then wash it off.
  • If a poultice is required for a more potent application, apply the paste to the area and wrap it carefully with wet gauze or cloth. Be very careful to monitor the wrap so it doesn’t shift or ‘cord’ around the area and tighten. Dampen and rewrap every two hours until the desired treatment has been achieved.
  • Add a 1/4 cup of Bentonite clay to a bath for a general detoxification.
  • For treating mastitis, apply a paste or mask to the affected area to help draw out the toxins in the body. Repeat hourly.

Internal Uses

Several reports state that canines have evolved to eat clay to counteract environmental and synthetic toxins, and to aid in recovering from sickness.

  • Add some bentonite clay to your pets water or give it orally with a dropper when he develops vomiting, diarrhea or other illness.
  • Calcium bentonite clay is effective for treating internal parasites.
  • Bentonite clay works great for detoxification of the liver and kidneys, which are prone to becoming overloaded.

How Much To Give

The beneficial qualities of bentonite clay can be achieved with 1/4 to 1/2 of a teaspoon daily mixed with your pet’s water or on his food. Due to bentonite clay’s absorbent qualities, fresh water must always be available to your dog during.


Clay shouldn’t be given orally in the following cases:

Constipation or impaction
High fat diets
During pregnancy and nursing
During a course of medication

Due to it’s absorbent qualities and negative charge, bentonite clay may affect the impact or efficacy of other treatments.


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  • 12 Responses to Bentonite Clay Detox

    1. Catherine

      Quick question it says not to give with high fat diets. My dog gets raw rabbit. This last batch was older rabbits and more fatty. I am just wondering why it is not good to give the clay with a fatty diet and if this would be considered a fatty diet- with the fattier rabbit.

      Thank you!

    2. I have occasional anal infections on one of my older dogs, I apply calcium bentonite/DE , which I bought from the local feed store. I apply it on the infected gland, and around his tail and cover it up. It works so quick, that the next day the infection is dried out, and healing. Wonderful product.
      p.s. I love your frequent DNM newsletters.

    3. Bentonite clay can also be mixed with water, left to settle out for a period of time in the fridge, and the water consumed without the clay. I always drink the whole mixture, but I’ve read that it is just as effective to drink the water by itself.

    4. Debbie

      We recently used it on an infection in our lab’s paw, because his paw was so moist and there was pus we put it on dry and in two days it was healed.

    5. Kimberley

      Gee wish I read this a few days ago. I have a dog that has been suffering from vomiting and diahhrea for the past few days. Guess I’ll check the local health food store for this product!

    6. Kathie

      Where do you get it?

    7. I always use montmorillonite clay at the first signs of diarrhea, it works very well! Withold food for 12 to 24 hours and give 2 capsules for a 30kg dog 3 x a day. If no more bowel movements than feed rice and pumpkin the following day and wait for a bowel movement, if firm than you can go back to normal feeding. In this regime I also tend to use slippery elm powder.

    8. I use benonite clay myself, and love it. I’m so glad to know this can be shared with my dogs for various ailments- thanks for the tips!

    9. Stacy Doyle

      Excellent article, but what about montmorillonite clay? Seems to be an ingredient in many natural dog foods and supplements. Any thoughts?

    10. I have used Bentonite clay personally, but never have thought about using it on a dog. I also did not know it could be used externally. Great things to keep in mind for the future…

    11. Gail

      Great info. This might explain why my one dog occasionally eats dirt. I notice he does this when he is also eating a lot of grass. Thanks for the info.

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