Clara: Injury & Depression

Caroline Ingraham Animal Chronicles

A Boxer-Cross With Depression

Clara The BoxerClara, a 2-year-old boxer cross, was found in a ditch after having been purposefully run over, dragged along the road and shot twice in the chest with an air rifle. She had been laying there for a couple of days barely alive, with bones on her legs exposed, but not broken. Clara was taken to Wood Green Animal Shelter where she spent six months convalescing from her injuries.

Clara was adorable but she was clearly depressed. She showed little interest in her food, didn't want to get out of bed, and had her tail permanently tucked between her legs. Clara selected remedies for repair, depression, pain and loss. I began by offering Clara rosehip shells, barley grass and spirulina, but it was the rosehip shells that she wanted. She tucked into them with relish, more than I had ever seen with any other dog. She took one kilogram all in one go, showing no interest in spirulina or barley grass. The high vitamin C content in rosehip shells helps to support enzymes needed for the body produce collagen; this made sense since the collagen in her legs had been severely damaged.

I assumed Clara would need yarrow on her scars since most dogs with past or present injuries usually select it. She sniffed the yarrow, so I approached her leg to apply some, but she pulled it away. I wondered if she might have been anticipating pain since she had had so much work done on her leg, so offered violet leaf then I re-offered yarrow and put a drop onto one of her many scars, but it didn't absorb; meaning it wasn't needed topically.

During the morning session, Clara also inhaled neroli (loss and separation), licked a couple of drops of undiluted birch (pain) and took 30 ml of St John’s wort (pain and depression), she then took a further 40 ml of St. John’s wort in the afternoon. At the end of the day, she cuddled into me and licked my cheek, as if to say thank you. She became playful, interacting with everyone, happily wagging her tail. She was a different dog than when she left the classroom

Clara usually sleeps in the same room as one of the girls who worked at the shelter, in a house shared with another member of staff who had been attending the training. That evening instead of Clara going to the girl who she slept with, she chose to jump on the bed and sleep with the member of staff who had been at the course! Her appetite returned and she no longer displayed depressive behaviours. Shortly afterwards Clara was successfully re-homed.


Yarrow for wound healing was not needed, however, collagen repair to areas under her skin that had been severely damaged was required.

Caroline Ingraham