So I came home and decided to try my hand at treating it with herbs. I make a blend of Comfrey Root, Echinacea Root, Plantain Leaf and Goldenseal Root. I then warmed it, dipped some cheesecloth in it and managed to get him to hold still for a couple of minutes. I did this once a day for about 4 days and it went down but not away.
Then I went to an aromatherapy conference where an herbalist was one of the vendors. He suggested Castor Oil with 2 parts Plantain and one part Witch Hazel Bark. I got back to discover that the boil had grown again so I thought it was a perfect time to try this new blend. I tried it for about 3 days but was a little concerned that the oil was only further plugging up the pores.
Then I got a suggestion from another herbalist that I shouldn't use oil; I should use Plantain as a poultice - or perhaps a combination of Marshmallow and Slippery Elm. She said he also needed to be treated internally as a boil arises from some sort of internal infection.
In the meantime, I had a chance to speak to my vet who is holistically-minded but doesn't usually treat with herbs. He said boils do not arise from an internal infection and I should try Turmeric as a warm compress but that heat was key.
So I put some Turmeric in water, heated it up and applied it. Darned if it didn't work. Well, actually, I don't know that. The boil was definitely open and raw when I got home from work the next day but could easily have been because he scratched it open.
Okay now what? The boil is open but it's red, raw and oozing blood. I'm afraid the vet would cost a small fortune (which I don't have until next paycheck) and that they'd want to try to put him in a collar. We had to try that once before and he became violent, throwing himselt around and slamming into walls and furniture. Not a good thing to watch.
So today I turned to something soothing - Chamomile and just applied a warm compress. I also have a tube of A&D ointment and although it's not herbal, I"m desperate to see some improvement before I can afford to take him to the vet.
My dilemma is that I can't tell if this is a case of "it gets worse just before it gets better" or if it's just worse! It scares me and also makes me lose confidence in my abilities to help herbally.