Bloody staggering

We all have our own routines that make us feel good before heading out to meet the ladies, don’t we? Maybe it’s a lucky shirt, a favorite cologne, one last practise of a killer dance move, or even a strategically placed sports sock.

It’s now being reported that Vladimir Putin is no different

Actually that’s not true, he’s very different, but not in so far as he also has his own particular way of getting in the zone. Saturday Night Fever it ain’t.

Sources close to the man himself claim that Vlad the lad is a fan of an ancient practice of bathing in deer antler blood. The belief is it naturally stimulates testosterone and is particularly good for libido and sexual performance.

What’s all that about then?

He’s thought to have become interested in Maral – red deer antler – extract about ten years ago along with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who is also keen on bubble bathing in Bambi.

Rumour has it Putin, who is in his 60s now, visits farms in the Altai Mountains several times a year for baths to keep himself virile.  Word is that ahead of one trip, as much as 70 kilos of blood were prepared for the President’s arrival.

Sounds a hell of a pool party. Literally.

Remedies like this have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries, but there are also examples from around Europe and elsewhere. King James I of England for example, regularly bathed in animal blood.

Still, you really have to go back a ways for ideas like this to be common. To most of it looks bizarre and outdated.

In fairness to Putin, lots of us still rely on old fashioned tactics which make us feel sexy. Even if they seem faintly ridiculous to others. Usually we’re talking leather trousers or shoulder pads though.

However deer farms which offer this kind of treatment are legal – and apparently popular – in Russia today. One Altai farm wasn’t shy about pitching the benefits of the supposed tonic on men’s potency.

“It strengthens the body’s bones, muscles, teeth, eye sight and hearing, cures pleurisy, pneumonia, asthma, joint pain, osteoporosis, and problems with the spine.”

Oh and don’t worry if you’d like to get in on all of that, but the idea of bathing in deer antler blood seems slightly creepy and mental to you. There’s also the option to drink it.

It has to be said not everyone is so enthusiastic. Animal rights campaigners have branded the technique barbaric. This is because believers in this practice don’t tend to wait around until the deer are done with their antlers.

Often times they will be sawn off while the animal is still alive without anaesthetic.

Does it actually work?

Obvious ethical questions aside for a minute, that’s what we all want to know.

Well the truth is, we can’t say for sure, because to (almost) quote Meatloaf, we would do anything for a natural T boosting remedy, but we won’t do that.

There has been some clinical work done on the kind of deer antler extract which sometimes pops up in the natural T boosters we review. This isn’t blood, it’s literally powdered antler, but we reckon it’s close enough to be worth taking a look at.

Let’s check libido first. A double-blind, placebo-controlled study from New Zealand in 2003 found that 1g of deer antler given to men daily over a period of months had no positive influence on sex drive.

Ah. Okay, what about some other manly traits. More gym than bedroom based stuff?

Similarly a study by the University of New Brunswick in Canada found that 1.5g of antler extract given to athletes, failed to improve T levels, power output or endurance.

Hmm. Far be it from us to disagree with a man who has a nuclear weapon at his disposal, but the case for deer dips doesn’t look too strong scientifically.


Natural ways to boost your libido are a great idea. But as far as we can see there are far more successful options out there that are less of a logistical headache for you and a literal headache for the deer.

In our opinion, the only thing you should be cracking the top off to help your body in the bath is a decent muscle soak. Or a beer.

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