BRIEF DESCRIPTIONS, DEFINITIONS AND
HOLISTIC AND ALLOPATHIC MEDICINE
Western medicine is called conventional or
allopathic medicine, which means symptom suppressing.
Treatment works fast, suppresses symptoms, and relieves
pain by using drugs, and surgery. However the underlying
causes of the illnesses are not addressed and
medications need to be constantly taken or symptoms
recur and often become chronic problems.
The Holistic veterinarianís philosophy, is to look at
all aspects of the animal and by using a variety of
natural therapies, help the animal heal itself. Holistic
care concentrates on the lifestyle of the animal,
nutrition and diet, the environment, and the
psychological state, focusing on the cause of the
problem. Alternative therapies refer to treatments used
in place of Western medicine and complementary refer to
holistic and alternative treatments are used in
combination with conventional care.
Alternative and Holistic therapies may include,
Chiropractic care, Herbal medicine, Homeopathy,
Nutritional therapies, Massage, T-Touch, Bach Flower
Essence, Acu-pressure, Theraputic Massage, Acupuncture,
and even Traditional Chinese Medicine. We offer this
information for educational purposes only. Finding an
Allopathic Veterinarian that is open to Alternative
Therapies is very important for you, and more
importantly, for your pet. There will be emergencies or
times in the life of your pet that will require western
medicine, and other times when a combination of
therapies are best used, or where holistic care will be
in the best interest of your pets health. We encourage
you to open the door to learning more about these
alternative therapies, that will enhance the care and
life of your own precious pets, but may also be of great
help in caring for clientís pets within your pet sitting
business. You may want to discuss any of these
alternative therapies with your petís healthcare
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Adequate and balanced nutrition is necessary for all
life's well-being. Inadequate nutrition produces many
disease conditions and can shorten life expectancy.
Before 1960 most people fed their pets leftovers from
meals they consumed, and before that the animals in the
wild killed and ate their prey. Wendy Volhard and Kerry
Brown, DVM states, ďThink of the body as a house. If you
build a strong foundation (pregnant motherís diet), the
walls of the first story provide the support for the
upper stories (puppyhood and adulthood). A roof that is
made of the right materials and placed at the correct
angles will be a protective covering over the whole
house that will withstand even the most violent weather
(immune system). Your house will outlast those around
you that are built of less solid materials.Ē
Imagine this... giving your pet REAL food. Whole
foods fed without chemical preservatives are the
foundation of a good diet and promote health and
well-being for your pet. While commercial pet food is
convenient it may not be the healthiest way to feed your
pet and may cause disease.
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A HOLISTIC VETERINARIAN'S SCALE OF NUTRITIONAL
ADEQUACY IN PET FOOD
The following guidelines are based on a scale of 1 (the
poorest) to 10 (the best) to help you determine a better
diet for your pet:
1. All meat. Animals in the wild don't eat just
2. Soft-moist food. These diets are high in
sugar, chemicals, dyes, propylene glycol, and other
additives to give them shelf life, softness, and an
3 and 4. Soft-moist and dry combinations-"generic
brands." The cheap generic and store brands have been
incriminated in veterinary literature for their poor
quality. They are infamous for mineral deficiencies,
5 and 6. Standard commercial diets - the "name"
brands. They are adequate in most cases for most normal,
healthy, young to middle-aged animals, but they are not
optimum. They are merely adequate. They are made to be
competitive and are usually loaded with chemicals. An
average thirty-pound dog eating this food regularly will
consume nine pounds of chemicals a year!
7 and 8. Top shelf lines. These products,
including Science Diet and Iams, feature higher-quality
ingredients but still have artificial preservatives and
other chemical additives.
9. The so-called natural lines. This category
includes Precise, Natural Life, and Verus, products made
with the finest-quality ingredients. They use vitamin C
and vitamin E as natural preservatives instead of using
artificial preservatives, and the added minerals are
cheltated with amino acids fro better absorption.
10. Homemade. The very best food you can feed
your animal is the homemade diet made with fresh foods.
You can't do better for your animal.
It is advised never to feed a diet below level five. It
is recommended that you feed either a homemade diet or a
level nine food with supplementation, to make sure you
are giving optimum nutrition to your pet.
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Herbal and natural remedies have been used successfully
throughout the centuries to treat many things from worms
and fleas, skin problems and mange, kidney and bladder
problems, wounds and fractures, diarrhea and
constipation, heart disorders, and jaundice to name a
few. They are also used to prevent many health problems.
The strength of herbs lies in the unique and complex
properties of the original natural substance. They
assist the healing process by helping the body eliminate
and detoxify. They also act as tonics that strengthen
tissues in the body. The flowers, leaves and roots, of
herbs can be used in a variety of ways such as whole,
powders, pastes, a poultice, fresh, dried, infusions,
and tinctures. They can be very nutritious, and filled
with vitamins and minerals. Following are a few
Herbs like nettle, alfalfa, rosemary,
calendula flowers, and seaweeds, are rich in
vitamins and minerals, which promote a healthy coat, and
the mucus membranes in the body benefit as well as all
the organs, bones and teeth. The high mineral content
also discourages a dog from eating stools. Alfalfa
helps with the pain of arthritis.
Using red clover, nettle, calendula, rosemary and
yarrow, as a tea applying the infusion on a cloth or
just pouring it on the skin as a rinse for itching,
scratching and coat problems.
Aloe Vera helps sooth and heal skin
conditions. Use for bee stings to relieve discomfort.
Thyme vinegar is used specifically for wasp
Use raw garlic either cut up, or make a
garlic vinegar, use raw not heated distilled
vinegar) and put on food daily is very beneficial for
health and can help keep fleas at bay. Garlic
disinfects the digestive tract and assists in the
restoration of friendly bacteria. Garlic has
antiviral properties and is known for its effectiveness
if treating lung ailments. The oils in garlic are
excreted through the respiratory tract and are good for
Anise helps to remove excess mucus.
White horehound combined with coltsfoot
dilates the airways and helps loosen mucus.
Comfrey supplements are an expectorant to
Barberry stimulates the liver and promotes the
flow of bile, and has astringent and antiseptic
qualities that soothe and strengthen the urinary tract.
Milk Thistle is used to help the liver get rid
of built up toxins in the body.
Herbal teas made from caraway seed, yucca, and
gentian aid in digestion. Chamomile is an excellent
nerve relaxant used to treat digestion problems caused
by anxiety. It reduces gas and comforts the digestive
system. Peppermint oil and teas, soothes the stomach
lining, subdues the urge to vomit and also lessens gas.
Black walnut expels internal parasites and
Slippery Elm treats inflammatory conditions
such as asthma, arthritis, cystitis, ulcers, colitis
gastritis and other inflammatory bowel problems,
constipation and or diarrhea.
A combination of liquid chlorophyll with aloe
juice or with psyllium, licorice root, and
hibiscus flowers help cats with hairball
Yucca, given orally is effect in reducing the
itch response in allergic. It is also used to manage
pain from soft tissue inflammation, reduces scarring,
and it is an excellent anti-inflammatory and has been
proven as a safe and effective substitute for
Parsley sprinkled into your petís meal will
strengthen its immune system, especially in cats. Also
parsley tea can soothe the irritated area in the urinary
Mugwort and Gravel Oak also provide relief
from urinary tract disorders.
Echinacea is an antibacterial herb that helps
in the prevention of infection and stimulates the immune
Witch Hazel, used topically, has an astringent
action that stops bleeding and reduces inflammation and
Woundwort diluted, cleanses wounds and
provides relief for sores by using a compress.
Calendula in lotion, cream or gel form is
helpful for cuts and bites, stimulates healing and
reduces pain and inflammation, (do not apply to deep
open wounds, as it heals to quickly, causing scabbing
and prevents drainage for abscesses).
Couchgrass leaves as a spring tonic (animals
seek this grass outside).
Nettle for asthma and sinus problems.
Burdock root cooked like a carrot and is used
as a blood purifier, and may help to correct under lying
These are just a few herbs that can be used safe and
effectively at home to alleviate minor problems or just
enhance your petís health.
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Commercial pet foods put many vitamins and
supplements in their food, and say it is complete and
balanced. However, adding supplements to your pets diet
can enhance his/her health and boost a sick, arthritic,
or geriatric, petís immune system so the animal can heal
itself. Supplements can be given in the form of
different Vitamins or can be ďGreen foods,Ē Colostrum,
and many others. Itís important to remember that each
animal is an individual, and needs to be treated as
such. It is always wise to talk with your Holistic Vet,
about what your petís specific needs are when
supplementing with anything. Listed below are a few
frequently used supplements.
Vitamin C: (Ascorbic acid)(Ester C) Helps fight
viral and bacterial conditions, and supports the immune
system. May help to deter hip dysplasia and other joint
inflammations, as it enables the body to properly
mobilize calcium, which helps to keep bones and joints
from deteriorating. While dogs and cats do produce their
own vitamin C, an injured or sick animal cannot make
enough to heal itself so supplementing may be needed.
Vitamin A: Helps build body tissue. Deficiencies
in vitamin A can result in dry, itchy skin, and gum and
teeth problems. It keeps the liver, the main metabolic
and detoxifying organ in the body, kidneys and lungs
working smoothly. Giving vitamin A to your pets the most
natural way is in cod liver and halibut liver oils.
Vitamin B: Helps to boost the immune system,
gives energy, and boosts the appetite.
Vitamin E: Promotes circulation of the heart and
arteries. It helps connective tissue (skin and muscle)
from losing its elasticity, and it also works as an
Green food can include anything from sprouted grains,
sea kelp, alfalfa, green magma, spiruilia, and sea
Colostrum: Strengthens the immune system, it
helps to prevent autoimmune disorders and allergies,
builds lean muscle tissue, helps to repair tissue and
regenerates nerve cartilage, bone and skin.
These examples are just a few of the most important
supplements for your petís health. There are numerous
supplements available on the market for your petís
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Enzymes are protein like compounds that are the driving
force behind all life processes and are responsible for
keeping the internal systems working. Enzymes are
produced within living cells in plants and animals. The
most important enzymes are metabolic and digestive
enzymes. Metabolic enzymes do the repair work and
remodeling and structuring of each living cell, organ
and tissue. Digestive enzymes aid in the process of
digesting food, and enhance the absorption of nutrients.
Proper digestion affects the bodyís overall health in
very profound ways, and without absorption of nutrients
the body becomes out of balance and toxins store up in
joints, tissues and organs.
Incomplete digestion allows partially digested
particles to be reabsorbed into the bloodstream from the
large intestine, creating immune dysfunction,
inflammation, allergies and other problem. Most raw
foods have enzymes in them, however when foods are
cooked at high temperatures enzymes are destroyed. Most
processed food does not contain enzymes the body needs,
so the body will make a withdrawal from itís own enzyme
bank depleting it. Once the enzyme bank becomes
depleted, and after a period of time this leaves the
animal vulnerable to allergies, disease, cancer, and
promotes the aging process. When the immune system is
under stress, it uses enzymes to maintain body
functions. Enzymes are lost through sickness, anxiety,
pregnancy, urine and feces, and unless they are replaced
the whole immune system is compromised. Animals of all
ages benefit from enzyme therapy for optimum health and
to promote healing of injuries, and serious illness.
Examples of enzymes:
Examples of use:
When taken with food, improves food breakdown and
absorption of nutrients.
Taken on an empty stomach between meals, the enzymes
are carried by the blood throughout the body, to promote
healing, and stimulate the growth of new cells, as well
as the immune system. Use for problems such as chronic
joint pain, respiratory problems, allergies, sinus
infections, bronchitis, urinary tract infections, and
Make a paste and apply topically to wounds, cuts,
burns, and hot spots. Paste can also be applied to
fingertips or gauze and used for tooth and gum
A poultice made will neutralize insect bites.
*Because enzymes thin the blood and help prevents
clotting some experts warn enzyme supplements be stopped
7-10 days before and after surgery. Then resume usage to
*When the diet cannot be balanced with natural foods
to provide vitamin and mineral requirements, it is
necessary to supplement with a vitamin-mineral
preparation. Excessive amounts of most vitamins and
minerals are not harmful. Consult your holistic
Disclaimer: these practices don't take
the place of veterinary care.
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