August 31, 2016
You’ve probably heard about holistic medicine for humans, but for your pet? Holistic living for our animal companions is quickly gaining ground in the promotion of optimal health and well-being. So popular in fact, Tuesday, August 30th is Holistic Pet Day.
According to TheWholeDog.com, National Holistic Pet Day was founded by Colleen Paige of the Animal Miracle Foundation and it’s all about HEALTH and a more natural, integrative (“whole”) and preventative lifestyle which focuses on – and embraces – the whole animal, instead of just focusing on disease and the treating of individual symptoms.
Typically, traditional veterinarian medicine (also known as western or conventional medicine) focuses on an isolated health condition, disease, physical organ or system. Treatment often targets masking or relieving the symptoms instead of addressing and resolving the underlying issue. While both conventional vet medicine and holistic care are important, natural therapies and treatments may prove more effective especially when traditional animal medicine has failed to resolve a chronic, or lingering, health issue.
What is “Holistic Pet Care?”
Holistic pet care focuses on an “integrated” wellness approach to “whole” animal health and well-being and typically includes the following areas:
- With an emphasis on nutritional whole and raw foods
- Plenty of fresh water free of chemicals, fluoride and chlorine
- Physical (including plenty of fresh air, exercise and chemical-free grooming); and
- Mental Stimulation, Proper Socialization and Emotional Balance
- Both Indoors and Outdoors
As commonly used with humans, holistic care for pets includes the following alternative therapies and modalities (healing interventions):
- Needle and Laser
- For arthritis, back pain, trauma and wounds, surgery and inflammation
Massage, Reiki and Chiropractic (spinal manipulation and manual therapy)
- Herbal (also known as botanical) and Homeopathic
- Supplements, Minerals & Vitamins
So on August 30th, take the opportunity to re-evaluate the quality of life you are currently providing for your animal family member. Could you do something better, different or more natural? It’s not necessary (or even recommended) to change everything overnight when it comes to your pet’s health. Just take some time to prioritize their health and educate yourself on best practices especially from a holistic perspective. Changing even one thing toward a better life for your pet) is priceless.
9 Ways to Care for Your Pet More Holistically
- Learn more about the foods and treats you feed your pet (most are made with “feed-grade” ingredients permitted to have higher levels of toxins). Do some research and with that new information, focus on more natural, whole food and human-grade options. (Here are two great places to start your research: TruthAboutPetFood.com and PlanetPaws.ca.)
- Evaluate the cleaning products you use inside your home and make sure they are chemical-free and as natural as possible.
- Also be aware of potential dangers outside your home; including the use of any potentially toxic lawn fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides or insecticides.
- Regularly exercise with your pet (this is a win-win for you both!).
- Reduce your pet’s reliance on prescription medications (that often create mild to severe side effects) by implementing an overall holistic lifestyle encouraging whole body health regardless of age or past health history.
- Find a local holistic vet.
- Learn and take advantage of new holistic healing interventions; like massage, supplements, acupuncture and more (refer back to the list of Alternative Therapies above).
- Use titer testing (a simple blood test) to check for current levels of vaccine immunity instead of over-vaccinating.
- Use natural tick and flea repellants instead of options that contain potentially toxic chemicals.
For more information about holistic pet care, go to these websites:
To find a holistic veterinarian in your local area, search the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association’s database at www.ahvma.org/find-a-holistic-veterinarian/.
Cold Noses News is a K9-exclusive newsletter created and published by a lifelong dog-lover (presently owned by two Great Danes) and former dog business owner (a mobile doggy daycare service, the first of its kind in Denver in 2001). Now “paying it forward,” the Cold Noses News blog and monthly newsletter offers the best up-to-date and relevant information dog guardians need to make better informed decisions for their beloved furry K9 family members.
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