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Veterinary Homeopathy

Veterinary Homeopathy “Homeopathy for pets, you say? I thought that was just for people!” That’s a common misperception among a growing number of clients I see that are involved with alternatives for their own health. With today’s growing demands on our minds and bodies we, as a collective society, have begun an awareness of alternatives to drugs in order to attempt to live healthier lives. This extrapolates to our pets, who have become part of the family. Physiologically, our pets are very similar to us, in fact most of the drugs we rely on, are used in veterinary medicine as well.

Homeopathy is a 200-year-old system of medicine discovered by a German physician chemist, and translator named Samuel Hahnemann. Homeopathy is derived from the Greek word ” homoios” which means like or similar. It is a therapy based on the principle like cures like. Hahnemann ingested the bark of the cinchona tree which contains quinine (at that time it was used to treat malaria) which caused him to experience the symptoms of malaria (most notably the chills, heat, and delirium associated with malarial fever). When he stopped taking the cinchona, the symptoms abated. From this experience, he postulated that; drugs, which cause the symptoms of disease, could actually cure the disease. He then set out to use the smallest possible amount of drug and began his life long research of testing them in their use to cure disease.

A few years ago a client came to me as her dog had immune mediated polyarthritis (arthritis of more than one joint). The owner, wanting to try some natural therapy had given the dog Echinacea for the immune problem. As long as the dog was on the Echinacea, he would do fine, but when off of it, he would begin to limp. One day, the dog began breaking out in skin blisters that would open, ooze clear fluid, and then heal. At this point, she called me to help her with the use of homeopathy. One of the symptoms that Echinacea causes is blister like eruptions or boils. It was the Echinacea in its crude form that was probably causing this. At that point I prescribed homeopathic (diluted) Echinacea and within a week, the dog had stopped limping, and no further blisters had erupted. At a six -month follow up, the dog was normal with no recurrence of either the limping or the blisters. Remember that drugs that cause the symptoms can cure the symptoms.

How about the cases of the midnight snacker in the garbage! (If your dogs or cats are like mine!) They may get nauseated, irritable and thirsty, with vomiting and a grumbling stomach. Nux vomica is excellent in these situations and has worked well for me time and time again. If there is diarrhea with vomiting then you can try Arsenicum album. When the symptoms are repetitive vomiting only, then try Ipecac in a homeopathic preparation, as ipecac syrup will actually causes vomiting. Remember, like cures like.

The medicines are prepared from pure, natural, animal, vegetable or mineral substances listed in the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the U.S. and in the European Pharmacopoeia. They are processed in modern labs by a process of serial dilution and succussion (repeated shaking). During this process, the medicines are diluted with water and alcohol from ten times to millions of times. The medicines come in pill form or liquid and are usually administered orally.

By the nature of their preparation, there are no unwanted side effects to the medications. It is safe to use on neonates, geriatrics and during pregnancy.

I have been using Homeopathy in my practice of Veterinary medicine for the past 4 years and have been astounded at some of the results. The above are but a few examples. It is a hard pill to swallow (and humbling I might add) when, after four years of grueling Veterinary College, you graduate and find that diseases that you thought you could cure are getting worse and worse.

I see chronic problems almost everyday in my practice. These include ear infections, urinary tract infections and skin infections to name a few. Homeopathy can offer a cure to these problems if used in the correct manner. Chronic problems can take years to cure with homeopathy by careful prescribing of the most appropriate medicines. Remedies that I have found useful for urinary tract problems include Nux vomica (poison nut), Arsenicum album, Cantharis (Spanish fly), Phosphorous, to name a few. The chronic problems can be tricky to treat and sometimes they are best dealt with through a homeopathic veterinarian who has studied this medical art and who is familiar with treating chronic diseases.

Homeopathy is excellent when the problems are acute in nature. Insect stings or bite wounds with swellings can be treated with Apis (bee venom) when they are very puffy, Ledum (Marsh Tea) when they are cold to the touch, or Hypericum (St. John’s Wart) when they are tender to the touch.

Currently there are few recognized avenues to study this medical form. Richard Pitcairn has been practicing Veterinary homeopathy for the past 25 years in Oregon and has been teaching Veterinarians all over North America for the past 6 years. He offers both an introductory and advanced training courses for veterinarians. The British Institute of Homeopathy (which has a veterinary course) is a correspondence course, and the Vancouver Homeopathic Academy (human) in Vancouver, offers a 4-year part time diploma program of approximately 600 hours of class time study.

The beauty of this medical form is that there are no unwanted side effects to the medicines, they are inexpensive, and can be found over the counter at most progressive health stores. Most health stores now have copies of “Dr. Richard Pitcairn’s Guide to Natural Health for Dogs and Cats “and “Homeopathy for Cats and Dogs, Small Doses for Small Animals” by Dr. Don Hamilton, which are excellent references for this method of treatment.

Article courtesy of:
Michael Goldberg
Hudson Place Veterinary Clinic
Vancouver BC

17 Responses to this Article, So Far

  1. Avatar Susan says:

    You should be ashamed of yourself. There is no clinical evidence that homeopathy works better than a placebo. Your clients are spending their limited dollars on an unproven and largely useless treatment.

    • Avatar Marko says:

      Ashamed? Why? MILLIONS of people use homeopathy daily…

      While you are entitled to your opinion, it would be nice if you backed it up with something.

  2. Avatar Tristan says:

    Yeah you definitely should be ashamed. The fact that people use it doesn’t mean it works. And frankly your ignorance is inexcusable. Every single study done on homeopathy says the exact same thing. That it has no better affect than an similarly administered placebo. Every. Single. Study. Not a single study done by a party that won’t gain financially It’s not medicine, it’s primitive nonsense. You’re telling people to not give their pets medicine. You call it “progressive”. No, it’s not “progressive” it’s nonsense, very lucrative nonsense, pitched to ignorant middle class people who don’t know crap about homeopathy much less actual medicine. The author is a scam artist, and is going to kill peoples pets so he can make a quick buck selling them water. Don’t listen to this pathetic fraud, if your pets need medical attention seek actual medical attention rather than listening to the drivel of bullshit artists like the author of this article.

    You may not know this about pet lovers but a lot of them grieve more deeply for their pets then the people in their lives. You’re a monster. The only reason people like you aren’t behind bars is because “Natural remedies” don’t have to prove they work, you know, unlike real medicine that actually has to demonstrate that it has an affect, so it’s buy at your own risk.

    • Avatar Marko says:

      While anyone can say X doesn’t work, the argument is only meaningful if you back it up with something more than your personal opinion and personal biases. Please feel free to submit any reference that supports your claim.

      Of course it’s possible that some people selling homeopathic products are crooks. Every industry has crooks. But to suggest that the whole industry is crooked based on your passionate opinion…that’s a weak argument.

  3. Avatar Jody says:

    Are there any homeopathic remedies for my 11 year old Basset Hound, (non spayed) who is in fine heatlh expect for her anal glads that do not express themselves.

  4. Avatar Joyce says:

    Very interesting! I found this site while checking out Nux Vomica for colic in horses. What is your experience with Nux Vomica in horses?

    I wholeheartedly believe in Homeopathic care–God gave us everything we need naturally. The problem is we have gotten so far away from basics that we need to relearn them and understand them!

  5. Avatar Joyce says:

    Can you recommend anything for a horse that cribs? Especially at feeding time? She is wearing down her teeth. Is it possible that she has ulcers and they get irritated by her grain?

  6. Avatar Dave says:

    I feel it necessary to respond to some inaccuracies in the comment by Tristan, who unfortunately allowed emotion to intervene in what could be a good debate.

    Homeopathy IS MOST DEFINITELY replete with studies – studies often far superior than any study involving chemical/pharmaceutical drugs. My bookshelves sag under the weight of the huge tomes that line them and mine is only a small collection of homeopathic studies. Homeopathic remedies are unique in the world of medicine in that they have all been PROVEN on humans before use on humans or animals. Not just any humans though, but the people who have made it their life work to study homeopathy test remedies on themselves and then by tirelessly cross-referencing their results with the findings of other ‘provers’ present comprehensive documentation with medical and scientific reasoning to those who care to follow in their wake.

    The fact that, at this time, the science of homeopathy eludes the minds of most regular scientific -thinking people, seems to be sufficient evidence to the non-believers that this is all hokum – that is those people who have not spent countless hours reading through the writings of Hahnemann, Kent, Boericke etc. don’t yet have the knowledge to vehemently criticize from a standpoint of authority.

    It is worth remembering that at various times, mankind has considered such doctoring methods as blood-letting, arsenic and mercury poisoning, leeches, excorcism and many more barbaric remedies as perfectly acceptable and perhaps one day, surgery and pharmaceutical poisoning will join this list, whilst homeopathy moves to the forefront.

    When you first witness the remarkable effects of properly prescribed homeopathic remedies; when you see the living proof of a healing where conventional medicine has failed; when your animals are living healthy happy lives several years after vets have pronounced cases as ‘no-hope and suggest in kindness to put them to sleep now’ you will understand that homeopathy has something to offer, even if you don’t understand how or why it works.

    Finally, I have heard people curse homeopathy whilst giving Bach Flower Remedies to their cats and dogs. Flower remedies are all part of the same mechanism of simillimum.

    We all have free choice – let’s use it wisely. Namaste

  7. Avatar Ray Alexander says:

    Maybe this third attempt will be the right combination. My 12 year old Basenji (female, spayed) has begun to pass red blood in her urine. She also has lost partial control of her bladder functions. is this a sign of urinary tract infection, and can the condition be treated with a natural herb ? Most respectfully, Ray

    • Avatar Marko says:

      Imo, This condition is best treated by a visit to a veterinarian as the dog is sick and likely in pain. Your dog needs to be examined by a real live person. Please do not linger.

      If it is a urinary tract infection then the will likely prescribe antibiotics.
      IF the vet has homeopathic experience, he/she may also prescribe homeopathic medication that may help.

      Good luck.

  8. Avatar Spirit175 says:

    People should refrain themselves from commenting on any topic without its proper knowledge and experience. As i can see some posts that are targeting this wonderful science and this is because either they don’t know what homeopathy and have its experience themselves. These people are just manipulators without any justification of what they say. First know the topic,experience it and then you have the perfect right to comment on it and that would be authentic.
    As for my case i have a spitz dog and he was diagnosed by the vet. Of having parvo,a deadly disease and very less dog make out alive. He was having bloody diarrhea, inactive,vomiting bile, dehydration was there and everytime i had to take him to vet for administrating iv fluids and also he ate no food for consecutive 20 days. By the condition he was in,it seems he couldn’t make it alive.Vet were doing everything possible and i thank them for it but his condition wasn’t improving as expected. So i thought of using homeopathy remedy,i searched the net and read books on homeopathy and thereby administered arsenic album,mercurious corrosive and china, also used nux vomica at times and within a week he was healthy and active as before. I didn’t believe in this remedy before but its knowledge and experience made me to explore it more. I also used it in my family who don’t believe in it, in order to authenticate it and experience its effects and everytime it passed with flying colours. And when someone says its placebo effect,well will animals have it too,i think no.

  9. Avatar julie kalash says:

    my 6 yr old chihuahua started having seizures 2 months ago. I know of 4 that she has had usually lasting up to 15 minutes. Today she went on for 1.5 hours before I took her to the vet they will take blood work, sedate her and moniter her for 2 days. Do you have a homeopathic remedy I could give her to stop/prevent this?

    • Avatar Marko says:

      I don’t have one no….
      Seizures are serious and any medication to treat them should be dispensed by a homeopathic veterinarian or a regular veterinarian that has seen your pet.
      Good luck

  10. Avatar Dev says:

    is it possible for a cat to die if i give her nux vom 30 liquid prescribed by a vet? If yes what are the toxic doses? The cat is 3 months old. Please reply fast

  11. Avatar Monica says:

    An holistic vet treated my cat for months with homeopathy, my cat just got worst. The bad thing about homeopathic vets is that they do not run any test, they just base their diagnosis on symptoms. I guess homeopathy works, all those substances must do something, right? but it’s SO slow! and it doesn’t work for everything. I changed vets, my cat had blood, urine and fecal tests done along with an ultrasound, they found a rare form of enteritis that was starting to affect the liver. She is on corticosteroids now,the same type of medicine that the holistic vet said would kill her, she is now perfectly fine and only takes a dose of prednisone every month, and her new ultrasound shows a big improvement! I think that homeopaths should learn to recognize their limits and refer patients to other doctors when they don’t have effective treatments; most of them are too proud to accept this and they just criticize everything regular doctors do

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