Alternative medicine often gets a bad reputation in the mainstream medical and veterinary professions. It is frequently dismissed as a "new thing" with little tangible (or scientifically measurable) impact on human or pet health conditions. This article examines alternative medicine for pets and evaluates its position in animal healthcare.
The outlook that alternative medicine is a new thing is a little short-sighted to say the least. Some forms of "alternative" medicine, such as acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine have existed for millennia. Other approaches such as homeopathy and hypnosis have existed for centuries. "Alternative medicine" has helped countless people throughout the ages overcome a vast range of health issues.
People do not want or need prescription drugs for every slight ailment that we suffer from. Over dependency on medication can do our bodies more harm than good. But it does line the pockets of big pharmaceutical companies so will be promoted by those in high places.
On the flip side to that argument, turning to alternative medicine for everything is a dangerous approach. Not many alternative health practitioners would suggest acupuncture to treat a collapsed lung.
The answer lies in a holistic approach. Alternative medicine has its place in modern society alongside conventional medicine. The two approaches should complement each other and accept each other's spheres of influence.
The exact same argument stands when we look at the health of our pets.
Modern veterinary science has an over reliance on medicating and vaccinating our animals. Pharmaceutical companies benefit and vet bills rocket, but this approach is not helping our animals. In fact, pets today are more likely to be ill in spite of this widespread vaccination and medication!
We feed them with over-processed, nutritionally lacking pet food. They live in an environment that is far more polluted and toxic than ever before. The lack of exercise that plagues us as people, also has a detrimental impact on the health of our pets. Is it any wonder that our pets have become more prone to disease and illness?
How can we address this imbalance?
Holistically: Conventional veterinary treatment has its place for severe conditions and illnesses, but there are many common complaints that we, as pet owners, can treat ourselves. Avoid over-vaccination and over-medication and save trips to the vet for when they are really needed.
Alternative medicine for pets is here to stay. Boost your pet's immune system and treat common minor health complaints at home.