April 9, 2013

Natural Pet: Naturopathy, Herbal Medicine, Bach Flower Remedies, and Homeopathy

Filed under: Holistic Pet Care — Tags: , — 1st Pet Naturals @ 9:00 am

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Natural Pet - Holistic PetNaturopathic practitioners do not believe in the use of drugs and surgery, but instead believe in a drugless system of therapies. Such therapies may include using the forces of light, water, heat and massage. Specifically, naturopathic treatments can include:

  • Fasting
  • Hot/cold treatments
  • Exercising
  • Sun bathing
  • Good hygiene
  • A nutritious diet
  • Supplements
  • Vitamins and minerals


Many naturopathic practitioners use natural homeopathic drugs. However, there are some who feel that homeopathic remedies are considered drugs, and therefore don’t use them in their treatment regimes.

For more information on naturopathy and certified animal naturopaths visit the American Council of Animal Naturopathy.

Herbal Medicine:

The focus of herbal medicine is to use specific herbal leaves, roots, and flowers to heal one back to health. With a drug store around the corner, you may find the idea of using plants as medicine ridiculous, but there is a long history of people using herbs to help heal their ailments. Even animals seek specific leaves, roots, and flowers to treat themselves back to health.

The concept behind herbal medicine is that plants are living and therefore have energy. This energy helps the body to detoxify, provides the body nutrients, and aids the body in functioning normally. Whereas synthetic drugs, although able to have an effect on the body, do not contain the same energy as a herbal remedy.

Examples of herbal medicine are:

  • Aloe Vera
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Astragalus
  • Chamomile
  • Echinacea
  • Goldenseal
  • Milk Thistle
  • Raspberry Leaf
  • Valerian
  • Crystal Start

Herbal remedies are typically given in large quantities many times throughout the day. This makes it difficult to directly administer to pets, so using capsules or hiding a remedy in your pet’s food might be necessary. Herbal medicine can be also be paired with naturopathic treatments.

It is also wise to note that herbal remedies are medicinal, and if improperly used can have dangerous effects. Consult a veterinarian before administering herbal medicine to your pet.

Bach Flower Remedies:

Bach flower remedies are an interesting holistic treatment because the therapy focuses on treating emotional stress rather than physical body illnesses.

Flower remedies are diluted infusions of flowers and tree buds. There are thirty-eight Bach remedies, with each corresponding to a different mental condition or personality type. Flower remedies can be combined with each other to address different emotional conditions such as fear, uncertainty, lack of interest, despair, loneliness, oversensitivity, and over concern.

Although it is hard to know exactly how a pet is feeling, veterinarians are able to choose the best flower remedy by predicting an animal’s emotions, based on the emotions that occur with different medical illnesses.

Some of the remedies include:

  • Aspen
  • Beech
  • Centaury
  • Chicroy
  • Honeysuckle
  • Mustard
  • Star of Bethlehem
  • Willow

You can add a few drops of a flower remedy into your pet’s water or you can put 1-2 drops directly into their mouth. Flower remedies are not medicine but rather just a type of therapy. The remedies are safe to use with other treatments.

For flower remedy success stories in animals visit The Original Back Flower Remedies.


Dr. Loridawn Gordon has discussed homeopathy earlier in this blog, but I will touch upon it once again since it is one of the most popular holistic treatments.

Homeopathy was founded on one basic unifying principle: “Like is cured by like” (aka: The Law of Similars). This means that the treatment found in homeopathy, uses medicine that is known to cause similar symptoms to what an individual already has. Sounds bizarre, right? Well, the miracle in homeopathy is that the medicine used actually triggers a reaction that allows the body to heal itself.

What is even more interesting is that instead of providing a remedy for each symptom that one shows (i.e. headache, fever, congestion, coughing, body pain), just one remedy is used for a whole set of symptoms.

Homeopathic remedies are made from diluted herbs, minerals, and animal products (I’m talking about animal toxins, not animal parts). The more diluted the remedy is, the stronger it actually becomes… again, I know it sounds bizarre, but it’s true!

Since only one remedy is provided to an individual, a doctor has to consider their patient’s unique physical, mental, and emotional health; or in other words, the patient’s whole health. Homeopaths treat a person or animal in their entirety, not just for the problems that they display.

Homeopathic treatment can be paired with naturopathic and nutritional therapies. However, it should not be used with acupuncture or Chinese medicine because they are too similar and may interfere with each other.

Common issues that are treated with homeopathy in pets are:

  • Allergies
  • Arthritis
  • Cancer
  • Diarrhea
  • Gingivitis
  • Immune system disorders
  • Kennel cough
  • Kidney disease
  • Respiratory disease
  • Urinary disorders


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  1. In herbal medicine there are so many herbs like flowers, leaves, and roots. Just like bach flowers, which are also cures themselves.

    Comment by Shagydeep — April 29, 2013 @ 9:43 am

  2. Though Bach Flower remedies are primarily used to treat emotional ailments, emotional health directly affects physical health. So yes, we couldn’t agree more with you!

    Comment by 1stPetNaturals.com — May 2, 2013 @ 6:43 pm

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Disclaimer: 1st Pet Naturals is an education resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure disease, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet is taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.