Holistic wellness– meaning all-encompassing treatment and care- has long been a focus of human medicine and nutrition. But it extends to our favorite furry friends as well. Embracing a host of topics from grain-free nutrition to cutting-edge medical procedures, holistic pet health aims to ensure your best friend stays healthy and happy while effectively treating any conditions that could arise. Here are a few of the latest trends in pet health from the holistic viewpoint.
Fecal Transplants for Intestinal Health
Before you instantly start gagging, it’s a procedure that’s frequently done in humans to get rid of damaging infections such as Clostridium difficile. Healthy fecal matter is encapsulated in a pill and swallowed by patients with C.diff to erase infections and promote microbial gut health. It works very well in humans, and it’s also proven to work well in animals.
There are billions of microbes in our intestines that play a part in our digestive and immune systems. It’s the same situation with dogs and many other mammals. The fecal flora from a healthy dog could be encapsulated and fed to an ailing dog with digestive issues, restoring gut health quickly and easily without harsh steroids and antibiotics. A commercial product is currently in the works from Dr. Margo Roman of Massachusetts, a veterinarian with expertise treating dogs with digestive complaints.
Iron Injections for Veterinary Oncology
Humans with cancer, or those undergoing chemotherapy, can suffer from anemia caused by bone marrow suppression. It turns out dogs with cancer have similar problems. They can become weak, lethargic, and have a reduced appetite. The newest holistic trend in treating pet cancer is to give intramuscular iron injections or prescribe iron supplements for a dog undergoing chemo. The supplements come in a liquid form that can be easily mixed into wet or dry food, boosting your dog’s energy levels and appetite during a time of illness.
This has been a continuing trend in the pet health industry, as more owners look at the labels of their dogs’ food. The current recommendation is to move away from “feed-grade” pet foods that may contain carcinogens or other toxins, and move towards “human-grade” foods that the FDA has deemed fit for human consumption.
Dogs aren’t naturally meant to eat processed corn or pork byproducts. Instead, there are a variety of dog foods geared towards what dogs would have eaten in the wild: cage-free duck, organic oats, and vegetables. For dogs suffering from allergies or skin conditions, changing the food to an all-natural source may help alleviate these issues. Regardless of your dog’s medical conditions, all-natural foods have been proven to give your pet more energy and better nutrition.
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