POTENTIAL FOR DEEP CURES WITH HOMEOPATHY
Many veterinarians have become frustrated with the many recurrences of diseases in their patients. Others see domestic animals living shorter life spans, suffering with increased levels of chronic diseases and have owners requesting different approaches. You may have heard from clients or colleagues of miraculous cures using homeopathy or other modalities. Journal articles certainly focus on the successes. You may have seen animals treated unsuccessfully with homeopathic remedies who then present in your practice. People may tell you they have used homeopathy to no effect, then tell you what herbs, combination homeopathic remedies or minerals they gave.
In my experience, the potential of homeopathy is to cure at the deepest level, with all symptoms resolving and the animal living a long and healthy life. Only a deep understanding of the principles of homeopathy and a lot of practice can enable you to cure this way. Even when unable to achieve these deep cures, homeopathy carefully prescribed will frequently improve the overall wellbeing and health of the animal in spite of the persistence of the original, uncured pathology (i.e. cats living 8 happy, active years after diagnosis of severe renal disease.) The rest of this paper will cover the guiding principle of homeopathy and show the potential healing that can occur.
These cases are to give you an idea of the breadth of conditions that can be successfully treated by homeopathy.
Baby, a big black cat, came to me at 9 years of age. She had been receiving Depo Medrol injections for 8 years at an ever-increasing frequency, up to every 6 weeks, to keep her from licking her abdomen raw and bloody (diagnosed as Feline Endrocine Alopecia). I treated her homeopathically for 9 months before her abdomen was free of lesions. She had no skin lesions from then until her death at 17 years. One year later, she recovered quickly from an upper respiratory infection for which 2 other cats in the house had to be treated for 2 weeks. A year after that she again recovered quickly with no treatment from the same fever of unknown origin that the fourth and fifth cat in the house suffered with for a week or so. All cats became ill and were under another veterinarian’s care when 15-18 years old and died within a few months of each other. Shortly before her death Baby did lick her fur to about ½ length without disturbing the skin.
An eight-year-old cat came to me with conjunctivitis, photophobia, spasms of the lids, and a puritic, discharging otitis. She also had a history of poor or finicky appetite, vomiting hairballs (or the gagging cough), dull hair coat with spells of miliary dermatitis (Alopecia, scabs, redness), has always shed a lot and is aggressive to one of the other cats in the house. Current treatment had been Laxatone, antibiotic/steroid eye drops and occasional Depo injections. The symptoms continued to recur sporadically and her owners reported she was aging “normally” – less active, more finicky and less affectionate. After homeopathic treatment, her eye and ear problems resolved, and a year later she had some scabbiness when the other cats got fleas. She has no more “hairball” gagging/vomiting, and will eat anything (salad, spaghetti, raw meat,…), she does not seem to shed, but her glowing coat thinned out appropriately for the summer and she is much less aggressive with the other cat. Her energy is better (“she’s playing like she was a kitten and even broke a glass the other day.”), appetite is fine and she is again a lap cat. This result often, though not always happens when good holistic treatment is given. The overall health and even longevity of each animal is improved along with elimination of the current symptoms. Although this does not always happen, it is always my goal and I teach the animal guardians to have it be their goal as well.
Isis had chronic coughing since 6 weeks of age that was non-responsive to conventional treatment, yet in the face of this ill health her vaccines were continued. Six hours after getting her annual boosters at age 5, she had to be admitted to the hospital for oxygen with a severe asthma attack. With conventional treatment of 3-4 medications, she continued having asthmatic respiration with occasional hospitalizations for the next 2 years. given carefully while she was withdrawn from drugs resolved the asthma problem and she has had no conventional drugs, no asthmatic breathing and less coughing for the next 7 years (to date). She is treated every 6 months or so to work at permanently curing her cough. She has had a rodent appear and disappear twice in the last 2 years, as the body worked through different remedies.
“Heidi” Dow was a 14 year old spayed female with a growth on her right eye that looked red and angry (local vet said “cancerous”.) It was attached to the third eyelid, covered ½ the eye. It bled easily when rubbed or even touched gently. It was very sensitive to touch, causing this nice dog to growl. There were 2 firm growths on Rt. paw and in the middle of the chest. The owner gave Thuja 200c in July when it was first noticed and there was no change. She repeated Thuja 200c in August to no avail. She then gave Thuja 1M (date? In Aug) and the next day the tumor was more swollen and was dripping blood. She has been deaf since1998. I prescribed Nitric acid 200c on September 8. From 9/14 to 9/18 had normal hearing. By 9/24 there was no blood and the tumor was smaller, though varied in size and shape, and she was back to normal energy and appetite. An LM potency of Nitric acid was given for the next 3 months, then a 10M Nitric acid. By April, she has been behaving like a young dog (Almost knocked the husband over which she has not done in years), woofing and pesky and pushy and sits and bounces up and down. Now doing 4 mile walks with running, leading and being adventuresome. The tumor is completely gone, there is no eye discharge, the ears are clear, there is no snoring and her appetite is fine.
“Dudley” Derecola is a 15 year old neutered male Yorkie with kidney problems. In June of 2001 he had diarrhea and vomiting every 2 hours while at the same time drinking tons of water. The emergency hospital administered IV fluids and antibiotic shots. Blood values: were Creatinine 1.77, BUN 36.9, Phos 10.36. He was discharged on “senior” dog food. During the next few months he worsened: drinking tons of water, urinating very often, not eating, loss of 2 pounds, very incontinent during the night, eyes watery, shivering early a.m. and sometimes early p.m., good energy on dog walks, overall does not feel well, dark black lumpy mole under right arm. An initial prescription of Natrum muriaticum resolved the incontinence but nothing else. Bryonia, repeated when needed at increasing potencies, resolved all this dog’s problems. Tinkle Tonic (herbal) was used daily for the first few months, then discontinued. The owner switched to a fresh food diet, did not vaccinate and learned how to not worry so much. As of June 2002, he has been eating well, eyes are clear for the most part, mole is basically gone, drinking and urinating are normal, good energy every day, sleeps well, not restless, no tummy aches and his blood values are back to normal.
The power of homeopathy lies in the potential to cure to this level. The “illness” resolves and most importantly, the animal feels better overall emotionally and physically. Most animals have an amelioration of symptoms and feel better overall and some animals have this deep cure. Some animals never respond to homeopathy or any other modality including conventional, some respond to one modality and not others. 95% of my clients are appreciative of the process even when their animals are worsening. My satisfaction level with this approach is very high. Though I still want to cure every case, I know that the gentle holistic approach is more satisfying to the owner, to me and to the animal.
PRINCIPLES TO FOLLOW FOR DEEP CURES
Understanding the principles of how an animal becomes ill, and where to focus our attention is the most important part of choosing a remedy. There is no need to find the one perfect remedy, rather to make a careful selection and know your reasons for that selection. Then you watch to reaction of the body to the remedy and use the changes to decide on your next prescription. Sometimes this process takes weeks, sometimes months to years to the whole lifetime. Books on the principles and philosophy of homeopathy will guide you in how to evaluate your cases and which symptoms are important. Reading philosophy books or the philosophy parts of animal books (Day, Hamilton, Wolff) is critically important if you want to have any mastery of homeopathy.
1. The body heals itself (or tries to) by producing “symptoms”.
How does a being (person or animal or plant) get ill? There is an essence (vital force, or chi) with inherent weaknesses. When triggered by viruses, bacteria, stress (physical, mental, and emotional), poor diet, vaccinations, the aging process, or environmental stressors, the body produces symptoms in an attempt to recover balance. An analogy is that of a slide projector. When a light (trigger) shines through the slide (vital force), images (symptoms) appear on the screen. Merely removing a symptom by surgery or topical treatment is like cutting a hole in the screen to remove the image. This does not get rid of the defect on the slide (vital force), and so the symptoms recur or new, deeper symptoms appear. Symptoms, therefore, are good – evidence that the vital force (energy field of the body) is doing the job of attempting to re-balance itself.
2. There is first an energetic imbalance, then physical manifestations.
Most beings seem to follow a sequence when getting ill, and very importantly, need to follow the reverse to recover permanently. At first, illness is an energetic imbalance observable only at an intuitive level “Doc, I know my cat is getting sick.” Second, there is a functional disturbance, seen for example as a cat going to the litter box frequently, with a normal U/A. Then there is inflammation, which is easily seen by a fever, or inflammatory cells on the U/A, or the cat showing pain on urination. Last, there is pathology, where we would see thickening of the bladder wall, stones, and chronicity. The ideal time to treat is when the imbalance is still at the energetic or functional level. Once pathology has occurred, we must be very patient to allow time for the pathology to inflame and then heal at the energetic level. This can take about a month of healing for every year the vital force has been ill.
3. There is one on-going “disease”, not just separate, acute episodes.
4. To really heal, the totality of symptoms must be addressed, not just the current problem(s).
This treats the underlying imbalance (one disease).
Every time the energy field is triggered and moves out of balance, it produces symptoms, but they may be different symptoms each time. Successful holistic treatment must be based on all the symptoms and all the idiosyncrasies of this animal. There is only one “disease” to be treated, and it has been there since birth (and maybe before). Different homeopathic medicines are often needed at different times because we only see part of the underlying imbalance. An analogy is to think of an iceberg. There is a large, unseen portion underneath the water (the deep energy imbalance) and a few peaks visible (the symptoms we can see and are being asked to get rid of). The goal is to dissolve the body of the iceberg along with the peaks, not just blunt the peaks. When there is more stress (bacteria, environmental, emotional, etc) the water level drops and we see more peaks (symptoms). As a homeopath, I am thrilled to see more or new symptoms (along with overall or deep level improvement). Since the vital force (energy field) is reacting more strongly and clearly, I can select the next homeopathic medicine more accurately. Each remedy choice is based on the current symptoms, taking into account the past symptoms.
When a dog comes in with generalized eczema or a cat with miliary dermatitis and no characteristic symptoms, it is difficult to select the similimum (the medicine that will rebalance the vital force at a very deep level). If we add historical symptoms of worse in winter, craving heat, wanting sips of water frequently, being very fearful and fastidious and having diarrhea and vomiting episodes yearly we can select a remedy with a higher probability of healing.
5. Like cures like. Similar replaces similar. Provings.
How do we know what each remedy can be used to treat? Homeopathic remedies are given to healthy humans, and the symptoms that appear are carefully recorded over a period of months. When an ill person or animal shows the same symptoms and characteristics of a “prover”, the medicine will improve the health of the ill person or animal. For instance, when a prover takes homeopathically prepared Arsenicum album they become restless, anxious, chilly, have diarrhea and vomiting among many other symptoms. When a person (or animal) with any symptoms also reports that they are chilly, anxious and can’t seem to keep still, you would prescribe Arsenicum album. The homeopathically prepared Ars alb would be stronger than, and similar to, the energetic imbalance of the ill person, and so would replace the illness, causing a cure.
Hahnemann states: “the stronger destroys the weaker: It has a similar action, and because of its predominance, takes over precisely those parts of the organism until then affected by the weaker one, which since it can now no longer act, disappears. In other words, as soon as the new disease agent, similar to the first but stronger, takes over the patient’s sensations, the vital principle, because of its unity, can no longer feel the weaker similar one; it is extinguished, it exists no more, since it is never something material but only a dynamic affection.” Once the dynamic (energetic) imbalance is corrected, the physical manifestations disappear even bony proliferations, cancerous growths, bladder stones, etc.
Once the list of symptoms with quantification is written, we use several texts to identify the matching remedy. A Repertory is an index listing symptoms along with the remedies that have caused these symptoms in the provings or have cured these symptoms in clinical cases. Here you look up each symptom on your list and find which remedies are common to most of the symptoms, especially the characteristic, or odd ones. Then you read about your choices in Materia Medicas, which are different authors’ interpretations of the provings based on experiences in their practices. For animals it is good to use those that closely follow the provings (Allen, Hering, Clarke) as well as more biased ones. Therapeutic Materia Medicas for animals and people (Chris Day & George MacLeod are popular authors) list diseases and the remedies that in their practices often were useful. Careful! – This may entice you to forget about looking at the individual. They are most useful if you have written down the symptoms, then check the therapeutic mm, then read a more detailed one to confirm your choice. There are expensive computer programs that offer the materia medicas and repertories in formats that will speed up your prescribing. Most experienced homeopaths recommend waiting to buy these until you have used the hard cover books for awhile as you seem to learn more with them. Kent Homeopathic now has a very inexpensive small version and there are web sites with free materia medica material.
To summarize, remedy selection is made by listing the current and past symptoms displayed by the animal, including lab tests and physical findings, and finding a remedy that displayed many of the same symptoms when tested. Repertories, Materia Medicas and Therapeutic Materia Medicas are used to make the final selection of the remedy to try first.
WHAT POTENCY WOULD BE BEST?
Remember how remedies are made – successive dilutions and succussions. Higher potencies are more powerful than lower potencies.
1. Lower potencies (6x up to 30c)
a. Need to be given more frequently (up to twice a day, though often only q 7 d.;
b. Have a much broader effect, so may appear to help a disease condition and not
the overall health of the animal and give more gentle nudges to the vital force;
c. Are good for older, more fragile animals or those with more tissue changes;
d. May have no effect in fulminating conditions (unless repeated frequently) or very vital
2. Higher potencies (30c to MM – 100,000c):
a. Are much stronger and specific in their action on the energy force of the body so
their prescribing needs to be more accurate;
b. Are for young, vital animals with functional, mental or emotional problems;
c. Are infrequently prescribed when treating chronic conditions.
d. One dose is prescribed and the response may last for many months;
e. Can cause more aggravations and even make an animal more ill if repeated too
often in chronic conditions (1 month for 200c, 1-2 months for 1M, etc.)
3. When you are not as sure of your prescription, go lower than you planned.
4. Warning: Any remedy, repeated too often, can cause an overall weakening of the animal, especially when the potencies are high (30c, 200c, 1M and above). Homeopathy is powerful, therefore must be used cautiously.
Brief examples: 14-year-old cat with renal disease and rodent ulcers – 6c QD; 2 year old cat with rodent ulcers – 200c given one time, maybe to be repeated in 1-2 months; 14 year old dog with behavior problems – 30c, one time, to be repeated, if indicated, no more than several times at no less than a 10-14 day intervals; 2 year old dog with behavior problems – 1M, given once and probably not repeated for 2 to 4 months. These are chronic disease examples – potencies for acute prescribing are different (see section on acutes).
How do these principles apply in veterinary practice, especially in a currently conventional one?
As we talked about early in the talk, sometimes treating the pathology or disease (Dexasone injection or homeopathic Apis or a combination homeopathic remedy for a bee sting reaction) will make the symptoms disappear and not further weaken the energy field. At best with this non-individualized treatment, the pathology and the symptoms resolve but can reoccur in the future. At worst, the symptoms resolve but the animal is weaker overall and develops more serious ailments. More beneficial effects are possible by treating the energy field that is causing the pathological changes that are causing the symptoms. When we can find the remedy whose energy pattern (as seen from the provings and described in the materia medicas) is very similar to the energy pattern of the individual we are treating (as seen by the symptoms of the disease and the idiosyncrasies of the patient and the historical problems), the susceptibility to become ill in this way (and often in any way) is eliminated or changed so the animal remains healthy – or becomes more and more healthy.
Animals successfully treated with homeopathy or other holistic approaches usually stay alert, agile, interactive and relatively symptom free until they have a final illness and die within a short time. This is our goal.
You are sold. You are ready to dig in really study homeopathy. Take the National Center for Homeopathy Summer School courses (for animals and people the last 2 weeks in June) (in 2005 it is hosted by PGFF – http://www.HomeopathicAnimalCare.org), then a course with one primary teacher that extends over at least 1 year (human or animal). If you want certification with the Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy (AVH), ask for their guidance for the best courses. Drs. Komisar, Pitcairn and Evans offer the year long (20 day) Professional Veterinary Homeopathy Course on several places around the continent. Continue your training by attending AVH conferences, AHVMA conferences with homeopathy talks, reading the AHVMA and AVH journals, attending advanced course by Drs. Levy, Chambreau, Loops and attending courses, workshops and conferences for treating people.
Professional Course – www.DrPitcairn.com
NCH courses – www.homeopathic.org
Dr. Chambreau’s courses – www.HealthyAnimal.com (when up) or [email protected] (now).
HOMEOPATHIC COURSES, JOURNALS, ORGANIZATIONS
Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy &n bsp; &n bsp; Journal. Annual conference.
PO Box 9280 Referral list to the public.
Wilmington, DE 19809 & Tapes and proceedings from
www.theAVH.org or www.AVHlist.org &nb sp; conferences. Certification.
866-652-1590 Accredits courses. List serves.
The National Center for Homeopathy Newsletter with animal cases.
801 North Fairfax Street, Suite 306 Summer school with animal courses
Alexandria, VA 22314 Annual conference. Directory.
703-548-7790 For tapes – 510-527-3600
Devon School of Homeopathy
The best Correspondence Course
New England School of Homeopathy &n bsp; &n bsp; Journal, classes, directory
Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic Physicians &n bsp; Great journal
Many web sites cover issues in homeopathy, both human and animal.
Go to www.theAVH.org, click on Referral list, then click on those with web site presence at AVH and some of them will have their own web sites. You will learn how people present their homeopathic practices. Be sure to get a waiver signed as AVMA recommends for all holistic modalities.
Healthy Animal’s Journal – Chambreau (http://www.HealthyAnimal’sJournal.com)
Homeopathic Care of Cats and Dogs – Don Hamilton
The Homeopathic Treatment of Small Animals Christopher Day (also Beef & Dairy Cattle)
Homeopathic Treatment of Dogs (also of Cats, of Cattle, of Horses, of Goats) and Materia
Medica George MacLeod
Homeopathic Treatment for Birds – Beryl Chapman
Beyond Flat Earth Medicine – Tim Dooley – 619-299-1140 The BEST intro. Buy for each client.
The Science of Homeopathy-George Vithoulkas A comprehensive overview
Homeopathy: Medicine for the 21st Century-Dana Ullman – An overview
Boerike’s Materia Medica and Repertory Tapes:
The Organon -Hahnemann From the master’s mouth. A must for the serious student. Best
edition is by O’Reilly and costs more but is very readable, better translated and more
informative than the Kunzli edition.
Lectures on Homeopathic Philosophy – James Kent
Chronic Diseases – Hahnemann & Lesser Writings Kent. More advanced reading.
Kent’s Repertory – The most popular index of symptoms & affordable.
Complete, Synthesis or Kunzli’s Repertory – MODERN repertories. Expanded Kent,
Dictionary of Homeopathic Medical Terminology – Yasgur – defines those funny words.
Guiding Symptoms to our Materia Medica – Constantine Herring 10 volumes
Clarke’s Dictionary of Materia Medica 3 volumes
Handbook of Materia Medica and Homeopathic Therapeutics – H.C. Allen 1 vol.
And lots more.
Book sources – Homeopathic Education Service – www.homeopathic.com 800-359-9051
Minimum Price Books – www.minimum.com 800-663-8272
SUBTLE SIGNS OF ILL HEALTH
Most health problems are the result of an underlying energy imbalance, made worse from poor diet and vaccination. They are rarely acute diseases (except injuries). Therefore, you may find that the problem does not clear up as you expect or it recurs. If so, you are dealing with an underlying predisposition to illness, and these clues to underlying ill health will help you select a remedy and monitor the results. As we cure animals of “disease”, we find that certain other “NORMAL” things go away, too. Do not be satisfied until most of the following symptoms are gone. In young, apparently healthy animals, these apparently “normal” problems may be the only indications to start treatment. This is only the beginning of a list – as more animals are cured we will find new levels of health.
DOGS AND CATS
SKIN: doggy smell; attracts fleas a lot; dry, oily, lack-luster coat; excessive shedding; not grooming, ear problems – waxy, oily, itchy, recurrent mites; eye discharge, tearing, or matter in corner of eyes; raised third eyelid; spots appearing on iris; “freckles” appearing on face;
whiskers falling out; fragile, thickened, distorted claws that are painful or sensitive to trim.
BEHAVIOR: Fears (of loud noises, thunder, wind, people, animals, life); too timid; too rough or aggressive (even at play); too hard to train; barks too much and too long; suspicious nature; biting when petted too long; hysteria when restrained; clumsy; indolent; licking or sucking things or people too much; not using litter box or not covering stool.
DIGESTIVE: Bad breath; tarter accumulation; loss of teeth; poor appetite; craving weird things (rubber bands, plastic, dirt, cat litter, paper, dogs eating dog or cat stools, rocks, sticks…); sensitivity to milk; thirst – a super healthy cat on non dry food will drink at most once a week; red gum line; vomiting often, even hairballs more than a few times a year; mucous on stools; tendency to diarrhea with least change of diet; obesity; anal gland problems; recurrent worms.
STIFFNESS when getting up, early hip dysplasia; tires easily in hot or cold weather; can no longer jump up on counters, or go up or down steps.
TEMPERATURE: Low grade fevers – Normal for healthy cats and dogs is 100-101.5.
AGE & REPRODUCTION: Should live a long life (Shepherds 17 years, Danes 12, cats 24). should be able conceive easily, deliver normally, and not pass on “genetic breed” problems.
MIND: cribbing and/or weaving; pen/stall walking; flank sucking; over-reactive; fearful, territorial or aggressive; Fears of loud noises, slightest noises, narrow spaces.
SKIN, RESPIRATORY: puffy around eyes; chronic conjunctivitis; dull eyes; “foal snots”; asthma; sweat on upper body but not lower, sticky sweat, unpleasant odor, dry and/or dull hair coat, dry skin, poor-healing wounds, greasy skin on face.
STOMACH: foul breath, fissures at corners of mouth, salivation from clover, hollow seeming teeth, hard to float, loose teeth at under 20 years old, coprophagia/pica, craves salt, fussy eating, intolerant to fat, repeated colics, sensitivity to weather changes with GIT signs, excessively susceptible to parasites, potbellied foals, distended abdomen (hay belly) in adults, rectum tears easily when palpated, hard dry fecal balls.
EXTREMITIES: warm up very slowly; stiff muscles; tie up if not warmed up; swollen legs: hot or cold – may or may not go down with exercise; unable to lift back feet; unable to balance on three legs, bad odor without pathology, excessive moisture in feet, sensitive to hammering in nails
GENERALITIES: poor exercise tolerance; fat deposits- cresty necks, around tail head, top of croup; disturbed by temperature changes; offensive odors; not wanting to be touched, groomed.
How would they be in the wild? Is this really health? Learn the normals and be open for more health.
Rabbits – red line, black teeth, eating roots.
An internationally known homeopathic veterinarian, Christina Chambreau is committed to the idea that everyone in the world needs to learn about the holistic approach to health for their animals and themselves. She is a founder of the Academy Of Veterinary Homeopathy and is on the faculty of the National Center for Homeopathy Summer School. Christina’s goal in her practice, teaching all over the continent, her work with the Veterinary Advice Line and The Hunger Project are to help create a healthy, peaceful world. For classes to learn more, contact Dr. Christina Chambreau at [email protected] or by phone at: 410-771-4968