“Diabolo” was a lovely Irish setter, so nice that anybody meeting him would want to have such a dog. Sound, cunning, with fiery red shining fur and a loving temper, he was the joy of his mistress, a young 25-five-year old lady. He shared his heart between her and her parents. A friend of mine, a human practitioner, was their family doctor and introduced them to me.
The first time I saw him, he had lost his appetite two or three days before. Coming into my office, he first hesitated a little, like many dogs going to the vet (smell of remedies and disinfectant, remembrance of past injections?) but came running, as soon as I called him, for a friendly lick, expecting to be stroked in return.
His eyes were yellow and the liver was somewhat swollen. When questioned, his owners told me that he was in a very bad mood since his young and beloved mistress went away, following her boyfriend to live in town in a small apartment where dogs are not allowed. Before this, Diabolo knew precisely when the young lady was coming home from work, no matter at what time. He would wait for her at the door.
It looked as if Diabolo was crying out loud: “I need remedy “A”. I immediately gave him 3 granules of “A” MK ; The same evening he was knocked down. Two days later he was fit again. Even the jaundice had disappeared.
A little more than 2 months later, I saw Diabolo again, for a relapse. Some more granules of “A” XMK had the same wonderful effect.
Third consultation: a few months later
This time, the dog’s behaviour was completely different. The dog who greeted me with a joyful paw, was now crawling in, wretched, passing the doorstep without even sniffing the usually interesting odors other dogs had left behind. He did not refuse contact, but he seemed to be somewhere else. He did not show any appetite, his belly was slightly bloated with borborygmus. He had profuse diarrhoea with undigested stuff. Sometimes he even urinated on his couch, after which he looked lost and ashamed. His urine was copious and clear. Whenever he did it, the mother would shout: “How does he manage to pee that much?”… and she would pour a torrent of insults over the poor dog.
This began after a visit of the daughter, the actual owner of Diabolo. When she came over, it often ended with a quarrel between mother and daughter. My friend, the family doctor, told me that the mother was a severe dictatorial woman, and that the father generally didn’t say anything, so as to remain at peace. The daughter had gone away to live a life of her own with her boyfriend. Since this event, the disputes at home became increasingly worse and the dog suffered from it too.
A unique dose of remedy “B” 15 CH allowed Diabolo to recover, enjoy life and keep his couch clean.
Five weeks later: everything was going the wrong way, once more. But this time, the dog’s indifference was much more obvious. He looked away, turned to the corner and didn’t want to see us. He used to be so friendly, but didn’t follow people anymore and remained alone in his corner. He once more had diarrhoea but controlled his profuse and watery stools much better. He showed tenesmus after defecation. The liver was again sensitive to touch. He vomited bile with much difficulty and noise. One got the impression that Diabolo, with this new behaviour wanted to say: “I cannot go on like this. I give up. Just leave me in peace.”
Once more, the behaviour had changed. Remedy “C” in some globules of 30 CH brought relief, but the dog was now very skinny and took longer to recover. The owners had waited over a week before coming again: they had given remedies “A” and “B” but with no result.
Fifth consultation : five weeks later
I saw Diabolo once more. He was refusing everything, did not eat at all and was emaciated. He looked like an old, very tired dog, and this time greeted me with a slow-wagging tail. His fur was still the same shining colour, but the dog reeked an awful odour. The long hairs of his hind legs were stuck together with a cadaverous stinking, watery stool. He drank very often, in small sips, “as if he wanted to moisten his mucous membranes” said the mother but he vomited it immediately. During the day he slept, leaning closely to the radiator but during the night he stayed up and roamed about, leaving dirty tracks in the house. As a matter of fact, this did not improve the family atmosphere…
This cadaverous smelling watery diarrhoea, this seeking for warmth, added to restlessness at night with changing of beds, thirst for small quantities of water and his vomiting immediately after drinking, were all new symptoms.
The situation has changed considerably! A single dose of remedy “D” 30 CH and my dog friend got markedly better for about a fortnight!
Follow up and end
A month later, my friend the doctor told me that my dog friend Diabolo was dead. Once more the family atmosphere had gotten worse, with a bad tantrum to the scale of a hurricane-like thunderstorm. Every homeopath knows that some people can suffer badly from thunderstorm! The poor dog reacted to this harmful atmosphere by being sick before dying. But always, in his own way, when bearing his cross he kept a bright eye and shining red fur, just as to say: “But I love life!”.
I still find this succession of remedies very impressive, when looking at their moral nucleus:
“A” = Phosphorus: “Please, love me as much as I love you!”.
“B” = Phosphoric acid: “I cannot go on like this. I am morally exhausted!”. Phosphoric acid is the white ash that remains when Phosphor has burnt out. It is white like the diarrhoea, urine or blood with anaemia.
“C” = Sepia: “Now it’s enough. I can’t bear it anymore; leave me alone!”. After reading Margaret Tyler’s “Portraits of homeopathic remedies” I had learned that Phosphorus and Sepia are closely related.
“D” = Arsenicum album: “Please, which is the closest way to the graveyard?”
Later on, my friend, the doctor told me that the headmistress was now suffering from an auto-immune sickness and could not even stand by herself. Too often the dog or the pet takes the role of an emotional sponge and is the one who suffers from the family atmosphere, to the extent that this pet often needs the same Simillimum as her/his beloved owner.
For those who are used to working with repertory, I add the four possible repertorisations (MacRepertory Universale V)
Remedy ” A ” : Phosphorus
Mind; P; CLAIRVOYANCE (59)
Mind; P; AFFECTIONATE (59) [Returns affection (3) : Phos., lsd., ulm-c.]
Eyes; P; DISCOLORATION; Yellow (107)
Remedy ” B ” : Phosphoric acidum
Generalities; P; WEAKNESS; Emotions, after depressing (3)
Mind; P; GRIEF; Silent (30)
Mind; P; INDIFFERENCE, apathy; Everything, to (122)
Remedy ” C ” : Sepia
Mind; P; COMPANY; Aversion to, agg.; avoids the sight of people (23)
Stomach; P; PAIN; Vomiting; agg. (10)
Abdomen; P; PAIN; Liver; touch agg. (34)
Remedy ” D ” : Arsenicum album
Mind; P; RESTLESSNESS, nervousness; Drive him out of bed; wants to go from one bed to another (15)
Face; P; EXPRESSION; Distressed
Stomach; P; VOMITING; General; drinking; agg.; immediately after (13)
Stool; P; ODOR; Cadaverous (24)