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Distemper and Arthritis help

Follow the blog with Q & A in Animal Wellness magazine (if you want your own subscription – use CCDVM code for a discount).

This week’s questions are about distemper and building health in an arthritic dog.


Q.  Have you known any puppies to survive distemper? And if so, what homeopathic medicine was used? Any information on distemper is appreciated. Thank you!

A.  Yes, puppies treated holistically have definitely survived distemper. Even puppies supported merely with IV fluids and symptomatic drugs have survived distemper, some with and some without residual health problems. Juliette de Baircle Levy ran a distemper clinic in London in the late 1930s where she cured hundreds of dogs with fasting, herbs and a natural diet.

While distemper is a virulent virus and can certainly kill puppies quickly, there are many holistic approaches that can support them in surviving.

First, every person needs to become attuned to Reiki (or one of the other energetic healers – Quantum touch, reconnective therapy, etc). When any illness is noted, even one of the Early Warning Signs of Internal Imbalance begin Reiki. If a litter of puppies is found with distemper, start Reiki immediately.

Second, every person with animals needs to have Rescue Remedy and begin using it with the appearance of any symptoms.

Distemper is a fulminant disease, so the best success will be when you are also working with a veterinarian trained in Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM), homeopathy or botanical medicine.  They can individualize the treatment of each puppy to maximize the chance of success.

A list of the symptoms shown by each puppy are listed and either a separate remedy is given for each one, or a “genus epidemicus” remedy that matches most puppies’ symptoms is given to all, then individual remedies can be given. Some homeopaths find that Distemperinum, a nosode, is useful when they cannot find the simillimum.

Common symptoms of distemper in all phases include:  eye and nose discharge, loss of appetite, fevers, coughing, pneumonia, vomiting, diarrhea, calluses on the nose and foot pads. The end stage symptoms can be more difficult to cure, but still possible – convulsions, tremors and snapping of the jaws.

If one puppy with a creamy yellow nose and eye discharge was not thirsty, wanted lots of cuddling and petting and preferred to be in a cool place, Pulsatilla may help.

If another puppy had thinner discharges from the nose and eye that made the skin raw (or was having diarrhea and vomiting) and they were very chilly, restless and fearful, Arsenicum album may be chosen.

If a puppy loved to be petted, startled with loud noises and had some blood tinges in their diarrhea and vomiting, or phlegm from coughing, they may respond best to Phosphorus.

As you can see, almost any homeopathic remedy could be needed, so you need training in selecting the symptoms to find the best remedy, then training and experience to understand the response to the remedy.

Dr. Chambreau will begin teaching a 7 day class in Calgary, Alberta starting October 26 and you can still register []

Q.  Question regarding herbal remedies and correct dosing. I have a 28 lbs sheltie who has the start of arthritis.  I am working on getting his weight down by using a combination of high protein, low fat, mod carbs & a high protein, low carb, higher fat diet. My question is, I hate giving him Medicam when he is really sore, and I would rather give him an herbal remedy for the inflammation. I’ve read that White Willow Bark is a good anti-inflammatory but I am really unsure of the correct dosage and how often to give it to him. I am trying to get him back to basics, both for food and for the arthritis and any future ailments that may occur in the future.

A. Good for you, for wanting to treat this current ailment in a way that prevents future problems. The key for everyone is to see any ailment (even little niggling ones like stool eating, hairball vomiting, hip dysplasia or early arthritis) as a clue of a vibrational imbalance. Since most dogs and cats who are not yet getting holistic treatments have some of these Early Warning Signs of Internal Imbalance, everyone can begin with these steps.

First, as you are doing, feed the best, which is usually a fresh food diet. Some dogs stop resolve early arthritis merely by stopping commercial foods. Others need fine tuning of the diet. Reading books and articles on Chinese medicine food therapy may individualize the diet to use specific meats or cooked rather than raw. Reading books on holistic care for animals, especially the newer raw feeding guides, or consulting with veterinarians trained in using food as a medicine can help your dogs regain health.

Second, eliminate toxins in your pets’ lives – in the home, from EMF, from vaccines (only Rabies to comply with the laws, in most places) and flea and tick products. These can weaken the immune system and sometimes actually cause symptoms. Then begin to find supplements to generally build health. You can try one supplement at a time and evaluate its benefit. Then add in a different supplement or treatment.

Finally, begin to use one of the many healing modalities yourself or work with professionals so that the current symptoms resolve in a way to prevent future problems. All treatments (drugs or holistic) can deeply cure, but can also merely help temporarily or even eliminate the current symptom while causing more serious ailments.

One of the best treatments to relieve the arthritic pain is Reiki, which is totally safe. One problem with giving a “pain killer” like Medicam is they have no pain, so then over-do. Even some of the herbal treatments could have that effect, but Reiki will be healing the tissue along with removing the pain. Also totally safe are flower essences, like readily available Rescue Remedy. Put 4 drops in an ounce of water and give a few drops as often as needed for pain relief. Many companies make totally safe arthritis combination formulas (Spirit Essences, Green Hope Farms, Anaflora and more).

Essential supplements for arthritis include Vitamin C (500 mg daily for your dog), Fish oil supplements and glucosamine/chondroitin supplements.

White Willow has analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects so it is used for pain of arthritis. To get the same effect as aspirin (which was original made from White Willow) you would need huge doses. Most capsules are 400 mg and your dog could have 2 – 4 per day. Do not give it along with any other NSAID.

They also recommend topical Cayenne, (Wynn and Schoen – complementary and Alternative Veterinary Medicine). Tilford’s Herbs for Pets devotes several pages to arthritis, including many approaches to generally heal the tissues rather than merely stopping the pain. While yucca, licorice, alfalfa and willow bark are mentioned for pain, he prefers the totally safe alfalfa to relieve arthritic pain. It can be used safely in the food as a daily supplement, and increased during increased pain.  Dosage for your dog would be ¼ to ½ teaspoons of the powdered alfalfa.


By |2013-10-22T07:50:54+00:00October 22nd, 2013|Healthy Animal's Journal|0 Comments

About the Author:

Christina Chambreau, DVM, graduated from the University of Georgia Veterinary College in 1980 and has had a Homeopathic Veterinary Practice since 1988. She is co-founder and was Chair for the Academy of Veterinary homeopathy. She is the author of Healthy Animal’s Journal: What You Can Do to Have Your Dog or Cat Live a Long and Healthy Life; Healthy Dog Journal ebook; Fleas Be Gone kindle; and co-author of Tutorial and Workbook for the Homeopathic Repertory and How to Have a Stress Free Wedding and Live Happily Ever After. She has written and is quoted in many magazines. She lectures at veterinary conferences around the world. She speaks and gives classes for animal enthusiasts and practitioners. She is committed to empowering people to heal their animals and themselves in a way that heals the planet.

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