How to Focus on Holistic Health For Your Pet | PetFirst
Pet Care & Health

How to Focus on Holistic Health For Your Pet

by PetFirst Pet Insurance
3 months ago

You might think holistic health is just for humans, but the principles of holistic health can be applied to your pets, too — and they can have big benefits for your furry friends. Let’s break down holistic health for pets a little further and explore exactly how it works. 

What Is Holistic Health? 

Holistic health is an approach to medicine, and to life in general, that emphasizes how the mind, body, and spirit are all connected. For instance, holistic medicine practitioners believe that if you’re stressed or feeling negative emotions, that can have a big impact on your physical health.  

If you go to a holistic doctor with a complaint, the doctor isn’t just going to prescribe medicine and send you to the pharmacy — instead, they’ll ask questions about everything happening in your life right now (emotional issues, sleep habits, diet, etc). They may still prescribe drugs, but they’re also going to give you advice on improving your overall lifestyle, which will lead to improving your health. Holistic medicine gets to the root cause of an issue instead of just slapping a Band-Aid on the symptoms. 

What Does Holistic Health Look Like For Pets? 

Did you know you can actually take your pet to a holistic vet? Just like holistic doctors for humans, holistic vets do prescribe medicines, but they also use alternative treatments. Pets WebMD gives the following list of treatments holistic vets might utilize:  

  • Acupuncture: Acupuncture relieves pain and can help with arthritis, muscle spasms, or back pain. 
  • Chiropractic treatment: This type of treatment can also relieve pain by promoting spinal alignment.
  • Massage: Massages improve blood flow, help with anxiety, and reduce swelling — and plus, pets love them! 
  • Aromatherapy: The scent of natural oils relieves stress and anxiety. 
  • Nutrition: Holistic vets might make changes to your pet’s diet to reduce inflammation and lower the risk of chronic disease. 
  • Herbs: Herbs such as chamomile and valerian can have a calming effect, but only if a vet prescribes them; don’t give your dog herbal formulas at home.  

Can You Do Holistic Medicine At Home? 

It’s best to speak with a certified holistic veterinarian first. Once they’ve looked at your pet and given you their opinion, ask about at-home treatments. Your vet may show you how to do some massage techniques or recommend a new diet. After you’ve gotten advice from your vet, you may be able to utilize some holistic medicine techniques at home.  

One easy thing you can do that doesn’t require vet approval is to begin keeping a journal. Record when and how much your pet eats and sleeps; make a note of how much energy they seem to have and any health issues that crop up. Over time, this can help you pick out trends and determine what environmental factors might be causing certain health problems. 

Is Holistic Medicine Safe? 

Holistic medicine does have some degree of risk, but so does almost every treatment or medicine. If you only follow treatments laid out by a certified holistic veterinarian, holistic medicine will most likely be safe for your pet.  

The best thing to do for your pet is to focus on prevention, making holistic health a priority from the very beginning so you ideally won’t have to worry about treatment. Feed your pet good food and freshwater; provide them with plenty of exercises, and make sure their environment is free of any and all toxins. 

Is Holistic Medicine Expensive? 

Holistic vets can be expensive — but so can medical treatments from traditional vets. At the end of the day, holistic medicine is as expensive as you choose to make it. You can do acupuncture and massage and buy the most expensive type of food for your pet; just ask your vet what treatment and cost options they offer. Finally, by providing your pet with lots of love, you can help create an environment where they can thrive — and that doesn’t cost a cent.  

PetFirst covers many holistic treatments, which is another way to help lower the cost of holistic medicine for pets — we reimburse for alternative therapies as long as the treatment is performed by a licensed vet and is for a condition that’s covered. Get a free quote today! 

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