By Cas Peace
I wonder how many dog owners are aware of the wide variety of fantastic complementary therapies that are available to improve their pets’ lives? I guess most of us have heard of hydrotherapy (swimming for dogs) but did you know that therapies like acupuncture, laser treatment, physiotherapy, and Tellington TTouch can also have a dramatic effect on many of the health issues or behavioural problems our pets experience? Even basic training can be tremendously enhanced, helping your pet to become happier and healthier.
Let me illustrate by telling you about one very special dog. Daisy was a beautiful ten-year-old Dalmatian, full of life and love. When tests to investigate an intermittent limp showed she had disc disease, we couldn’t believe it. Worse was to come when her ventral slot operation – which was supposed to ease her symptoms – failed. Daisy became a virtual paraplegic and the specialist advised euthanasia. However, Daisy didn’t want to die and we vowed to do everything we could to help her.
We were fortunate in having a forward-thinking veterinarian whose practice included a hydrotherapy unit, run by a McTimoney animal chiropractor. Over the ensuing months, Daisy benefited from regular hydrotherapy sessions which strengthened her muscles and encouraged her to use her legs. Laser treatments helped heal the surgical incision and improved the underlying muscles. Acupuncture stimulated her nerves and muscles, and Tellington TTouch massage proved most valuable for reawakening nerves, strengthening the bond between us, and ensuring Daisy stayed comfortable and stimulated. We saw improvements daily, and Daisy quickly regained her interest in life. Our efforts were eventually rewarded when Daisy was finally able to walk again.
Daisy’s case was extreme, but complementary therapies can be used for so many different conditions. Hydrotherapy is a fantastic way of gently exercising pets recovering from surgery, or with congenital mobility problems. Laser treatment can be used for pain relief and healing. Acupuncture can ease chronic pain and even treat symptoms such as cystitis in cats. Tellington TTouch is an almost magical method of touching animals and can produce truly amazing results. It has been used to modify dangerous behaviours, calm stressed animals; even for something as simple as basic training. It is also highly effective when used on rescue animals which have been abused, are fearful, or maladjusted.
My experience with Daisy was so life changing that I wrote a book about her. For the Love of Daisy is intended to show how devotion, determination, and a bit of invention can overcome the darkest of situations. The book contains links to each of the practitioners who helped Daisy, but there many sites where you can find such help, both in the US and the UK.
Daisy is sadly no longer with us, and so now I have two much-loved rescue Lurchers, Milly and Milo.
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Those of you who like reading fantasy might also like to know that King’s Envoy, the first novel in my fantasy series Artesans of Albia, will be published by Rhemalda Publishing on August 15th 2011.