The number of Americans seeking holistic care for their pets is on the rise as more people recognize the importance of whole pet health care. With August 30 being National Holistic Pet Day, many owners are considering if holistic pet care is right for their dogs or cats.

Holistic pet care takes into account the entire pet, including personality and environment, in addition to any physical symptoms. According to Susan Wagner, DVM, MS, DACVIM (Neurology), an Integrative Medicine doctor for MedVet Medical & Cancer Centers for Pets, “Holistic pet care is also referred to as integrative veterinary medicine. Integrative veterinary medicine incorporates well-studied and effective complementary and alternative therapies into mainstream medical practice. Integrative medicine practitioner-client partnerships agree upon both conventional and alternative treatments in order to enhance the patient’s natural healing potential.”

Some holistic approaches include laser therapy to aid in pain relief and inflammation reduction, rehabilitation for reconditioning, chiropractic care to help restore spinal health, nutritional supplements, and Healing Touch for Animals® to promote stress reduction, a healthy immune system, and enhancement of the pet’s innate ability to heal.

“Pet owners are looking for alternatives to traditional medications to reduce their pets’ pain and increase their pets’ mobility and function,” says Wagner. “It is not a substitute for traditional medical treatments but a great complement to these therapies. Holistic therapies can often reduce medication dosages, decrease pain, and increase the speed of healing or return of function.”

The integrative medicine team at MedVet works in partnership with primary care veterinarians and other MedVet specialties to maximize the opportunity for full recovery and improved quality of life for patients recovering from a variety of conditions including orthopedic, neurologic, and oncologic disease. MedVet is uniquely suited to deliver a full spectrum of non- invasive integrative therapies backed by years of practical experience and a well-rounded team of doctors and technicians.

If your dog or cat has symptoms of pain or decreased mobility, or you would like more information on holistic pet therapies, discuss it with your family veterinarian. They may provide holistic options at their practice or can refer you to a specialist in your area.

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