I just saw my client yesterday who several months ago had felt somewhat cornered to give her soul-mate dog the best care. Because of limited resources, she scheduled a visit with a clinic that provided a free first-time vet exam for the opened blisters on her dog's belly. During that appointment it became obvious the blisters were occurring from a longer standing problem, but expensive diagnostics were needed to confirm the likely disease and appropriate treatment. The moments in the exam room were overwhelmingly difficult once the bad news was explained. So many thoughts at once – her dog likely had Cushings, a disabling disease that is expensive to treat with no guarantee and will shorten his life significantly. Was this her only option, was it really true, could it be anything else, is the testing necessary? He didn't even really seem that sick, he was only occasionally lethargic for brief periods. She did agree to some of the testing, mostly out of guilt, because she didn't know what else to do and felt so much pressure during those very overwhelming moments to do the best thing...(read more)
After several months her dog began showing more progressive decline, so an end of life decision was the primary focus at our appointment. I charge for my time so further questions were looming – could her dog benefit from more holistic treatment, did she have enough resources now to find out, and would she be able to give him the bedside care he may need with holistic treatment? Or did we need to let him go for so many more reasons than just his health?
We took it step by step to use her resources wisely. Within 15 minutes I was able to question her fully, complete a comprehensive physical exam and determine that indeed he had enough vitality and will power (and so did she) to warrant further treatment. I let her know I could complete an extensive treatment protocol in about 45 minutes total and she agreed she had resources to cover costs. We would not need to say goodbye just yet, hooray!
I formulated a somewhat extensive supplement protocol (a combination powder supplement of about 20 different types of plant and animal tissue to support affected organ systems – adrenal, thyroid, pituitary gland, immune, skin and circulatory. We added a chlorophyll gel cap, vitamin E, a fatty acid and a tincture to re-establish his acid-base balance). This comprehensive approach will energetically improve or hopefully match the deficiencies this little dog is experiencing.
Patience is also necessary – it will take quite a bit of time for full improvement. It starts immediately but is usually slow. Disease at this depth is acquired over a lifetime or at least many months. The body has a tremendous capacity to stay balanced despite nutritional deficiencies or toxin exposures that happen slowly over time. Once symptoms become even slightly apparent, the condition has likely been going on for much longer. Overall, treatment usually takes 3 to 12 months.
We will monitor this dog closely over the next 1 to 2 weeks, especially as he slowly begins the powder, gel caps and tincture. Quality of life is essential. I want to be sure he continues to like his food with all the added supplements and is not experiencing any adverse effects. I will continue to periodically update how he progresses.
Because quality of life is so important, we work hard for always seeing improvement. If not, I re-evaluate what is needed. Overall the majority of my patients improve 50 to 70%. Even very sick patients will often improve that much just for a few days and then decide to let go.
I have also found that my patients seem more ready to let go when the time comes. A general decline is often more evident and they appear more ready to be done. And they have had so many quality days in between.
If you have a pet with a chronic condition, have questions about quality of life or would like a different option or perspective, we would love to meet you and share what we know. My approach to wellness and healing starts with you – the “owner” (who owns who?). I carefully listen to your stories and history because you know your pet best and can share. And then from your pet – they tell me so much through behavior, demeanor and the physical exam. Their bodies are designed to be well. I work with you to share from my education and experience. We work together to provide support for your pet that is so different from the more traditional approach of expensive diagnostics, pharmaceuticals, procedures and surgeries. These have their place, but a complementary approach may work best to achieve harmony and balance.