Homeopathy

Homeopathy for Animals

With a brief account of Nosodes

Veterinary Homeopathy is offered at the AVMC

Case Histories (various therapies)

The Homeopathic Vet

FAQ Homeopathy

Equine HomeopathyCanine HomeopathyFeline Homeopathy

Some information sheets, articles etc. around the subject of homeopathy and veterinary homeopathy:

Care and Administration of Homeopathic RemediesWhy Use Homeopathy?Homeopathy for the Newborn and Unborn
What to Expect from the Homeopathic ConsultationHomeopathy for the AgedFirst-Aid Homeopathy
Responsible use of HomeopathyResearchDefinitions in Homeopathy
Therapeutic AggravationOutcome StudyHering’s Law
The Holistic VetThe Homeopathic VetNosodes
Prejudice against Homeopathy

History

Homeopathy (also spelled: homoeopathy, homœopathy) is a truly holistic therapy and uses the principle discovered and developed during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries by Dr Samuel Hahnemann, in Saxony. He was the son of a Meissen (Meißen) porcelain painter and an extremely advanced and intelligent child. He went on to become an accomplished linguist, chemist, physician and scientist, contributing a great deal more to medicine than homeopathy alone.

In literal terms, the name ‘homeopathy’ means ‘similar to the disease’ or the treatment of disease using a substance which has the power to provoke similar symptoms when administered to a healthy body. What a substance can ’cause’ or ‘provoke’ in health, it can be used to cure in disease. The symptoms that a substance can induce are discovered by means of a ‘proving’ (Prüfung) – a test on healthy human beings. Hahnemann later developed the extreme dilutions (potencies) which remain, to this day, a controversial area of homeopathic practice (see Prejudice).

In circa 1813, in Leipzig, Hahnemann lectured on the use of his medical system in animals. He stressed that the principles were the same as in humans and these principles guide homeopathic vets to this day.

Hahnemann’s writings and teachings were fundamentally truly holistic in practice and methodology and have stood the test of time. Hahnemann’s work was way in advance of what was on offer at the time and, if truth were told, ahead of much of today’s non-holistic (reductionist) thinking.

Hahnemann’s writings and teachings were fundamentally truly holistic in practice and methodology and have stood the test of time. Hahnemann’s work was way in advance of what was on offer at the time and, if truth were told, ahead of much of today’s non-holistic (reductionist) thinking.

Boenninghausen continued to develop animal homeopathy (veterinary homeopathy), on his extensive estate in Westphalia. Numerous authors have kept the practice alive until, in modern times in the UK, George Macleod (1912 – 1995) was a very well-known veterinary homeopath and author.

In 1982 the British Association of Homœopathic Veterinary Surgeons (homoeopathic veterinary surgeons – BAHVS) was formed, as a focus for the interest expressed by homeopathic vets and those vets who might wish to know a little more about homeopathic veterinary medicine. In 1984, veterinary courses commenced at the Royal London Homœopathic Hospital, under the auspices of the Faculty of Homeopathy. In April 1986, the International Association for Veterinary Homeopathy (IAVH) was founded in Luxembourg. Among other work, this organisation has produced a veterinary materia medica. The first veterinary qualification in the world (VetMFHom) was awarded by the Faculty of Homeopathy in 1987. That organisation created the post of Veterinary Dean in 1988, in order to oversee education and examinations in veterinary homeopathy and, in 1991, the first Veterinary Fellow of the Faculty (VetFFHom) was elected. In 2001, the first examination and qualification in basic (first-year) homeopathy was established [LFHom(Vet)]. It was also the year of the emergence of the first veterinary repertory.

Evolution of Homeopathy and Veterinary Homeopathy

From its very small beginnings, homeopathy was developed very extensively by Hahnemann, who wrote many books on the subject. The journey of personal development taken by Hahnemann makes very good reading. It is a real example of science-by-observation, analysed by his extremely acute mind. Hahnemann even lectured on the use of homeopathy in animals (veterinary homeopathy) in Leipzig in c1813. His ‘Organon of Rational Medicine’ is a must-read for any would-be scientist or philosopher. It is also valuable for any aspiring physician or vet and it serves as the basic model for the modern-day homeopathic physician or homeopathic vet.

Homeopathy and veterinary homeopathy did not stop developing with Hahnemann’s death, however and followed various slightly divergent paths. So-called ‘classical homeopathy’, developed around the notion of giving a single remedy, is based on the totality of signs. Using multiple remedies (called ‘complexes’), often with a ‘clinical indication’, also developed widely, especially in Germany and France. Some practitioners like to use low potencies, some prefer high potencies. At the AVMC, we strive to use the best of all available methodologies, to suit the individual case presented, rather than to align with any single practice or ideology.

Hahnemann’s original ideas on ‘miasms’ (applicable in chronic disease analysis and a massive contribution to our understanding of chronic disease) have been extended by some more modern authors. The wide range of medicines (pharmacopoeia) left by Hahnemann has grown over the years, as has our understanding of it. At the AVMC, we have developed several new medicines ourselves.

The list of available medicines now runs into several thousand, making ways of grouping remedies vital to our ability to comprehend and use them to best advantage. The ‘miasmatic’ approach is of value in this, as is grouping remedies according to source materials (e.g. Kingdoms, Orders and Families). The teaching of homeopathy has developed accordingly and the homeopathic vet has at his or her disposal a vast homeopathic capability.

While the homeopathy and veterinary homeopathy of today is highly developed from Hahnemann’s original, with much greater scope, it has retained its strictly patient-centred approach and is used, to the best of our ability, to bring the patient back to health as rapidly, gently and completely as possible. Homeopathy differs from conventional drug medicine in that it acts as a healing stimulus (holistic cure), rather than attempting directly to counteract symptoms. The only absolute limit of capability is that imposed by the patient’s body and healing ability. Those who claim efficacy in every case are, therefore, blinding themselves to the truth. Nonetheless, the vast majority of past patients have proved themselves capable of responding.

Practical Application

“It’s hard to remember Daisy as the very poorly kitten I brought to see you in 2003 – I wish you could see her now – fitter and livelier than all our other cats put together!” (Case report)

Homeopathy, as practiced by a genuine homeopathic vet, is a truly holistic therapy, working with mind and body in the context of the patient’s environment and lifestyle and has been used in animals for at about 200 years. All species and all types of animals respond, from cats and dogs to farm animals, from horses and ponies to wild animals, from buffalo to goats, from birds and reptiles to fish. Organic farmers rely upon it as an effective, safe medicine which does not give rise to drug residues in meat, milk or eggs. Conventional farmers also make use of its benefits. Among its other benefits, of especial importance in farmed animals (food animals), is the fact that it cannot provoke ‘antibiotic resistance‘ in bacterial populations (the EU appears to have caught onto this in recent times, planning in 2011 to make available 2 million euros for research into farm homeopathy and phytotherapy, especially with antibiotic usage and bacterial resistance in mind). Furthermore, competition horses and dogs can be given homeopathy without risk of falling foul of competition ‘doping’ rules. While the use of veterinary homeopathy can clearly optimise physical appearance and performance, by improving health, it cannot produce ‘supernormal’ performance, in the way that a drug can.

Homeopathic medicines (homoeopathic medicines) are selected according to their ability to stimulate natural healing processes. The body dictates the reaction. Sometimes, usually heralding a good response, there may be a temporary ‘therapeutic aggravation’ of local or superficial symptoms. This is explained on a dedicated page on aggravations and sometimes known as ‘worse before better‘. Another common finding is Hering’s Law of Cure.

The homeopathic consultation process (homoeopathic consultation process) is more complex than the usual veterinary consultation. Homeopathic vets (homoeopathic vets) may allow a long time, depending upon the complaint from which the patient suffers. It involves the homeopathic vet in discovering a great deal of information, not just from clinical examination but also from the ‘owner’. Likely questions may include details of background, lifestyle, environment, demeanour, character, likes, dislikes, fears, diet, household & family details and responses to various external influences. Homeopathic principles demand a rigorous, meticulous and detailed approach by a homeopathic vet to any patient’s problem, based on holistic practice. Anyone aspiring to be a homeopathic vet has also to embrace a deep understanding of holistic principles.

The AVMC accepts veterinary homeopathic referrals (veterinary homeopathy referrals)

In individual animals, experience shows that many chronic and refractory diseases can respond, where conventional medication may have failed. Injuries and acute illnesses also respond. In groups, herds or flocks of animals, in-water medication can treat large numbers of animals safely, easily, cheaply and effectively.


 

A selection of the type of conditions that are presented to the AVMC for homeopathic veterinary treatment are:

Dogs homeopathy: abscesses, allergic bowel disorders, allergic skin disorders, allergy, alopecia, anaemia, anal gland problems, arthritis, atopy, auto-immunity (autoimmunity), behavioural problems, bloat, bloating, campylobacter, cancer, canine epilepsy, canine wobbler, CDRM, cardiac failure, cervical spondylopathy, chronic cough, chronic diarrhoea, colitis, corneal ulcer, cruciate ligament damage (anterior cruciate), cryptosporidia, Cushings Disease (Cushing’s), cystitis, dermatitis, disc disease, DJD, dry eye (keratitis sicca), eczema, elbow dysplasia, encephalitis, eosinophilic myositis, fading puppy syndrome, heart disease, hip dysplasia, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), interdigital cysts, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), itchy dog, joint ill, lameness, lick granuloma, liver problems, meningitis, non-healing fractures (non-union fracture), non-healing wounds, OCD, ophthalmia, otitis (ear problems), pain control, paralysis, poor condition, pruritus, pyoderma, ruptured cruciate ligament, sinusitis, spondylitis – spondylosis, sprain, urticaria, tendon and ligament injuries, ununited anconeal process, vaccination problems, vestibular syndrome (canine stroke), wobbler syndrome, wounds. [See outcome study)

Horses homeopathyPonies homeopathy: abscesses, allergic lung disease, allergic skin disorders, allergy, anaemia, asthma, auto-immunity (autoimmunity), behavioural problems, cancer, chronic cough, chronic infections, colic, conjunctivitis, COPD, corneal ulcer, crib biting, Cushings Disease (Cushing’s), dermatitis, DJD, equine dysautonomia, gastric ulcer, grass sickness, head shaking (head-shaking, headshaking), itchy horse, itchy pony, joint ill, kissing spines, lameness, laminitis, liver problems, moon blindness, mud fever, navel ill, navicular disease, non-healing wounds, OCD, ophthalmia, pain control, paralysis, pedal ostitis, periodic ophthalmia (moonblindness, recurrent ophthalmia, ERU, recurrent uveitis), proud flesh, pruritus, rain scald, RAO, ringbone, sarcoids, shivering, sidebone, sinusitis, spavin, sprain, sweet itch (sweetitch), tendon and ligament injuries, urticaria, vaccination problems, viral diseases, virus, windsucking, wobbler syndrome, wounds. [See outcome study)


Cats homeopathy:
abscesses, allergy, alopecia, anaemia, aortic embolism, arthritis, auto-immunity (autoimmunity), behavioural problems, campylobacter, cancer, chlamydia, chorea, chronic cough, chronic diarrhoea, chronic infections, chronic renal failure, corneal ulcer, CRF, cryptosporidia, cystitis, dermatitis, eczema, eosinophilic granuloma, feline urological syndrome, FeLV, FIP, FIV, FUS, gingivitis, injury, itchy cat, kidney disease, lameness, lick granuloma, miliary dermatitis (miliary eczema), non-healing wounds, otitis (ear problems),pain control, paralysis, pruritus, rodent ulcer, shaker syndrome, sinusitis, stomatitis, vaccination problems, viral diseases, virus. [See outcome study)

Species and types of animal treated by the AVMC include: horses, ponies, goats, donkeys, mules, cats, dogs, cattle, pigs, sheep, llamas, alpacas, rabbits, ferrets, guinea pigs, lizards, terrapins, tortoises, snakes, raptors, poultry (domestic fowl), cage birds, budgies, canaries, budgerigars, parrots, parakeets, macaws, birds of prey (raptors).

The AVMC also offers an on-line Video Consultation Service, for those who are unable to travel to see a properly-qualified homeopathic vet, whether through illness, disability, distance or foreign residence (we obviously prefer face-to-face meetings but for some it is impossible and we do not wish to refuse help in such cases). We seek history from the client’s own veterinary surgeon (veterinarian) and write back to the vet following the session. This is a truly international option, allowing access to our services from home, anywhere in the world, in support of your local veterinary practice.


 

Far from being a ‘folksy’ and weird system of esoteric medicine, veterinary homeopathy has ‘gained its spurs’ and its use is increasing rapidly, as people realise what it has to offer, whether as a ‘first-aid’, ‘first-line’ or ‘last resort’ medicine. Skin disease, arthritis, auto-immune disorders, bowel disease, epilepsy, heart problems and behavioural conditions are frequent callers but many other diseases respond (refer to ‘species‘ page). Until modern times, little or no research had been conducted to establish its effectiveness. This has now been remedied. Research papers are appearing, showing the widespread benefits of this simple, safe and effective therapy.


Compatibility – Integrated Medicine

Homeopathic medication can be damaged by frost, excessive heat, sunlight and close proximity to Aromatherapy oils (with exceptions). Its effects in the body can be reduced by intercurrent aromatherapy (with exceptions), steroids (cortisone or corticosteroids) and anti-inflammatory drugs. It is capable of careful and informed integration with Acupuncture, but these two therapies may clash, if not properly integrated.

Integrating homeopathy with herbs is possible, with certain caveats.

Veterinary Homeopathy was the first ‘alternative’ offered by the AVMC, with other natural/alternative therapies (e.g. veterinary acupuncture, veterinary herbs, veterinary chiropractic) being added as the need and the time to study arose. Although we specialize in alternative therapies, seeking alternatives to conventional drug therapy, we do not shun conventional therapy, per se, considering its worth in each case. No truly holistic vet can ignore the existence of conventional drugs which, while quite unable to cure chronic disease, on rare occasions may be the only way to control distressing or painful symptoms. It is noteworthy how much the body can achieve without drugs, however. Our holistic and integrated service is offered in support of animal patients, ‘owners’ and carers and the veterinary profession. We are always willing to assist vets in the UK and worldwide in providing integrated care for their patients, providing the natural therapy component of a treatment program.

Acceptability

The administration of homeopathic medicines is usually very easy. Persuading dogs or horses to take homeopathic medicines is usually no problem at all. The patients like the pillules and avidly eat them, in most cases. Giving cats homeopathy is more variable but methods can usually be devised which remove stress from the occasion (see Care and Administration of Homeopathic Remedies).

It is usually quite simple to dose an animal with homeopathic medication and a variety of methods and routes of administration can be used. We have included a pair of very short videos, demonstrating how a dog or horse might respond.

The Remedies

There are several thousand homeopathic medicines available. With them, homeopathy (via the homeopathic vet0 is able to take on infectious diseases, chronic diseases, acute diseases, injuries and behavioural disorders. Even some cases of cancer defy a grave prognosis. While cancer is not easily mastered, there are encouraging numbers of recorded cases of complete recovery from some of the worst forms, coincidental with homeopathic intervention. Veterinary homeopathy even enjoys widespread use in disease prevention, in place of vaccination. For an insight into the capabilities in each species, click the required species on the species page. It is worth giving some examples of easy home treatments (first-aid) here, however, since their use does not demand the full rigours of homeopathic knowledge and understanding. Most of these are easily available in pharmacies and health shops all over the UK (usually in a 6c potency but also sometimes available in a 30c potency). A homeopathic vet embarking on the start of his or her career may well wish to start by using these medicines in practice, in order to learn the remedies and to gain faith in the responses.

First-Aid Homeopathic medicines:

  • Aconitum – This remedy treats shock, both mental and physical and will also assist in the treatment of acute febrile conditions, such as viral or bacterial diseases. Any sudden-onset disturbance of equilibrium may be helped by Aconitum.
  • Apis – Urticarial swellings, oedema and fluid in joints will often respond to this remedy, apart from its benefits for burns and scalds or for insect bites and stings.
  • Arnica – Arnica is homeopathy’s great injury remedy. Its use will minimise pain and bruising and will speed healing.
  • Belladonna – High fevers with head, ear, throat or eye pain are especially helped by this remedy. Very painful abscesses may also respond.
  • Bryonia – Arthritis, rheumatism, pneumonia or mastitis, when the animal refuses to move, are the main areas of use of Bryonia.
  • Calendula – Used as a lotion, this remedy speeds healing of cuts, grazes or open wounds, in addition to helping the animal to fight septic infection of such injuries.
  • Cantharis – This medicine helps most cases of cystitis.
  • Carbo vegetabilis – This is nick-named the ‘corpse reviver’, on account of its ability to help patients in collapse.
  • Caulophyllum – The birth process, at all stages whether before, during or after, is helped by Caulophyllum.
  • Chamomilla – Teething in young dogs and trouble from teething in any species will benefit from use of this remedy.
  • Colocynthis – Colic in horses would be the most common first-aid use of Colocynthis.
  • Euphrasia – With the folk-name ‘eyebright’, this remedy helps many eye conditions, including conjunctivitis from cold winds. It also helps in cases of sneezing and nasal allergy. It is also useful as a first-aid treatment for eye ulcers.
  • Glonoinium – First-aid remedy for heat stroke or heat distress (the AVMC uses a selected combination of remedies, for ill-effects of heat and heat stroke. Client reports are very satisfactory).
  • Hamamelis – Bleeding from wounds and orifices would indicate Hamamelis, in many cases.
  • Hepar sulphuris – This is nick-named the ‘homeopathic antibiotic’, so effective is it in helping patients to fight septic, purulent infections.
  • Hypericum – Use this remedy whenever there is a painful graze or damage to tissues rich in nerve endings (e.g. toes and tail).
  • Ledum – Use this whenever puncture wounds occur, from whatever injury. There are reputed anti-tetanus properties in addition to its ability to help such wounds heal correctly, from the depths outwards.
  • Nosodes – These are remedies made from diseases or disease material (e.g. discharges, tissues, secretions, excretions). For a fuller account of nosodes, click here.
  • Nux vomica – If an animal has stolen too much rich food or has had access to poisons, Nux vomica should help recovery from the resultant intoxication. It may also help cases of constipation and is a useful first-aid treatment in cases of ‘prolapsed intervertebral disc’ in dogs.
  • Rhus toxicodendron – This suits most cases of rheumatism and arthritis, that are worse for first movement but limber up.
  • Ruta – Ligaments, tendons and other fibrous tissues are the main areas of benefit of this remedy.
  • Silica – Helps the body to drive out foreign bodies, e.g. grass seeds. The power of this remedy, way beyond this simple capability, is evidence of the power of crystals.
  • Symphytum – Symphytum treats bone injuries of any type, speeding healing.
    In cases of bone fracture, we use Symphytum to speed healing and to stimulate a better repair. We also use it for ‘non-union’ fractures.
  • Urtica – This remedy treats nettle rash (urticaria) and helps the flow of milk from the mammary gland.

Nosodes

It is difficult to encounter veterinary homeopathy without meeting the subject of nosodes. The AVMC is willing to advise on the veterinary use of nosodes, on the basis of over 40 years’ experience. We are also able to supply nosodes for farm use and for dog, cat, horse, pony, donkey, rabbit and bird application. For the treatment of animals not under our care, we require communication with the attending veterinary surgeon. For the supply of nosodes for protection, we need to see the client or to arrange a telephone consultation or video consultation, to discuss and explain things clearly, to prevent misunderstandings or possible mishaps. The use of nosodes is not ‘vaccination’ and nosodes should not be confused with ‘vaccines’. We are at pains to elucidate these differing concepts where confusion may persist. The AVMC does not use and does not supply or sell conventional vaccines. If conventional vaccination is required, this can be performed by a conventional vet. Please bear in mind however that, according to the Data Sheet that accompanies vaccine products, ‘only healthy animals should be vaccinated’.

* homeopathy for horses * homeopathy for dogs * homeopathy for cats *
* homeopathy for cattle, sheep, pigs and poultry *

See also:

Care and Administration of Homeopathic RemediesWhy Use Homeopathy?Homeopathy for the Newborn and Unborn
What to Expect from the Homeopathic ConsultationHomeopathy for the AgedFirst-Aid Homeopathy
Responsible use of HomeopathyResearchDefinitions in Homeopathy
Therapeutic AggravationOutcome StudyHering’s Law
The Holistic VetThe Homeopathic VetNosodes
Prejudice against Homeopathy

The Law

The Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966 restricts the treatment of animals (other than your own) with homeopathy, by anyone other than a fully qualified vet. Qualified homeopaths who treat humans are not legally able to treat animals, unless they have a veterinary qualification (MRCVS).

The rant against homeopathy – a fog of non-science (click)

Species commonly presented:

Dog, cat, horse, pony, donkey, goat, rabbit and various species of bird.

Veterinary Homeopathy acts by providing an energetic stimulus to the body’s endogenous healing and harmonising processes. Veterinary homeopathy may be used alone or in carefully integrated conjunction with other therapies. It is a holistic therapy.

Veterinary homeopathy is without side effects

Veterinary homeopathy is safe in all species

Veterinary homeopathy is safe for all ages, including during pregnancy or suckling

Veterinary homeopathy requires no laboratory animal experimentation

Veterinary homeopathy treats the patient, not the symptom

Veterinary homeopathy does not suppress symptoms or signs of disease

Veterinary homeopathy stimulates the body’s own healing ability

Veterinary homeopathy operates at the bio-energetic level

The homeopathic vet treats the whole patient

The homeopathic vet does not suppress symptoms

The homeopathic vet requires to know the patient

The homeopathic vet takes into account demeanour, diet, lifestyle, behaviour and appearance