Here’s how to use the signs and symptoms from your animal companions to “fine tune” their health.
In order to maintain our animal companions in optimal health, it is extremely important to understand the distinction between “common” and “normal”.
Why does it matter whether symptoms are considered common or normal in dogs and cats?
When the body is in a state of optimal health, all systems are in balance and no external manifestations (seen in the symptoms) of imbalance can be found.
Many of the subtle changes we observe in our pets are early warning signs that there is imbalance deep within the body. These are not “diseases” per se, but rather commonly observed deviations from this state of equilibrium.
Recognizing and treating these common, but abnormal, early warning signs is critical to preventing more serious problems in the future.
An overview of some of these symptoms is as follows:
runny or red eyes
intermittent loose stools
”sensitive” stomach with vomiting, diarrhea and/or other gastrointestinal symptoms
straining to defecate
excess ear wax
picky or excessive appetite
thin coat/excess shedding
frequent or difficult urination
loss of pigment
rough, dry nose or pads
anal sac problems
In more detail we can see that:
Health is freedom. You can see it in a glowing hair coat, bright eyes and high energy. It is an absence of illness, or dependency on medications, or avoidance of “allergins”. Offspring of a healthy animal will be even healthier, and not have as many “breed” problems. Healthy animals live longer than we have come to expect.
There are many symptoms we consider normal that really represent an underlying energy imbalance, often made worse from poor diet and vaccination. As we cure animals of “disease”, we find that these “normal” things go away, too. Do not be satisfied with the health of your animals until most of the following symptoms are gone. Treat young animals as soon as these are observed.
BEHAVIOR: Fear of loud noises, thunder, wind; barks too much and too long; suspicious nature; timidity; indolence; licking things, people; irritability; indolence; eating dog stool (possibly cat stool) – it seems to be normal to eat horse, cow and rabbit manure; feet sensitive to handling; aggressiveness at play; destructiveness; biting when petted too long (cats, especially on rump); hysteria when restrained; not covering stool and not using litter box (cats); clumsy;
DIGESTIVE TRACT: obesity or thinness; loss of teeth; bad breath; pale gums; red gums; *a red line where the teeth go into the gum, above one or more teeth; tarter accumulation; bad breath; poor appetite; excessive appetite; finicky appetite; sensitivity to milk, meat, or any specific food; craving weird things, especially non-food items like paper, dirt and plastic; vomiting often, vomiting hairballs (or the hairball gagging type of vomit even if hairballs do not come up) more than 1-2x/year; Mucous on stools, even occasional; tendency to diarrhea with least change of diet; constipation; hard, dry stools. In Addition for cats: thirst – a super healthy cat on good food will drink at most once a week and many will never drink as they absorb enough from their diet unless on dry food.
LOCOMOTION: Stiff when getting up; early hip dysplasia; inability to jump up on furniture or counters; loss in the bounce in their step.
SKIN: coat – doggy smell, dry, oily, dull lack luster, excessive shedding; attracts fleas & ticks a lot; chronic ear problems – wax, need frequent cleaning, itchy, red; eyes: discharge, tearing, or matter in corner of eyes. “Freckles” on the face (cats) that appear with age; loss of whiskers; claws fragile, shedding, hard to trim, twisted; not grooming well.
TEMPERATURE: sensitive to heat or cold. Low grade fevers – The typical (“normal”) range is: 99.5-101.5
AGING: Energy, play, fun and activity level should maintain at the 2 year old level.
In Holistic Actions! we show you how to use these early warning signs. Promote vitality, energy and long and happy lives for your animal family members.
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Dr. Jeff and Christina