8/27/2018

What is Holistic Pet Care?

August 30, 2018 is National Holistic Pet Day. Since many dog lovers are new to this, we would like to share some information about what holistic health truly means.

To put it simply, holistic health is an approach to wellness that incorporates a dog’s body, mind, and spirit. Holistic health is about living a preventative lifestyle.

Rather than waiting for a condition to happen, the goal with holistic medicine is to prevent that condition from occurring via various wellness techniques.

The number of dog lovers who wish to learn about holistic health is increasing significantly each year.

Once you have made the decision to learn about holistic health, you can then learn how to strengthen your dog’s food, body, mind, and spirit.

Let’s Eat Healthy

As you may have already guessed, nutrition plays a key role in your dog’s health and wellness (and ours, too!). By feeding your dog a diet that’s natural and organic, you provide your dog with a potentially much-needed immune boost thereby reducing the risk of developing health conditions.

Our dog’s body (nor ours) is designed to handle the dyes, preservatives, or chemicals that are put in all kinds of food each day. Most dog food (and human food) is overly processed and truly not good for a mammal’s body.

Feeding a high-quality dog food can also help your dog fight allergies (one of the main causes of allergies in dogs has to do with their commercial diet). Not only does high-quality dog food help fight allergies but also reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes, intestinal problems, and other food-related health conditions.

If you’re having trouble determining what is best to feed your dog, you can search for an alternative veterinarian or holistic veterinarian who has extensive knowledge in this field.

And, the water. Don’t forget about the water. You know that water that comes from your city source? You know, the one you probably drink daily and provide to your dog? That water often contains fluoride, chlorine, and other chemicals to keep it ‘clean.’

Don’t panic if you have been drinking this and allowing your pet to drink it. Most people don’t know those chemicals can be found in city water.

You can keep your dog (and yourself) safe by using filtered water, never re-use plastic bottles to fill their water bowl (the plastic bottles really aren’t good either) and be certain to use stainless steel dog bowls rather than plastic doggy bowls.

Work the Body

When you think of keeping your body healthy, what’s the first step that usually comes to mind other than diet? YES, exercise. Diet and exercise go hand-in-hand.

Not only does exercise reduce excess weight, but it lowers cholesterol levels, reduces anxiety, reduces the risk of heart disease, reduces the risk of diabetes, and can even help reduce the risk of developing various types of cancer!

Don’t let exercise get boring, either. Usually, we start off strong and slowly go back to our normal sedentary lifestyle. Of course, walking is the most common form of exercise. But, games like fetch also provide your dog with some healthy fun.

Fleas and Ticks are Terrible

Fleas and ticks are horrible… especially in the summer. So, what do we do? We grab that flea medicine to place on our dog’s skin. That absorbs and kills the fleas. Right?

If you want to take a holistic approach to your dog’s health, those aren’t really labeled as acceptable. Dog lovers practicing a holistic approach use natural grooming products. And, natural flea and tick preventatives. Usually, this consists of a mix of essential oils.

The Mind and Spirit at Peace

We have discussed nutrition and taking care of the body physically. Now, let’s move on to the mental side of the spectrum.

Mental stimulation is a crucial puzzle piece in your dog’s wellness puzzle. A healthy, well-balanced brain is critical. Don’t forget to stimulate those brain cells.

If you take a walk through your local pet store, you will see there are several toys designed to do just that. Take a look at the puzzles your local store offers… or take a look on Amazon. This might take some ‘testing.’ Each dog has a different preference as to what they call ‘fun.’

If you grab one puzzle, and your dog isn’t a fan, don’t give up just yet. That puzzle may not be for her. Try another.

Most dogs also need social interaction with other dogs. Find a compatible dog and go on a doggy playdate. Or, if none of your friends have a dog, take a trip to your local dog park. Let your dog play… a tired dog is a happy dog.

Don’t Overwhelm Yourself

We know that’s a lot of information to take in at one time. We just discussed literally every aspect of your dog’s well-being. If you don’t think you can handle all of this at once, take it step by step. Start by ensuring your dog’s mental health is met and move on to their nutrition… for example. And, if you need help, don’t forget your veterinarian is there to help you.