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Homeopathy for Animals - Dogs don't talk

A puppy with elbow dysplasis

I am sleeping
with a dog. It's 2:00 a.m. and I wake to find her small, slender face a foot
or two away from mine, eyes fixed on me. Lily has been with me for nine months
and she has changed my life: this precious creature has crawled into a corner
of my heart and gotten lodged there. Permanent occupancy.
     I stumbled into the world of dogs with major blinders
on. I didn't grow up with dogs and never owned a dog in my life. I always thought
I was a "cat person." But I had a dream one night in which a white Golden Retriever
came to me and said, "Please take me home." The next morning, I went online and
found a website for white Golden Retrievers, which are really English Golden
Retrievers bred in Sweden, and the breeder was just two hours from me.
     I took Lily home when she was eight weeks old.
She was such a trusting thing. It amazed me that this animal would so willingly
follow me into the unknown. When we got into the car, I placed her in the front
seat and began to drive. She started to have diarrhea, which was the beginning
of her health problems. After I stopped and cleaned her up, she climbed into
my lap and sat there the whole two-hour drive home. I petted her and tried to
keep my eyes on the road.

A blur of chaos and distraction
The first weeks with Lily were a blur of chaos and distraction: racing off to
the bookstore to buy books about training, racing off to the pet store to buy
a crate, racing back to the pet store because the crate was too big, finding
a veterinarian, calling every person I knew who had a dog, soaking up scraps
of advice. Is it really okay to give a dog a smoked pig's ear? What's a training
collar? In the midst of all that frenzy, I was also aware of something lighter:
a sense of awe, a budding and glorious sense of connection—love.
     Lily followed me everywhere that first night, from
kitchen to living room to bathroom. Every time I left a room, she got an anxious,
alert look on her face. Every time I took her out she had runny diarrhea and
sometimes vomited as well. I called the vet who told me to change her diet, but
after one month, these problems were no better. I went to a different vet who
diagnosed a Giardia infection (a parasitic infection in the intestines). I gave
Lily the homeopathic remedy Veratrum album and in three days the problem was
resolved. I was thrilled because during the previous month, Lily had not grown
as her food was not being properly absorbed. Now the real growth started.


Lily before

Completely immobile
Unfortunately, bigger problems started not long after that. One day when Lily
and I were out for a walk, she suddenly sat down in the middle of the sidewalk
for no apparent reason. I gave her leash a gentle tug. Her neck craned towards
me, but her body remained fixed as though glued. I tugged some more, "Let's go,
Lily!" At this, she lay down. She looked hilarious: soft, round, puppy body—yet
quite composed and serene, completely immobile and planted on the pavement. What
was this? So much obstinacy in such a tiny, fuzzy body!
     When she was five months old Lily started to limp.
In spite of decreasing her exercise on the advice of the vet, the limp progressed
until Lily stopped walking altogether. I consulted numerous vets: one told me
to crate Lily for seven months in the hope that she might outgrow it; another
told me to fast her on nothing but lettuce for ten days. An orthopedic vet diagnosed
elbow dysplasia (a serious, degenerative arthritic disease that is common in
retrievers) along with bone fragments in the joint causing additional inflammation.
He said he could do surgery to clean out the bone fragments, but this would not
help the dysplasia, nor could he promise that her body would not produce more
bone fragments in the joint.

Homeopathy: Lily's last chance
I turned to alternative medicine and tried acupuncture, supplements, herbs. Nothing
helped. Finally, I knew that her only chance was homeopathy. I was uneasy because
I didn't want to be Lily's "mother" as well as her "doctor"—but I knew
it was a constitutional case and I knew I needed to think deeply about it to
capture her innermost self. What if I got the wrong remedy? Would I hurt her
more? After practicing homeopathy professionally for twenty-six years, here I
was asking myself such questions! I got myself centered, sat with pen and paper,
and came up with the following rubrics:
•     Stomach: Desires indigestible foods. (She
loves broken glass, bricks, stuffing from toys.)
•     Constipation: with difficult, incomplete,
unsatisfactory stool
•     Sleeps deeply and snores, and starts during
sleep
•     Mischievous
•     Obstinate
•     Offended easily (If given constructive criticism,
she can be upset for two days.)
•     Desire for company and occupation ameliorates.
(She wags her tail when she comes to work with me and looks forward to doing
a good job. She takes the work seriously and is very quiet, still, and reserved.)
•     Fear of crowds. (She has a certain timidity
in a crowd and starts to pull on her leash.)
•     Sensitiveness, timidity, mildness, and want
of self-confidence. (She established herself as a creature of eminent dignity
and restraint even as a puppy.)
•     Extremities: swelling of wrist
•     Extremities: Pain, rheumatic and inflammation
of joints
•     Extremities: Pain and stiffness of the elbow
joint
•     Extremities: Paralysis, lameness, and weakness
of upper limbs
•     Extremities: Awkwardness, lower limbs, stumbling
when walking.
     In addition, I found out that Lily's mother was
not fed properly during the pregnancy and that she had a calcium deficiency.
The breeder had immunized Lily twice.
     Based on the totality of symptoms, I gave her Calcarea
carbonica 200C. In twenty-four hours, Lily was no longer lame and had no apparent
pain at all. I repeated Calcarea carbonica if she started to become lame again,
and it worked each time.


Lily after

An insecticide antidotes
Lily did very well until she started to get ticks. The vet told me to use a topical
insecticide, and again, with blinders on, I applied it as directed. One hour
later, Lily was lame again. I was worried that once the effects of the homeopathic
remedy had been antidoted, another dose of her remedy might not work for months.
Luckily, after another dose of Calcarea carbonica 200C, she was fine.
     About two months later, I decided to get x-rays
of Lily's elbow. I chose a new orthopedic vet, and I did not explain that I had
treated Lily with homeopathy. When the results came back, the vet scratched his
head wondering why these new x-rays did not even resemble the earlier x-rays.
He said the bone was not sclerosed, nor was there arthritis or any inflammation.
There were no fragments of bone around the elbow joint (as earlier reports had
shown) nor was there any elbow dysplasia. He said the elbow was ever so slightly
turned, but that was common in Golden Retrievers. I took Lily home and thanked
God that homeopathy had helped her.
     In the past months, I have learned a lot about
how to treat dogs—which is very similar to my professional experience in
treating newborn babies with homeopathy, as neither dogs nor babies can verbally
tell you their symptoms. Most of all, however, I have learned about unconditional
love. Lily loves me in a very pure and accepting way, and I feel very lucky to
have her in my life.

Sidebar:
Calcarea carbonica
Tough on the outside, soft on the inside

Calcarea carbonica individuals (human and animal) exhibit sensitivity to the
needs and demands of others. Their work ethic is very strong: they work hard
and take their work seriously. They value themselves based on what they do, how
well they perform, and what tasks or goals they accomplish.
     Calcarea carbonica individuals have a strong sense
of responsibility. They can be pulled in multiple, often conflicting, directions
by the demands of family members, bosses, coworkers, professional organizations,
churches, and community groups. They often assume excessive burdens as they strive
to be perfect and shine in the workplace. They want to belong and be valued by
those around them, but they seek acceptance through the accomplishment of deeds.
They can hide their low self-esteem behind a mask of efficiency, capability,
and independence. In an attempt to fulfill the expectations of others and meet
their own high standards, they may wind up being completely exhausted.
     Many end up feeling isolated and betrayed by those
around them. Unfortunately, their frenetic activity only serves to distance them
further from others and prevent them from finding the love and intimacy they
so desperately need. As they race to fulfill the needs of others, they exhaust
themselves physically and mentally, causing their minds to become fragmented
and dull. It is difficult for the Calcarea carbonica individual to relax, let
go, or take time out for play and recreation.
     They experience a lot of fears and anxiety. They
have fear of poverty, betrayal, disease, closed spaces, spiders, insects, mice,
the future, not doing their job right, being observed, and being judged. Many
Calcarea carbonica individuals will attempt to deflect their anxiety by resorting
to addictive behaviors such as overeating and overworking. Their behavior may
eventually lead them to exhaustion, mental confusion, and even profound depression.
     They are very sensitive individuals whose feelings
get hurt easily. If they are criticized, they believe the criticism and reproach
themselves.
     They are devoted to whomever they choose in their
lives; service and devotion to these people is utmost and foremost.
     If you reflect on an egg, the outside is very hard
and tough, and the inside is very soft, movable, and unstable. This is a good
description of Calcarea carbonica.

About the author:
Ananda Zaren has been practicing homeopathy since 1977. She has studied with
George Vithoulkas extensively both in Europe and the U.S. Since 1987, she has
been teaching in England, Norway, Holland, Israel, Germany, Switzerland, New
Zealand, Australia, Belgium, and India. She has practiced homeopathy in allopathic
hospitals in Europe, and has presented at the First and Second World Congresses
on Chronic Diseases in Germany. Ananda is the author of two textbooks entitled Core
Elements of the Materia Medica of the Mind, Volumes I and II.
In addition
to maintaining a practice in Santa Barbara, California, she is updating Volumes
I and II of her Materia Medica, as well as working on Volume III.