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Thursday
Nov102011

Nutrient Therapies Increase Longevity in Cats 

Effect of Nutritional Interventions on Longevity of Senior Cats

Cupp, C. J., Jean-Philippe, C., Kerr, W. W.,  Patil, A. R., Perez-Camargo, G.

Intern J Appl Res Vet Med, vol 5, No 3, 2007

The objective of this study was to evaluate whether antioxidants, alone or in combination with other nutritional supplements, increase health and longevity in a population of older cats. A group of 90 cats between the ages of 7 and 17 years was blocked into 3 groups by age, body condition score, and gender.

Cats were assigned to 1 of 3 diets: control (basal diet of nutritionally complete cat food), basal diet with added antioxidants (vitamin E and beta-carotene), and basal diet with added antioxidants, dried whole chicory root (source of prebiotic), and a blend of supplemental n-3 and n-6 fatty acids.

The diets were fed exclusively for the remaining lifetime of each cat. Physical exams, body condition scores, complete blood count, serum chemistries, plasma fatty acids, serum antioxidant status, fecal microflora, urinalysis, and body composition by dual-energy xray absorptiometry were performed at study initiation and at periodic intervals thereafter.

After 5 years, cats fed the diet with the antioxidants vitamin E and beta-carotene, dried chicory root, and a blend of n-3 and n-6 fatty acids, lived significantly longer than cats fed the control diet. Positive indicators of reduced disease incidence and improved intestinal health were also observed.

Thursday
Nov102011

Natural Digestive Sytem Health for Horses 

Effects of dietary short-chain fructooligosaccharides on the intestinal microflora of horses subjected to a sudden change in diet

Respondek, F., Goachet, A. G., Julliand, V.

J. Anim. Sci. 2008. 86:316-323.

Prebiotic compounds, such as short-chain fructooligosaccharides (scFOS), have been shown to improve health, welfare, or both, in several species, but few studies have been conducted in horses, despite the sensitivity of their hindgut microflora.

We hypothesized that prebiotic oligosaccharides, known to be able to stabilize the intestinal microflora in other species, would be of importance in horses. Our study was designed to evaluate the effect of scFOS supplementation on the equine intestinal microflora and to assess its effectiveness in reducing hindgut microbial disturbances related to sudden diet changes.

Four adult geldings were allotted by weight into 2 groups and assigned to diets with and without (control) scFOS supplementation for 21 d in a crossover design. Cecal and colonic contents were collected through cannulas to assess the effect of an abrupt incorporation of barley in the diet of horses on microbial populations and fermentation variables. The addition of barley to the control diet caused substantial changes in the colonic microflora, such as increases (P < 0.05) in the concentration in total anaerobes, lactobacilli, streptococci, and lactate-utilizing bacteria. The scFOS supplementation reduced the barley intake-related changes.

In contrast to the control diet, Lactobacillus and Streptococcus populations did not increase. Although the colonic D-lactate concentration increased (P < 0.05) after the meal of barley in the control group, it did not accumulate with scFOS supplementation.

These data indicate that a scFOS supplementation would be effective in reducing disruptions of the microbial populations in the equine hindgut under stressful situations like acute starch overloads.

Tuesday
Oct272009

Tips For Training Your Dog

Basics of Dog Training

It's essential for dog parents to know certain basic factors that determine your relationship with your Dog and can go a long way in training him effectively.

Before you begin training your Dog, it is absolutely essential that you build a loving bond with him. This is important as it helps you to understand his needs and instincts and also allows your Dog to have complete trust in you.

Let us see how.......

How To Bond With Your Dog

Building a bond with your Dog is the first and the most crucial step involved in training him successfully. As soon as you bring your Dog home, you must first try to develop a caring and loving relationship with him in order to win his trust and confidence.

When Dogs are secure in the knowledge that they belong to the family, they are more likely to respond better to their owners' training commands. Just like with any relationship, there must be mutual trust and respect between you and your Dog.

Trust takes time to develop and respect comes from defining boundaries and treating any breach of those boundaries with firmness and fairness.

Without enforceable limitations, respect can’t be developed. And when there is no respect, building a bond with your Dog is almost impossible.

4 Golden Rules To Building A Relationship With Your Dog :

  • Spend quality time together;
  • Take him out in the world and experience life together;
  • Establish and promote a level of mutual respect; and
  • Develop a way of communicating to understand each other's needs.

Building a bond with your Dog will not only help you manage him better but will also make your Dog calm, quiet and an extremely well-adjusted pet.

Love Your Dog and He Will Love You back

Once you're succesful in building a bond with your Dog, you can rest assured that training him and teaching him new and clever tricks will be a cakewalk.

 

How Your Dog Learns...

Your Dog's learning period can be divided into five phases:

The Teaching Phase - This is the phase where you must physically demonstrate to your Dog exactly what you want him to do.

The Practicing Phase - Practice makes Perfect. Once a lesson is learnt, practice with your Dog what you have just taught him.

The Generalizing Phase - Here you must continue practicing with your Dog in different locations and in an environment with a few distractions. You can take your Dog out for a walk, or to a nearby park and command him to practice whatever you've taught him.

Practicing the learned lessons in multiple locations and in the presence of small distractions will help him learn and retain lessons better.

 

The Testing Phase - Once you're sure that your Dog has achieved almost 90% success....he responds correctly almost every time you give a command, you must start testing his accuracy in newer locations with a lot of distractions.

Example: Take him to the local shopping mall and ask him to obey your command. He may not come up with the correct response the very first time you do this, but you must not lose hope.

The idea is to test your Dog to see how he responds in an environment which is new to him. Set-up a situation where you are in control of the environment and your Dog.

There are only 2 possibilities:

  • Your Dog succeeds!!! (Trumpets please!)
  • In case your Dog fails, re-examine the situation. Review and/or change your training. Then try testing again.

Keep on testing until he succeeds. Follow the rule of the 3 Ps – patience, persistence, praise.

Internalizing Phase - Finally, comes the extremely rewarding phase where your Dog does everything he is taught to do even without your commands.

Remember:

  • Never scold your Dog if he fails. It's not his fault. You have failed as a trainer!
  • You must be patient and persistent for your efforts to show rewards.
  • Appreciate and love your Dog when he does it right! A little encouragement will work wonders for your Dog.
  • Dog Training is easy when you do it right.

Monday
Oct122009

Scientific Evidence of Veterinary Homoeopathy

Albrecht et al found that, in the treatment of 1,440 piglets, 'Homoeopathic metaphylaxis is significantly effective compared with placebo and low dose antibiotic metaphylaxis for incidence of disease and rate of disease of the respiratory tract among the animals studied'.

Albrecht, H. et al. Homoeopathy versus Antibiotics in metaphylaxis of infectious disease: a clinical study in pig fattening and its significance to consumers. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine 1999. 5 (5); 64-8.

 

On the treatment of salmonella infection in poultry, Berchieri et al found that when 180 one-day-old chicks were given either an active homoeopathic medicine or control and then challenged with a culture of salmonella, 'Birds receiving active treatment were less likely to grow the strain of salmonella from cloacal swabs compared to control'.

Berchieri, A. Jr. et al. Evaluation of isopathic treatment of salmonella enteritidis in poultry. Homeopathy 2006; 95 (2); 94-7.

 

Bertani et al, treating oedema in 307 rats with either a homoeopathic medicine or control, found that homoeopathy significantly reduced oedema in comparison to controls.

Bertani, S, et al. Dual effects of homeopathic mineral complex on carrageenan-induced oedema in rats. The British Homoeopathic Journal 1999; 88 (3); 101-5.

 

From Cazin et al, six groups of 30 mice given radio-labelled arsenic were treated with various homoeopathic potencies of arsenic and the level of retention was compared to controls. All homoeopathic potencies of arsenic were found to have a greater effect on arsenic elimination than controls.

Cazin, J.C, et al. A study of the effect of decimal and centesimal dilutions of arsenic on the retention and mobilisation of arsenic in the rat. Human Toxicology 1987; 6 (4); 315-20.

 

From Datta et al, the authors found that pre-and post-feeding of homeopathically prepared arsenicum album 30C and 200C to mice exposed to arsenic trioxide reduced the genotoxic effects (chromosome aberrations, micronucleated erythrocytes and sperm head anomaly) of arsenic when compared to controls.

Datta, S et al. Efficacy of a potentized homoeopathic drug (Arsenicum album-30) in reducing genotoxic effects produced by arsenic trioxide in mice; comparative studies of pre-, post-and combined pre-and post-oral administration of comparative efficacy of two microdoses. Complementary Therapies in Medicine 1999 June; 7 (2); 62-75.

 

 

Monday
Jun082009

Natural Animal Therapies

Naturopathic animal health care

An experienced animal naturopath or holistic animal health practitioner seeks to restore balance to the animal's health through the use of dietary changes, individually-prescribed nutrient therapies, herbal or homoeopathic medicines. Animal naturopaths and holistic animal health practitioners also consider prevention to be an integral part of their work with animals – and educating pet owners about correct diets, nutrient supplementation and healthy environments is an important aspect of their profession.

 

Increase in natural animal health care

There has been an increase in consumer demand for qualified natural animal therapists to treat animals. This is probably due to the growing popularity of natural therapies in general and the increasing realisation that mainstream treatments do not always succeed.

In addition, people usually want to try to identify the underlying cause of their pet’s health problems – not just treat the symptoms. Furthermore, people are becoming more educated in their own health and are realising that many pharmaceutical drug treatments can cause serious side effects and long-term effects. Consequently, more people are seeking natural therapies for themselves – often with great success. Therefore, it is only natural that many people also seek them for their animals.

Many health problems in animals can be treated effectively with natural therapies. Conditions such as autoimmune diseases, gastrointestinal disorders, skin conditions, degenerative joint conditions, recurrent ear infections in dogs, laminitis in horses, and many other conditions - including many being diagnosed as ‘untreatable’, can often be treated rapidly and safely by qualified animal naturopaths and holistic animal health practitioners.

 

Qualifications of natural animal therapists

There are vast differences in qualifications between natural animal health practitioners. Many practitioners only have a diploma in (human) herbal medicine or homoeopathy and have not completed any training in animal health. This can pose a risk for the animal as it is important for practitioners to understand the physiology of each animal species that they work with as well as the potential side effects of certain natural remedies on each animal species. For example, giving some animal species certain herbal medicines can prove to be fatal and so can particular essential oils and some foods. Furthermore, certain foods are unhealthy in some species of animals and not in others. In addition, there are particular herbs that should never be given to certain animal species and some that can be given to some breeds and not others. It is vitally important for practitioners to understand these factors and untrained practitioners will lack this essential knowledge. 

HATO accredited practitioners must meet stringent standards for accreditation. In order to become an accredited HATO member, practitioners must have successfully completed approved training in the area of health they practice in. For example, many of the HATO animal naturopaths are fully qualified (human) naturopaths that have additional qualifications in the animal health field or HATO-accredited holistic animal health practitioners have successfully completed a 3 year Diploma with HATO that specifically covers natural animal health and animal nutrition. 

As mentioned previously, it is important to choose a well-trained animal naturopath or holistic animal health practitioner as there are so many herbal remedies, nutrients and other naturopathic treatments that should never be given to certain species of animals. In addition, due to the unique anatomy of each of the animal species, dosages of herbal medicines or nutrient supplements can vary significantly from the dosage given to humans.

 

Why are natural animal therapy careers so rewarding?

Well-trained holistic animal health practitioners and animal naturopaths gain a lot of satisfaction using natural therapies on animals as, in many cases, they can be just as effective as most mainstream treatments but without the potential side effects. Not only that, an experienced practitioner will have the ability to identify the underlying cause of the disorder and treat it accordingly – not just treat the superficial symptoms. A large number of people seek naturopathic treatments for their pets when all else has failed. Therefore, it gives holistic animal health practitioners and animal naturopaths a significant amount of satisfaction when they can help an animal, particularly when there is a history of a long-term illness, when no-one else was able to provide an effective cure.

 

The future of natural animal health care

There has been a dramatic increase in people seeking advice from professionals in the natural animal health field. Many people are realising that qualified natural animal practitioners can help them achieve their goals regarding their pet’s health - without the need for invasive surgery, drugs that may have toxic side effects or other potentially harmful treatments. This is why the natural animal field is growing so quickly and this is why it is really important for practitioners to be well-trained. 

To find a qualified holistic animal health practitioner or animal naturopath when seeking advice for your pets or livestock please visit our members page: http://www.hato.com.au/members/ 

If you wish to become a HATO-accredited animal nutritionist or holistic animal health practitioner, please visit our courses page: http://www.hato.com.au/approved-courses/  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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