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Natural Medicine Overview

Complementary and alternative medicine is experiencing unprecedented attention in both popular and professional circles worldwide. As understanding of these both ancient and novel methods is emerging, increased research funding has become available. With increased research, more and more people are beginning to desire practitioners that employ CAVM.

Holistic veterinary medicine is a comprehensive approach to heath care. In other words, holistic veterinary medicine employs CAVM with conventional diagnostics and therapeutics. Here at Dogwood Pet Hospital, we incorporate acupuncture, botanical and glandular medicine, Veterinary Orthopedic Manipulation (like chiropractic, but for animals), and nutraceuticals, as well as conventional therapy, vaccinations, surgery and dentistry. This approach to veterinary care allows our doctors to utilize all available resources to better care for the pets that they see. No one form of medicine has all the answers to all disease conditions. An integrated approach to wellness and disease increases the odds that the patient will do well, have the greatest health, the least discomfort, and for the most years.

Here are some examples of the kind of integrative medicine we might do

Labrador diagnosed with hip dysplasia

Hannah is a 9-year-old Labrador mix. She was diagnosed with hip dysplasia several years ago and now has decreased mobility from hip arthritis. Our conventional approach is to treat Hannah with a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug and change her diet to facilitate weight loss. However, this is basically all that conventional medicine has to offer. By using CAVM as part of our integrative therapy, we also start Hannah on acupuncture treatments, herbal supplements, glucosamine, and nutraceuticals from trusted professional sources. Hannah will do much better than a similar dog only treated conventionally.

Senior Tabby suffers from chronic diarrhea


Freckles is an 11-year-old tabby with inflammatory bowel disease and increased liver enzymes on his bloodwork. Conventional therapy tells us to treat Freckles with steroids and change his diet. Our integrative approach tells us that Freckles will benefit from acupuncture, Silymarin and Sam-E, and herbal treatment. Our experience tells us that Freckles will fare better than with steroids and diet change alone.

Healthy adult terrier

Sweetums is a 4-year-old terrier on commercial food. We place Sweetums on a higher quality, more natural diet, and add natural supplements.

These are just a few examples of the many ways integrative medicine adds to the health care of the companion animals we care for. Let us help your pet too!

Complementary (Integrative) Medicine can include

  • Comprehensive physical examination
  • Diagnostics
    • Intestinal parasite exam (fecal)
    • Blood tests – CBC, Chemistries, Thyroid Function
    • Radiographs, Ultrasound
    • Electrocardiogram
    • Cytology
    • Tongue diagnosis
    • Pulse diagnosis
  • Nutrition – analysis and recommendations
      Includes nutritional supplementation for a complete diet
  • Herbal and glandular products
  • Antibiotics, steroids, and other allopathic medicines
  • Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
  • Acupuncture
  • Laser Therapy
  • VOM – Veterinary Orthopedic Manipulation
  • Vaccination & exposure risk factor analysis
  • Surgery
  • Dentistry – both preventive and interventions
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