Tag Archives: Will Falconer DVM

Flu Fear Fans Vaccination Flames

JUNE 18, 2017 BY

Three pups wrestling on grass
Whoo hooo! Hey, any of you guys have a cough?

Panic Time? Not if You’re Smart.

The canine influenza virus (CIV to the lab folks, or dog flu to most of us) has made another come back. Dog flu was all the rage in Chicago in 2015, and I posted about the likely “genus epidemicus” (remedies to cure and/or prevent this illness) back then, and I’m sure it still applies today.

What’s changed that it’s going around again?

Very little, from the sounds of it. It’s cropped up at some dog shows and a
recent post on the AVMA site reveals it’s moved back into several states this
time around.

In May 2017, canine H3N2 influenza was diagnosed in dogs in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri, Louisiana, and Illinois. This was the same strain of H3N2 involved in the 2015 outbreak in Chicago.1

I was a bit surprised to hear of the resurgence, as I expected there’d be a
wide spread immunity by now, two years after the initial run.

Also surprising to me is the apparent hysteria to get dogs vaccinated, likely
fueled by the media, who are milking the “contagion factor” all they can.

What’s in it for them? More eyeballs on their station/website, more ad sales.

Here’s a sample from a blog reader who commented on one of my earlier dog flu

This is definitely the HOT topic right now in my dog circle. We do agility and
it’s all the fear right now. Starting in Georgia and Florida and now in Texas

Many are ordering the vaccine. Many fears about these strains going around if caught can cause permanent lung damage and cost thousands of dollars to treat your dog. The stories are scary. I am having faith in Homeopathy.

Seriously?? “Permanent lung damage?” From the flu?

Sounds like unfounded hysteria to me, until I hear post mortem results that prove otherwise.

Reality Check

Let’s get the facts of this flu in hand, and have a plan in place that’s risk free, for both prevention and treatment, if your dog should get this flu.

There are two measures for every epidemic, whether human or animal.  They are:

  • Morbidity
  • Mortality

Very different measures.

The first, morbidity, just means how many are sickened by a given infectious disease.  It’s akin to contagion.  How easy is this virus to catch?  That’s morbidity.

The second, mortality, like it sounds, means how high is the death rate in the population that does catch the bug?

Just like the 2015 dog flu outbreak, this same virus is quite contagious, but not much of a threat to reasonably healthy dogs:

The H3N2 virus exhibits extremely high mobility and low mortality, and an
estimated 3 to 5 percent of dogs infected die.

Dr. Hawkes lost one of his black Russian terriers—though he’s quick to point
out that this particular dog had additional medical issues.

“It was pretty scary to see my 10 big dogs taken down in a matter of days,”
Hawkes said.2

“Additional medical issues?”

In other words, this was not a healthy dog.

Typical of most infectious diseases (and even parasites from fleas to heartworms), it preys mostly on those weakened, less healthy individuals in any given population.

Although most dogs recover without incident, deaths due to H3N2 have been reported.3

Oh, and no scientist anywhere is citing “permanent lung damage.”

Species Jumping

Oh, those pesky flu viruses, they seem to like to spread their influence beyond the borders of species lines.

The first we knew of dog flu was in 2004, when H3N8 apparently jumped from horses to greyhounds in Florida.

And our latest dog flu variant, H3N2, has infected some cats.

Following the initial diagnosis in Chicago, additional cases of canine H3N2
influenza were reported in a number of states. In early 2016, a group of
shelter cats in Indiana were diagnosed with H3N2 canine influenza. It is
believed the virus was transmitted to them from infected dogs.4

No humans have caught this flu in either variant to date.

How to Think Through the Vaccine Hype

With the help of main stream media and shock jocks on local TV news shows,
there’s been a rush to get dogs vaccinated against dog flu.

Let me help you see why that’s not in your best interests.

First, we look at efficacy, or how well it protects. Much like flu in humans, there’s more conjecture about efficacy than there is hard data to suggest we can rely on it protecting the vaccinated.

Vaccines are available for both H3N8 and H3N2 canine influenza. A bivalent
vaccine offering protection against both strains is also available. Currently,
there are no canine influenza vaccines approved for use in cats. Vaccination
can reduce the risk of a dog contracting canine influenza. Vaccination may not all together prevent an infection, but it may reduce the severity and duration of clinical illness.

The canine influenza vaccine is a “lifestyle” vaccine, and is not recommended
for every dog.5

“May not altogether prevent an infection?”

“…may reduce the severity and duration of clinical illness?”

Yes, and I may be a genius billionaire with yachts in five oceans and a fleet of private jets who could have retired 20 years ago.


Then, we always need to look at safety, as you well know if you’ve read anything on this site or many others concerned about vaccines and our current epidemic of vaccine injury in kids and animals.

Vaccines in general, and I’m sure this one is no exception, lack both efficacy and safety. Read that link on safety above for the inside scoop on the animal side of that.

And look around at the startling rise in autism and death from peanut allergy, both of which paralleled closely the rocketing rate of childhood vaccine “requirements.”

Add to that my recent post about the latest study the skeptics didn’t want you to see, comparing vaccinated vs non-vaccinated children, and you should have any concerns about vaccine safety verified in a hurry.

Conventional Treatment? You Can Do Better, Trust Me.

You know the old saw,

If your only tool is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail?”

Well, that hammer in Dr. WhiteCoat’s hands is antibiotics. Given freely, given way too often, and causing all sorts of gut and immune system damage.

And, last I checked, antibiotics still aren’t effective against viruses, right?

And CIV stands for what, again?

Canine influenza virus.

So, how’s that treatment working out, out there in nail land?

The majority of infected dogs exhibit the mild form of canine influenza. The
most common clinical sign is a cough that persists for 10 to 21 days despite treatment with antibiotics and cough suppressants. 6

“Persists…despite treatment?”

And side effects are ruined gut flora, where 80% of your dog’s immune system resides?

How loudly can you shout NO!?

A Free Report to Put Your Mind at Ease

I recognized that my earlier post on the 2015 dog flu prevention and treatment remedies was a bit difficult to sort out. I was pretty excited when I wrote it, as we’d had real, verifiable cures of dogs with dog flu from two homeopathic remedies.

To that end, I collated what you need to know to use homeopathy to do two worthy things in this particular epidemic:

  1. Effectively and cheaply and safely prevent dog flu.
  2. Treat it effectively, cheaply and safely, if your dog was unlucky enough to contract dog flu.

Click on this button and you’ll have my Dog Flu report in short order:

Let’s keep track of this so we stay on top of the best remedy choices to prevent and/or treat it.

  1. Canine Influenza, Canine Influenza, https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Reference/Pages/Canine-Influenza-Backgrounder.aspx
  2. Canine Influenza Virus 2017: Beyond Two Show Dogs, Canine Influenza Virus 2017: Beyond Two Show Dogs, http://www.veterinarypracticenews.com/Canine-Influenza-Virus-Beyond-Two-Show-Dogs/?en_click=1&utm_campaign=editorial&utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter&utm_content=feature
  3. Canine Influenza, Canine Influenza, https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Reference/Pages/Canine-Influenza-Backgrounder.aspx
  4. Canine Influenza, Canine Influenza, https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Reference/Pages/Canine-Influenza-Backgrounder.aspx
  5. Canine Influenza, Canine Influenza, https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Reference/Pages/Canine-Influenza-Backgrounder.aspx
  6. Canine Influenza, Canine Influenza, https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Reference/Pages/Canine-Influenza-Backgrounder.aspx

Source: https://vitalanimal.com/dog-flu-vaccine-epidemic/

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Dying a Natural Death

Dog lying in old age, awaiting death


by Will Falconer, DVM – Austin TX


Watching my father die at home taught me a great deal about the process of dying and the goal of a natural death was born in my mind.  There is much Mother Nature has built in to dying that is inherently practical and comforting.

All my patients die in time.  That’s how life down here on the planet works.

It’s how they die that I’m most concerned with.  I’d like them all to have a soft landing.

When Death is De-Institutionalized

The best death is the one where my animal patient gets to die at home, surrounded by her family, smelling familiar smells, hearing familiar voices, in her safest of safe places.  More often than not, if that patient has been under homeopathic care for some time, that death happens without fanfare, without drama, and without euthanasia.  It can fairly be called a “natural death.”  That’s true even in most of my cancer patients, now the number one killer of dogs past middle age.

Of course, this rarely happens in humans these days, but hospice care and death at home is certainly an option worth researching.  The peace and completion that comes from dying at home is unrivaled by dying anywhere else, and stands in especially stark contrast to a hospital death.

Dad, Son, Death and Rebirth

I had the extreme good fortune to be in my dad’s home when he died.  He lived with my mom in Wisconsin, while I was a busy family man with a budding holistic vet practice on Maui.  When I got word that his time was near, I flew home so I might be there when he passed.

I had a close relationship with my dad, or at least as close as possible with an old Italian immigrant man who grew through an era where men mustn’t show too much emotion.  I was his last child, his third son, and the first to become a doctor, and that made him so proud.  He’d sent me to vet school and seeing the fruits of his investment slowly unfold over my professional years really seemed to tickle him.

Peter Falconer took great pause when I left practice after seven successful years for parts unknown.  I sold my share in the partnership I’d barely begun a few years prior, and figuratively leapt off the cliff, knowing only that a strong intuition told me there was something else for me to do.

It might not even be veterinary medicine.

That was difficult for him to hear.  It was a death for me, a huge transition from the familiarity of practice and its attendant success, and I suspect it rankled him nearly as much as it excited and later scared me.

After a year of exploration, the heartbreak of a failed marriage, and a stint at single parenting, it dawned on me that I was indeed a veterinarian at heart.  I just needed a new way to fulfill this seeming destiny.

Giving birth to my new holistic vet career gave Peter a chance to be proud all over again.  He could now tell his friends about his son, the vet who did acupuncture.  That was easier to relate to, likely, than his son who’d dropped out to explore metaphysical realms.

Bringing Home Natural Tools

When the prostate cancer caught up with Peter, it seeded his bones and brought his body a great deal of pain.  I’d retooled my career for a few years by then, so when I came to see him for my final visit, I brought my acupuncture needles and moxa.  My study of homeopathy was still a ways off.

Dad was on morphine regularly for the pain, which dulled him and dried him out. He’d opted out of chemo, it was too late for surgery, and hospice came to the house to help while we family members took turns with Dad, caught up on our own lives, and recounted stories of happier times.

On one sunny Summer afternoon after I’d been there for a couple of days, I asked, “Dad, would you like to try some acupuncture?  I think it could help you.”

He weakly consented, and the young doctor in me sprang into action.  I chose a few points known to enhance fluids, stimulate some immune response, and get chi moving in the hopes that I could help him be more comfortable.  It was a short treatment and he handled it really well, lying there in the rarely used dining room that had become his hospice ward.

When I finished, I pulled my needles out and he thanked me.  I left him for a spell while he rested, always in and out of that dozing place that came with dying and morphine.

When he rejoined the conscious world, I looked in on him again, and with a wan smile, he thanked me.  “I’m not so dry mouthed now, and I  feel better.  What was in those needles?” he joked.  I laughed and assured him that I’d only stimulated what was in him a bit, and that’s why he felt better.

It was a sweet gift to be able to offer a father who’d given me so much.

Lessons from Death

When Peter Falconer’s time got closer, the old man who’d come through Ellis Island at seven years of age, knowing but a few words of English, with his immigration papers pinned to his jacket, now stopped drinking.  His thirst just disappeared, and the hospice nurse told us this was a common part of the dying process.  Dad would not be hooked up to fluids to prolong the inevitable.

Amazingly, as he naturally dehydrated from not drinking, his pain lessened.  Enough so that his morphine could be stopped and he could be more present with us, free of its dulling influence on his mind.

I spent time by his bedside and time out in the yard that his death bed looked out on, alternately dozing on the chaise lounge and having conversations with my siblings and tending to my three year old son who’d made the trip with me.

The process of dying, observed first hand, was sad but enlightening.  Dad dozed, awakened, and dozed again.  Gradually, the dozing became longer and the time being present with us lessened.  I could see where this was going.  He looked comfortable, just tired and pulling in, the energy for interaction or even open eyes slowly waning from his body.

Peter Falconer left his body while mine dozed in the warm Wisconsin sun just outside his window.  I’d had my deepest, sobbing cry a couple of days earlier, and now, it was more just adjusting to his absence and helping where I could.  He’d lived a good life, touched many with his love, and, having gone the distance, he’d moved on.

He taught me what a natural death looks like.  A parting gift from a loving father.

Chloe Sleeps In, Never to Wake

One of my dog patients both taught and inspired her owner and I.  Chloe was a massive, good-natured Airedale, an intact female until she died of old age a couple of years back.  She lived free of  heartworm drugs and flea pesticides, had been vaccinated minimally early in her life, and had the benefits of a raw, meaty bone diet for many years.

Homeopathic prescribing had brought Chloe through pyometra and later, crippling arthritis that had reduced her to a literal crawl.  Carefully chosen remedies had mended her reproductive tract and brought her from a crawl to an enthusiastic run, with no sign of lameness.

As her time came nearer, it wasn’t all that obvious to Mary.  She preferred to sleep indoors, relegating guard duty to her life companion Lionheart, another massive Airedale who took his work seriously, while being good natured to those who belonged.

Chloe ate a bit less, slept a bit deeper.

One morning, Mary rose a bit earlier to tend to some farm chores and decided to let Chloe sleep in.  She laid, comfortably, on her own living room floor.  On returning an hour later to let her out, Chloe didn’t answer the call.  Her body laid there in her usual curled up sleeping position, but Chloe was gone.  She’d died a natural death, and Mary was both heartbroken and grateful it had been so easy for her.

Hows and Whens of Death

The How of death is in our hands, at least to a large extent.  I see repeatedly in homeopathic vet practice that patients can die gracefully, easily, peacefully.  The gift of homeopathy can often be applied during the transition if there’s roughness, to provide what one of my teachers calls “a soft landing.”  But more often than not, an animal who’s been naturally raised and under homeopathic care in the years prior to death may well not even need my help to pass.

Clearly a benefit lacking in those who’ve received suppressive drugs, pesticides, and multiple vaccinations.  I’m not sure when it’s too late to hope for a natural death in these guys, I haven’t watched long enough to clearly know.

The When of death is not in our hands.  This knowledge comes from the Veda, the original books of knowledge that are manifested each time a planet revives and comes back into existence.  The timeless Vedic understanding is that every soul upon taking birth, has a fixed death time.  Unknown, but immutable.

So, we focus on the how.  What choices are you making now for those in your care that make the how of dying a peaceful transition instead of a time of difficulty?

Postscript: as serendipity would have it, Annette wrote me saying her beloved diabetic cat had died at home with the help of euthanasia a few days back.  She reminds me that, if you have a dying animal, it’s good to set up a relationship with a mobile vet to have the possibility open for a home euthanasia.  Here in Austin, she was very happy with Compassionate Home Euthanasia with Dr. Maggie MacDonald.

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You can follow Dr. Falconer here.

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Dog Vaccinations Mindlessly Defended

Dorothy Sees Behind the Curtain

Did you watch ABC’s 20/20 piece (Nov 23 2013) on veterinarians, entitled Is Your Veterinarian Being Honest With You?

The veterinary profession was called out by one of our own on its practices of recommending unnecessary services that add to the bottom line.  Most noted were a couple I’ve been concerned with and have written about for years, dental cleanings and excessive, repeated vaccinations.

The ABC crew brought ostensibly healthy dogs in to several vets to see what they’d be told was “needed” for the dog’s health.  As expected, unnecessary procedures were recommended by some, like a full dental cleaning under anesthesia for a bit of tartar on a tooth.

More egregious and far more dangerous was the recommendation for more dog vaccinations in an adult dog vaccinated two years prior.  Without even asking the client, one vet was readying the vaccine syringes until called out by the guardian.  “Well, distemper is typically an annual vaccine,” was his lame reply, though he did stand down.

You Know More Than 20/20

The 20/20 producers had less information than most of you, dear readers.  They were buying the AVMA’s recommendation of vaccinating every three years vs. the common, costly and baseless practice of annual revaccination, called out over twenty years ago by veterinary immunologists.

Sure, every three years is less risky than annual revaccination, but that’s not good enough.  You know, by following along on this blog, that “once and done” is the rule for vaccinations, if your animal is vaccinated over four months of age.

The AVMA recommendation is pure waffling for the benefit of Dr. WhiteCoat’s bottom line.  Their logic likely goes like this:

If they have to give up the income normally coming from annual vaccinations, they can at least make something by vaccinating every three years.

How much immunology stands behind this policy?

Absolutely none.

Immunologists have known for well over 20 years that viral vaccines confer a very long duration of immunity (DOI), likely lifelong in most animals.

So, dig a little deeper, 20/20.  You’re not doing animal guardians any favors by regurgitating the AVMA guidelines of triennial vaccination “requirements.”  We’re calling you out on that one.

We know better.

My Pants Were Not Down! Close That Curtain!

More amusing is the response of Dr. WhiteCoat to the show.  He was seriously miffed that anyone would call him dishonest or accuse him of putting profit ahead of animal health!

Here’s some classic responses, gleaned from an industry online magazine, DVM.  The article seeks to arm Dr. WhiteCoat with answers to the presumably unhappy questions that will be coming in his practice doors about repeated dog vaccinations and more.

On the question of animals being unnecessarily vaccinated, three “experts” in conventional veterinary practice gave the following response that was offered as a stock reply to any clients confronting their vets over 20/20′s recent allegations:

What to say to clients
: “In deciding on a personalized vaccination protocol for your pet, we consider your pet’s unique lifestyle risks as well as local law, manufacturers’ directions and established guidelines from organizations like the American Veterinary Medical Association, the American Animal Hospital Association and the American Association of Feline Practitioners.”

“Personalized vaccination protocols?”  Who are you kidding??  Do you really think an educated consumer of veterinary medicine is going to believe you’re customizing vaccination recommendations when you vaccinated yearly for so many years?

“Local laws?”  There’s only a law for one vaccine, fellas, and most states now say rabies every three years.  Where does that leave you with all those distemper combo wombo shots you’ve been giving annually?  There are not now and have never been laws about other vaccinations, yet you’ve given the others repeatedly to countless animals for at least the last 25 years.

“Manufacturers’ recommendations?”  That’s the lamest excuse of all!  The manufacturers labeled their vaccines for annual repetition based solely on profit potential.  Did you ever ask the reps selling you the vaccines to see the data that would indicate immunity falls off on day 364 and needs “boosting” on day 365?

Of course you didn’t.  You merely used their profit hungry labels to justify your repetition that repeatedly weakened animals’ health but added to your bottom line.

Vaccinations and Longer Life Spans?

More, from the same article: “Vaccines are crucial.  Vaccines explain why we now have cats and dogs who live into their late teens or even 20s.  I’ve seen the life expectancy of the average Labrador retriever go from 9 to 15 or 16 years of age in my career.” (Dr. Downing)

This is an old saw, often trotted out in human vaccine debates as well.  It turns out, if you look at human statistics, that all the bad diseases of the old days were well in decline before the vaccines ever hit the population.  Why?  The biggest reason was separating sewage from drinking water.  Underpants even played a role.

I suspect we are not seeing anything approaching 15-16 years of age as an “average” in Labs today.  I’m sure not seeing it.  In 33 years of practice, I’ve seen quite the opposite, in fact.

Most often, I’m seeing animals becoming chronically ill earlier in life than they ever used to become. Arthritis and hypothyroidism in dogs under 4-5 years of age?  Animals plagued with horrible allergies that, on testing, show almost nothing they are not allergic to?  Dogs tearing holes in their coats and eating their toes?  When they start this at age three, what kind of life do they have to look forward to, let alone the life of their caregivers?

The Buck Stops Here (at the tip of the needle)

The blame for this is to be laid squarely at the feet of the vaccinators who had you believing for years that you were a good pet owner if you came in for the recommended shots every time you got a postcard saying “due.” Allergies to fleas and foods and plants is nothing but a confused immune system attacking the body it’s housed in, and nothing confuses an immaculately designed immune system like the injection of viruses, bypassing all the defenses that took millions of years to be built.

No, we’re not buying it, Dr. WhiteCoat.  20/20 may not have had the whole story, but they got a lot of it right.  We can only hope there’ll be some humbling that comes from this expose, and the self examination that allows thoughtful people to change their ignorant ways.

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About Will Falconer, DVM

Dr. Will Falconer is a Certified Veterinary Homeopath based in Austin, Texas with a global practice treating all species with the most holistic medicine ever.  His latest thoughts and useful information can be found on his blog at VitalAnimal.com

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Dog Vaccines Mindlessly Defended

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Is your ‘holistic’ vet really holistic? A fresh look at the health risks associated with pet vaccines.


With so many vets out there marketing themselves as holistic these days, how can you really know for sure whether or not the vet you choose really is holistic and has the best interests of your pet in mind?

Holistic veterinarian Will Falconer, D.V.M., who owns and operates the highly informative website Vital Animal, The Natural Path, addresses this question in a recent blog posting entitled “Vaccines and Vets: Is Your Holistic Vet Really Holistic?”   In this powerful commentary, Falconer describes his journey from being a “holistic” vet in name only to becoming a truly holistic vet who learned the errors of his ways and corrected them.

As implied by the title of Falconer’s posting, the primary issue at hand has to do with pet vaccines, which many vets, including many “holistic” vets, insist must be administered over and over again for optimal pet health.  For years, Falconer held this same fallacious stance, believing that pets had to be vaccinated at yearly in order to keep up to date and in good health, that is, until he learned otherwise following some classes he took for his continuing education.

Falconer was enrolled in the very first Professional Course in Veterinary Homeopathy at the Pitcairn Institute of Veterinary Homeopathy in Eugene, Oregon, back in 1992 when he first learned that, contrary to popular belief, annual pet vaccines are not only ineffective but also dangerous.  As he would quickly learn, pet vaccines, like human vaccines, are capable of actually creating disease, which could explain why many more pets these days are developing serious illnesses like cancer.

“Here I was, surrounded by other holistic veterinarians, some at it much longer than I, and our instructor, Dr. Richard Pitcairn, was showing us case after case illustrating the harm that was coming from vaccination,” recalls Falconer about his awakening.   “More significantly, he was also showing us that sick animals usually didn’t get better without, at some point in their treatment, receiving a vaccinosis remedy.”

Many pets are already vaccine damaged, and injecting them with more vaccines only exacerbates the problem

Vaccinosis, explains Falconer, is a term originally hatched by Dr. Compton Burnett, M.D., back in 1884, to describe the health damage caused by vaccines.  And the remedy, it turns out, is typically not a general treatment but rather an individualized one that is customized to undo the original damage caused.  Naturally, the same approach can be taken with vaccine-injured pets, that is, if pet owners are even aware of the fact that their sick animals might be vaccine damaged.

With this newfound understanding, Falconer quickly realized that annual pet re-vaccination is essentially a scam that puts pets at further risk of health damage.  In truth, annual pet vaccination is merely a way for vets to maintain a steady cash flow and has nothing to do with actually keeping pets healthy.  This is not to say that vets are out there intentionally harming animals, but this is precisely what they are doing, whether they realize it or not.

Unfortunately, many of the “holistic” vets Falconer has encountered in the years since have willfully ignored these eyeopening findings and continued to administer annual pet vaccines anyway.  Even after attending a subsequent meeting of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association in which it was clearly delineated that annual pet vaccines can lead to hypothyroidism and other chronic diseases in pets, many of the “holistic” vets in attendance expressed their intention to continue administering them regardless of the facts.  Most of the “holistic” vets polled in more recent surveys have indicated similar sentiments.

“As you set about navigating what seem like perfectly clear waters on your way to a vital animal, keep your eyes open for these dangerous attitude reefs,” writes Falconer.   “My profession is bemoaning the fact that veterinary visits are falling, yet refusing to step up to a responsible position on a damaging, useless procedure: repeating vaccinations throughout your animal’s life.”

Please read Will Falconer’s full blog post here: http://vitalanimal.com

source of this article here.

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“I Was Politely Ignored by My Vet”

Hey, wait! I know this is real!

Hey, wait! I know this is real!

When you see something causing illness in your animal, and you’ve seen it happen before, you know in your heart of hearts that it would be best to avoid this thing next time, right?

You don’t want to do anything to make your animal ill.  That’s just basic, isn’t it? This animal is in your care, day in and day out.  Who is better than you to know when something causes your animal harm?

The Power of Careful Observation

You, of all people, have the best bead on what “normal” looks like, because you live close to this animal, feed her, groom her, walk her, play with her, maybe even sleep with her.  You also know, without blood tests or radiographs or ultrasounds when something is wrong, when abnormal appears.  It’s obvious.  After living long with normal, abnormal is easy to observe.

If something preceded abnormal, you’d also be aware of that.

“Last night, when that thunderstorm was approaching, my Hermione really got nervous.”

“Whenever I give her the monthly heartworm pills, she goes off her food for a couple of meals and sleeps more.”

“We had way too much fun in the lake yesterday, and today, Sophie’s really acting sore.”

When that something that preceded abnormal came at the hands of your veterinarian, who would be the first person you’d want to know about this, so it’s never done again?

Your vet, of course!   And if Dr. WhiteCoat shines you on?

Here’s a sad tale from a reader that came to my inbox just this week:

“I adopted an English Setter, she has terrible allergies.  My vet referred her to dematologist and she has been on shots for 1 1/2 years, doing okay.  Yearly shots, allergies went crazy. When I tried to bring up shots as possible reason, they politely ignored me.  Just gave Heartguard, major upset stomach.  She had tapeworms and when I gave her the treatment from vet, she was very sick for days, they said it was not the tapeworm treatment

My question, can she just have a problem with chemicals being introduced into her body.  I have spent thousands of dollars and feel hopeless.  I am afraid not to do as my vet says but I feel I am harming her.

My other 3 dogs do not have these reactions.

Are there natural alternatives for her?

So worried. Linda”

My heart went out to this poor woman in equal measure to my heart rate rising, as I read this.  Politely ignored?  Denied what you’ve repeatedly seen, with your own eyes in your own animal?  That’s amazing hubris on the part of the vets.

What’s a Responsible Animal Owner to Do?

You’ve got two choices, as I see it:

  1. Ask your veterinarian to look deeper.  Reconsider.  Research further.
  2. Fire your veterinarian and seek another who listens to you, respects your observations, and is willing to work with you.

[Hint: you may want to try a homeopathic vet, who often takes an hour or more for an initial intake, and takes notes of your observations! I advised Linda that yes, “sensitive to medicines” is a very real symptom and would help a homeopathic vet cure her animal.]

This week coincidentally, I also saw an email on our homeopathic vet list from a colleague:

“I was at a (hospital) management group meeting a number of months ago.  The speaker was a new grad and he was talking about how to make more $$.  He kept emphasizing vaccines.  I bit my tongue cause I felt sorry for this really nice young gentleman who was testing his talk on our group.  Finally, when the discussion was opened to the room of my colleagues, I couldn’t take it anymore.  I mentioned “allergies” as a sequelae to vaccination.  Everyone agreed they had never seen this happen.  I asked them if they were LOOKING FOR THE CONNECTION!

They all agreed they weren’t.”

When To Jump Ship

Do you have an allegiance to your vet because you’ve always gone to him?  Do you feel the need to maintain that relationship even at the expense of your animal’s well being?  Are you paying to have your valuable input in your animal’s health care ignored?

What’s wrong with this picture?

This may simply be codependence.  Like staying in that abusive relationship, waiting for the guy’s heart of gold to shine forth.  You know it’s in there, you saw a glimmer way back when.

But, what ever this is at the heart of staying on in a relationship that’s making your animal ill and you broke and hopeless and worried, the most obvious (though perhaps not the easiest) solution is to:

Kick the bum out!

I’d hope none of you would continue to pay someone to make your animal ill.  You’d do well to seek veterinary care elsewhere, and the sooner the better.

We know from the immunologists that repeatedly vaccinating your animal throughout life flat out don’t work.

And, we know from those who care to look for the relationship, like Linda saw for herself, those samevaccinations make animals ill.   Allergies are one of the commonest aftermaths of vaccination.

So, repeatedly paying for something that A. doesn’t work and B. causes illness sounds pretty crazy, doesn’t it?

Heartworm drugs are pesticides, and can make your animals ill, even kill them with autoimmune disease.  And topical flea tubes all come with warnings to not get their pesticides on you.  Or your children.  Or your clothing.  And conventional vets recommend and sell these by the boat load.

Why more animals don’t react like Linda’s dog is a real puzzle.

Looking for Connections

As my colleague observed above, unless you’re looking for it, you could miss some really valuable correlations.  Illness after vaccinations, especially itchy skin or inflamed ears from allergies, often occur about a month after vaccination.  Weeks after the event.  If you weren’t considering that a possibility, how would you ever see it?

But Linda saw it.  More than once.  And homeopathic vets in practice, looking back carefully at the histories of their allergic patients, also see it, time and again.  If your vet doesn’t, why doesn’t he?

Dr. WhiteCoat needs to start looking or you need to start looking for a new vet.  Simple as that.  Denial of what you see and denial of what other professionals know, like immunologists, let alone holistic vets, is grounds for divorce.

08/25/2013  by Read Comments

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Shifting the Burden of Proof: The Precautionary Principle

Things Are Not Always as They Seem

Sparky's swollen lips: cancer

When Sparky’s lips started swelling on the left side of his face, his concerned owners thought he was probably stung by an insect.  Who wouldn’t?  Dogs will be dogs…  Both lips were getting bright red and puffy.  He was taken to their veterinarian, and Dr. WhiteCoat gave the most favored combination of drugs in any conventional practice:

Antibiotics and steroids. [Kill all bacteria!  Stop all inflammation!]  Sigh.

Sparky’s lips got better.

But then they swelled again.

More drugs, he was better.  The drugs stopped, and Sparky got worse again.  Damn.  This can’t go on, we’re getting nowhere.

Finally, a biopsy revealed something no one had guessed: this was cancer.

Whoa.  What’s going on here??

Come into My Lab-OR-atory, Bwahahaha haaa!

Sparky, like many of his cohorts in the animal kingdom who are owned by humans, had been part of a vast science experiment that has been going on for generations.  Finally, at 13 years of age, the consequences were coming home to roost, and they were serious.  Life threatening, in fact.

Homeopaths have associated runaway tissue growth with vaccinations since Jenner’s day, when cowpox was being injected into people in the hope of preventing smallpox.  We see it today most clearly in the cat, where it’s actually named Feline Vaccine-Associated Sarcoma, or VAS.  No scientist questions this: it is caused by the vaccines.  End of story.  It’s malignant and the cat dies from it.

This vast science experiment has been the overuse of vaccinations in animals for the last three decades, and Sparky is now a victim of this greed driven practice.  The immunologists have made it clear for over twenty years that repeatedly vaccinating animals is both unnecessary and doesn’t work.

We are seeing animals coming down with chronic, “old animal diseases” at a younger age than ever before, as this experiment continues year on year.  Examples I’ve seen in over 30 years of practice include arthritis, hypothyroidism, and even cancer.

Human health is seeing a similar decline, as children are now being seen in larger numbers with usually adult diseases, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and joint pain.  Their experiment is only somewhat different from the animal version, in that societal advertising and standards of nutrition have slid precipitously closer to junk food being the most affordable and desirable food on the planet.

Well, maybe kids and dogs are not so different.  Sparky was being fed Science Diet, aka “expensive junk food” (do some label detective work if you have any doubts about that).

Our Hero Enters, Stage Left

Enter a knight in shining armor: the precautionary principle.  In simple terms, we’ve used this principle for years, in the form of “be careful out there,” and “look before you leap.”  In medicine, it’s “First, Do No Harm.

It was elegantly stated in a world wide conference that took place in my hometown of Racine, Wisconsin in January of 1998.

In summary, the precautionary principle is this:

“When an activity raises threats of harm to the environment or human health, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically.”

Just slip “or animal health” in there, and you’ve got a very sound principle to follow in your pursuit of achieving your vital animal, the one who avoids getting sick even in her latter years and shines with lustrous health and balanced energy till her time on the planet is up.

An elegant statement of one of the tenets of this principle is made by writer Peter Montague:

“The burden of proof of harmlessness of a new technology, process, activity, or chemical lies with the proponents, not with the general public.”

Vaccinators: Belly Up to the Precautionary Principal Bar

So, Dr. WhiteCoat, you want to continue these vaccinations in my animal beyond 6-12 months of age?  You want to do this annually?  Prove to me there’s efficacy and safety in that, and I’ll put my animal on the table.  No proof, you just cap that needle, give him his physical exam, and we’ll be on our way.

What an empowering stance!  Why should you, as an animal owner, bear the burden of disproving a health recommendation?  Your vet, doctor, neighborhood chemical manufacturing company, and nuclear waste dumper needs to be the one to prove that the activity benefits and does not harm your dog, cat, neighborhood, or planet.

Easy Words of Precaution

If you feel too shy to take Dr. WhiteCoat to task on this, here’s a simple phrase you can use, and one I’d practice regularly before going in for any veterinary visit:

  • “I’m going to think about this, but not act on it today.  I’ll get back to you if I decide I want this done.”

This will always be an acceptable exit strategy for any routine procedure, in a non-life threatening situation like an annual exam.

If you’re braver, you might add,

  • “Please outline for me the risks vs benefits of this procedure, and why you feel it’s in my animal’s best interests.”

Don’t Wait: Prevent the Damage That Conventional “Prevention” Can Cause!

Sparky is under my homeopathic care now, and is getting high doses of transfer factor.  We’ve got our fingers crossed that we can “wake up his reactionary forces” to fight this cancer.

Over on Facebook, a reader saw the effects of a vaccination causing runaway allergic itching:

“I must thank you for another fact I learned through this.  My English Setter has awful allergies and does take allergy shots and has been doing great.  All of a sudden her allergies went crazy and I was trying to pinpoint what happened, now I know, she had her yearly shots.  I discovered this while reading your material and I have my answer.”

I replied, “What was the timing between vaccinations and crazy allergies?  I often see it in 3-4 weeks…”

Linda’s reply, “She had shots end of April, by end of May,  I was seeing the signs of problems and has not gotten better only worse.  I have been frantic trying to figure out what had happened…  The yearly shots are the only thing that has happened.  I kept thinking, she was fine when I took her for her checkup.”



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Avoid Getting Your Animal in This Profit Machine


My dog is in here somewhere!  Help!!

Here’s a great business model (but a good one to not be a part of!):

  1. Sell a product, in fact, better yet, give it away in the package plan you sell so it looks like an amazing bargain. Brand the plan with the word “Wellness.”
  2. Tie into a profession that’s widely looked up to as purveyors of animal health who fully buy in to this product. So much so, that they push it as well, and make their living by pushing it.
  3. When that product creates long term health problems in those who partake, sell a specialized product that addresses them. Make it expensive, “scientific” and high tech, and have a line of that product sold by the animal health profession itself. Add to their bottom line. See #2.
  4. Claim product #1 has nothing to do with creating disease, (and have the profession widely decry the very idea of it — “It prevents disease!”) but explain how #3 will cure the disease (that it’s created).
  5. Smile all the way to the bank. You’ve made money creating a problem and “fixing” the same problem!

Variations of this business model live and thrive in many circles of society now, but one that affects you, dear pet owner, is purveyed by the Mars company. It sunk in over the past week, since I posted about their “fix” of selling chicken feathers as protein in their version of the best dog food: Royal Canin.

Oh, and product #1?  Vaccinations.  For everything imaginable.

Unraveling the Scheme

So, who’s the Mars Company?  Purveyors of diabetes and cavities, through their Milky Way, Skittles, M & M’s and such.  Yes, they are a candy company, at least that’s where they got their start.  One famous for their secrecy.

Mars branched out in 2007 to own Banfield, The Pet Hospital. selling a “Wellness Plan” that includes “free vaccinations!” when you sign up.  Often twice a year.  Ahem.

You know that frequency of vaccination is excessive, unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past twenty years.  And, you know it’s risky.  But that the profession here, conventional veterinary medicine, runs on its profits and Dr. WhiteCoat isn’t going to stop pushing vaccinations if he has any say in the matter.  Which he does.  He can do anything he wishes in the name of “professional judgment.”

And Banfield is a collection of corporate Dr. WhiteCoats, who vaccinate repeatedly in the name of “wellness.”

Now, through Mars’ subsidiary, Royal Canin, they’ll sell you a high end, laboratory made diet with this “novel protein” source: chicken feathers.  To cure the allergies they’ve created by repeatedly vaccinating every animal that comes through the doors of the Banfield machine.

Is your head starting to hurt, yet?

Drop Out, Quick!

You are the only one calling the shots (sorry, bad metaphor. Wait: maybe not) for your animal’s health.  They don’t vote.  They eat what you offer, go to the vet when you say they’re going, and take whatever you agree to in the name of “prevention” or treatment.

I submit that, unless you are keeping your eyes open and are willing to think outside the medicine box, your animals will become health statistics.  If you follow this brand of “prevention,” it’s not a matter of “if my animals get sick” but rather, “when.”

I’d hate to see you visiting your vet because you’ve got an allergic pet, one of the top three reasons the average consumer brought their animal for veterinary services in 2012.  Because that’s a long, suffering road, with no cure in sight, if you stick to what Dr. WhiteCoat recommends.

[There are better options, if you get stuck in this machine.]

Be smarter than that.  Choose your natural path carefully, eyes wide open, ears wide open, and learning all you can before making health decisions for your animals.

Some Brilliant Words for Dr. WhiteCoat

When you are in for an exam, and something is recommended to you, especially more vaccinations in one already vaccinated, try these words out:

“Doctor, let me get back to you on that. I need to do my research before I decide.”

Wow. Did you see how you just took control of that situation? Powerful stuff.


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