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Holistic Pet Care, a Growing Trend .... Natural pet health options for injured cat
by N J Howell
I'm so happy to witness the emergence of more and more companies with pet care lines that are natural. Some companies even create entire product lines for animal lovers who seek natural supplementation for their animal friends. Although natural remedies are not intended to replace any needed veterinarian care, there are many holistic vets who know how well they can work so check for a holistic vet in your area. A good place to start, to locate a holistic vet in your area, is by visiting the website for the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association. This healing question regarded an injured cat and the use of the health supplement MSM. Related Article: Separation anxiety in pets
Question on cat health: My cat has been diagnosed with torn ligaments in his knees. What is the best course of action in terms of supplements and/or otherwise. I have had wonderful results, personally, with MSM - would this be appropriate for my cat? Is there something that is better for cat health probmes from injury? Would massage or thermal treatments help my cat?
Healing Facilitation response: First of all, I must preface this answer with a disclaimer. I am not a veterinarian. My goal at Ask A Healer is education, not diagnosis or treatment. I am assuming you have had your cat checked out by a vet, and that's how the diagnosis of torn ligaments came about.
What I can provide here is educational information for you to explore, including natural pet care information that may be beneficial. Pet health supplements are often suggested by holistic vets, for both cat health and dog health, so maybe you are lucky enough to have found a veterinarian that recognizes the value of nutritional supplementation.
I can, with confidence, recommend products like Pet Calm from Native Remedies and Pet Alive, because of my long association with that company but there are certainly many natural pet supplements out there so doing some research will be good. This company has a very extensive natural pet care line.
Is MSM safe for animals? Again, I am not a veterinarian and, not knowing the weight or age of your pet, do not know how to suggest dosage for an animal but I have certainly seen pet products that contain MSM and since it is a natural occurring ingredient in all living organisms, I would assume the correct dosage for your cat would be safe. Call a holistic vet for dosage and further instructions.
The farmer's coop where I live sells it, in granular form, for horses with injuries. Your vet may know about MSM in pet supplements and may be able to provide information on MSM dosage and a good source to order pure MSM. I would try to find additive-free MSM with no binders or flow agents added.
Personally, what might be easier and would eliminate concerns about dosage would be to just order from the available pet supplements with MSM that are already available online. Look for a formula that is specifically for cats, since someone would have worked out a good dosage in the process of creating the formula.
Is Massage Helpful for Animal Injuries? You had asked whether massage or thermal heat therapy would be beneficial. I believe regular massage can be just as beneficial for animals as for humans. Not only does massage increase circulation to injured areas (assuming the injury is healed sufficiently for massage not to be contraindicated - check with your vet) but it is also relaxing to animals and humans alike. I believe animals experience stress with pain, just as we do, so therapeutic massage could be beneficial for healing, yes.
Thermal Heat for Animal Injuries: I found reference to the use of a ThermalCare heat wrap for a dog with injuries, and they used the same heat wrap that is used for humans. You could call the company that makes the thermal heat wraps and see if they know whether using them for your cat would be safe.
You might check into infrared heat options too but there are some contraindications if your pet has health issues so I'd ask about human contraindications and assume the same for animals in this case. Infrared heat, which is a form of hyperthermia, is great for pain. Farmers use infrared heat lamps for animal warming too so an infrared heat lamp, properly installed where your cat sleeps, might be a consideration for winter.
In addition, you might check with your vet to see if they have access to a good source for an infrared heat gun. If not, accupuncturists often carry them. The infrared tool helps to direct the heat directly to the area of injury.
Pet Health Care Disclaimer: The natural pet care information contained in this article is not intended to take the place of veterinarian care that may be needed for your pet. The good news is that there are a lot of holistic vets around, who recognize the benefit of natural health care while still medically trained to help your pet heal and recover. Please consult with your veterinarian on matters relating to animal health, preventative pet health care and wellness.