On November 2, 2017, the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) called for a ban on veterinarians offering homeopathic and alternative medicines.
If this doesn’t concern you, it should. Here’s why …
The Real Reason Vets Are Banning Holistic Medicine
Today, the concept of preventive medicine would be laughable if it wasn’t so tragically misguided. Most vets today believe dogs need the following to be healthy:
- Major surgery to remove their reproductive organs (and the important hormones they control)
- Vaccines (with ingredients like thimerosal, aluminum, MSG, formaldehyde and foreign animal protein)
- Neurotoxic drugs (these meds kill fleas and ticks by devastating their nervous systems … and your dog’s)
- Poisons that kill intestinal worms
- Processed, starch-filled diets filled with cancer-causing mycotoxins (molds) and poor quality ingredients (nearly all commercial pet food is so completely devoid of nutrition that it relies on a combo of synthetic vitamins, minerals and amino acids called a premix to make it pass AAFCO standards).
Isn’t it ironic that vets feel major surgery, drugs and chemicals are the key to good health?
Pet owners are starting to believe that good diet and staying away from toxic products is the key to good health … and that’s creating a divide that’s ultimately driving the RCVS position on alternative medicine.
Here’s what’s happening …
Vets Aren’t Feeling The Love (And Why Should They?)
In 2015, Banfield Pet Hospitals discovered vet visits were declining … we were visiting vets less often. So they analyzed more than 2 million online conversations to see why pet owners were going to the vet less often.
Here are the top 3 reasons they found for declining visits:
1. Interactions with veterinarians are not meeting expectations and are seen as transactional
Relationship building is no longer a priority – the entire process has become a transaction. That means, when pet owners consider the overall wellness of their pets, they also turn to groomers, boarders, daycare providers, breeders and trainers for advice.
2. Preventive care is a decreasing priority
The pet population is growing, and pet owners continue to invest in their pets’ overall well-being. However, Banfield found that pets are spending less time at the veterinarian than they used to, and preventive care appears to be a low priority for pet owners. But just because we’re staying away from the vet’s office doesn’t mean preventive care is a low priority for us. It’s just that …
3. Veterinarians and pet owners differ on their definition of preventive care
While veterinarians designate preventive care as including vaccines, spay/neuter, and parasite control, pet owners say it should include diet, exercise, care, play, emotional well-being (and staying away from the toxins the vets want us to use).
So, in a nutshell, pet owners have become tired of the allergies, the autoimmune disease, the kidney failure and joint disease. And we’ve started to look for a better way. We’re focusing on health and we’re focusing on alternative medicines that allow us to do that, including homeopathy and herbs.
But vets don’t like that …
Mass Exodus: Why Vets Should Blame Themselves
We’re going to the vet less often probably because we trust them less. We don’t trust the low quality “veterinary” foods they push, we’re learning that they’re vaccinating our dogs too often and we’re showing up less often because of this.
Ultimately, vets have two options:
- They can help us find the answers (and healthy dogs) we’re looking for or;
- They can attack the choices we’re making.
Sadly they’ve chosen to limit our healthcare choices by choosing the latter … and that does nothing as far as building trust.
The RCVS defends their ban on homeopathy and holistic medicine with …
“Homeopathy exists without a recognized body of evidence for its use. Furthermore, it is not based on sound scientific principles. In order to protect animal welfare, we regard such treatments as being complementary rather than alternative to treatments for which there is a recognised evidence base or which are based in sound scientific principles. It is vital to protect the welfare of animals committed to the care of the veterinary profession and the public’s confidence in the profession that any treatments not underpinned by a recognised evidence base or sound scientific principles do not delay or replace those that do.”
Simply put, veterinarians feel that homeopathy and other forms of holistic medicine aren’t evidence based and they don’t protect the welfare of animals as well as their own treatments do.
Let’s take a look at these two concerns and how valid they are (here’s a hint: they’re not) …
Claim #1: Veterinary Medicine Must Be Evidence Based
“Evidence based” means that data from randomized controlled studies tells us whether a treatment will work and is safe. And vets feel homeopathy and many other holistic treatments don’t meet this requirement.
The issue with this claim though is that there’s plenty of evidence based research showing that homeopathy works (even though it’s hard to prove this with such an individualized form of medicine). Despite the RCVS’ claims, there’s a ton of evidence that homeopathy works and is evidence based.
Here are just 5 studies showing significant promise (and you can find more on extraordinary medicine.org):
- Homeopathy was more effective and safer than vaccines for lepto
In one of the largest studies on homeopathy ever, involving 2.3 million people in Cuba, the infection rate for leptospirosis dropped to nearly zero and Cuba has now replaced vaccination with homeopathy at a fraction of the cost.
- Homeopathy saved more lives for those with severe sepsis
A 2005 study of 67 patients with severe sepsis over 180 days found that 76% of the patients treated with homeopathy were still alive, compared to just 50% of the placebo patients.
- Homeopathy saved breast cancer patients
A 2010 study in oncology found four homeopathic remedies caused cancer cell death just like chemotherapy, but without damaging normal cells.
- Homeopathy made colds go away faster
A comparative study of over 1,500 patients in 6 different European countries found that the response rate of homeopathically treated patients was 82.6% – significantly higher than in the conventional group.
- Homeopathy helped long-term chronic disease
A six-year study of 6,544 patients treated homeopathically showed that 50% had major improvement in inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, menopausal problems, migraines, eczema and asthma.
So Who’s Cheating?
Danny Chambers, who is behind the recent RCVS position says,“Vets who practice homeopathy should not be permitted to use their professional standing to promote its validity. They should not be allowed to charge a fee for something that has been proven to be ineffective.”
Wait a minute! If that’s true, there’s a big problem with conventional veterinary medicine that we need to look at.
A 2007 study in the British Medical Journal looked at 3,000 common medical treatments and found that 2/3 of the drugs and treatments vets recommend have little or no evidence behind them either.
A staggering 50% of conventional medicine has no known mode of action, while another 12% is either harmful or ineffective. Only 11% of conventional medical treatments were found to actually be beneficial!
Acetaminophen (the active ingredient in Tylenol) has no known mode of action. Anaesthetic … nobody knows how that works either.
Does that mean we should stop using anesthetic for surgery? Of course not!
But it doesn’t mean we should stop using homeopathy either.
And, if vets shouldn’t be allowed to charge a fee for something that has been proven to be ineffective, then you should ask for your money back if your dog has been vaccinated for the core vaccines (parvo, distemper and adenovirus) after 16 weeks of age or without a negative titer test. There is zero evidence that any dog needs to be revaccinated once he’s protected … and there’s oodles of evidence showing that he’s likely protected for life.[Related: Is your dog being vaccinated too often? Download our free guide and find out how many unnecessary vaccines your dog gets (and how they can hurt him)]
Has your vet ever recommended Tramadol? Many painkillers like this have never been tested on dogs. In fact, the majority of drugs we use for our dogs and cats have never been tested on them (such as Tamiflu).
Tramadol is an opioid (like morphine) and its painkilling effects in people depend largely on its conversion in the body to a substance called M1, which dogs’ bodies don’t seem to do all that well. Yet vets prescribe it all the time because NSAIDs tend to destroy the kidneys and liver.
So vets are blocking your access to homeopathy, while calling you in every year or three years for your dog’s vaccination … which has no scientific basis at all. Or they’re giving him drugs that likely have no known mode of action, are unlikely to be beneficial or have never been tested on animals and are just assumed to work.
Doesn’t that sound kind of hypocritical?
Of course it is! But then again, when veterinary associations such as the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) allow their vaccination task force and vaccination guidelines to be sponsored by vaccine manufacturers, it probably makes sense that they allow the baseless practice of over-vaccination to continue but limit homeopathy.
Look at the bottom of the most recent vaccination guidelines from the AAHA …
Clearly, we don’t influence veterinary medicine … their sponsors do. It’s the only explanation for their resistance to embrace holistic medicine when their own treatments aren’t exactly working or evidence based either.
The difference is, their treatments are patented and that makes their “sponsors” happy.
And on that note, here’s another reason vets are trying to stop us from leaving them and finding holistic alternatives …
Claim #2: Veterinary Medicine Must Protect Animals
The other claim against homeopathic and holistic medicine is that conventional veterinary care shouldn’t be replaced because it’s vital to veterinarians to protect the welfare of animals.
Really? How’s that working out for us?
In humans, prescription drugs are the third leading cause of death today. The system we have for researching, approving, marketing and using drugs is totally broken, but vets are banning homeopathy because they claim homeopathy is harmful while they continue to rely on drugs.
The result? Dogs are dying younger.
The Kennel Club in the UK releases reports called Pedigree Breed Health Surveys on tens of thousands of purebred dogs. In 2004, the average reported lifespan in dogs was 11 years 3 months. In 2014, just 10 years later, the average lifespan in dogs decreased to just 10 years.
In just 10 years, the average dog’s lifespan has decreased by 11%.
Now, because this was done on purebred dogs, the rescue folks used it as an opportunity to attack purebred dogs … but this has little to nothing to do with genetics it seems. A 2013 study at UC Davis reviewed medical records from nearly 30,000 purebred and mixed breed dogs and found that mixed breed dogs were more likely to suffer cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) tears and were equally likely to suffer from many of the same diseases that affect purebred dogs.
And what’s killing our dogs?
A 2011 study at the University of Georgia found that cancer kills 37% of dogs whereas the 2004 Pedigree Breed Health Survey found that only 27% of dogs died from cancer.
It’s abundantly clear that veterinary medicine is killing our dogs, just like it’s killing us.
And that’s why we’re looking for alternatives … what we’re doing isn’t working. What we’re doing is wrong.
Why Aren’t Vets Helping Us?
The rate of cancer in dogs increases dramatically every year. Every year dogs are dying younger and younger.
And while vets are waging a war on homeopathic medicine, we’re on the front lines dealing with our sick and damaged dogs. We deal with the allergies, we deal with the kidney failure and we deal with the cancer. And we feel regret and remorse.
Unfortunately, instead of helping dogs live longer healthier lives, which is literally their job, vets are actively blocking our access to alternative medicine when it’s become abundantly clear that what we view as veterinary medicine today is making our dogs sick and worse, killing them.
Instead of doing better, they’re just trying to block our escape route.
Your dog is about 37% likely to die of cancer today. Tomorrow that risk will be 40%.
Given that, how bad could homeopathy really be?
And that’s how veterinary medicine has lost its soul, along with our trust. That’s why we go to the vet less often.
Join The Movement
If you would like to help fight against the RCVS’ proposed ban on homeopathy and holistic medicine, you can sign the petition on this page: www.thepetitionsite.com.
You can also join the movement by sharing how homeopathy has helped your dog on the Dogs Naturally Facebook page.