Educational Articles

Alternative Therapies

  • Stem cells are unspecialized cells that are capable of renewing themselves though cell division. Under certain conditions, they can become a specific tissue or organ cell. Stem cell therapy commonly refers to the process of placing stem cells from the body into diseased or damaged tissues, such as a torn ligament in the knee or perhaps an arthritic joint. This process is often referred to as regenerative medicine. Adult stem cells are capable of repair and regeneration of various tissues because they have the potential to differentiate into specialized cells of an organ. The most common use of stem cell therapies has been in the treatment of osteoarthritis in dogs and cats. Currently, there are no current guidelines with respect to stem cell therapy. Stem therapy should only be performed by a veterinarian with special training, who understands the benefits and limits of this therapy. It is important to have realistic expectations as positive outcomes cannot be guaranteed.

  • A supplement is a concentrated nutrient source that is added to a basic diet for either a nutritional or a therapeutic effect. There is a great deal of confusion that surrounds the terminology of food additives, and sometimes terms are used interchangeably.

  • A supplement is a concentrated nutrient source that is added to a basic diet for either a nutritional or a therapeutic effect. There is a great deal of confusion that surrounds the terminology of food additives, and sometimes terms are used interchangeably.

  • A supplement is a concentrated nutrient source that is added to a basic diet for either a nutritional or a therapeutic benefit. There is a great deal of confusion that surrounds the terminology of food additives, and sometimes terms are used interchangeably.

  • An epidemic of obesity in both humans and companion animals has spawned a large trade in weight loss supplements. Some, such as those which contain ephedrine, have been eliminated from the market in the United States and Canada due to potential adverse cardiac effects.

  • Whole food supplements, or glandular therapies, are supplements made from glands, organs or tissues from healthy animals. These supplements may be administered as whole fresh tissue or as tissue extracts.

  • Herbs are plants that contain ingredients with active therapeutic properties. These active ingredients may be present in the whole plant or only in a specific part.

  • Homeopathy is a distinct philosophy of medicine that has its roots in eighteenth century Germany, and subsequently spread to Europe, India, Australia, South America, the United States, and Canada. The underlying basis of homeopathy is the principle that 'like cures like', or that a substance that is capable, in toxic doses, of producing a set of symptoms is also capable, in much lower doses, of curing the same set of symptoms regardless of their perceived cause.

  • Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a complete system of medicine developed in China. Its roots are in writings and practices which were developed over millennia.

  • The underlying philosophy of all alternative medical therapies is the 'holistic' approach, in which the patient is treated as a whole being rather than as a collection of organs and parts. The patient is treated as an individual rather than as a diagnosis, and the treatment is determined by the way that he or she is responding to illness.