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Healing Kennel Cough, Degenerative Disk Disease, Heart Murmur, Bladder Infection

This page includes cases of kennel cough, Heart Murmur, Bladder Infection, Evan's Syndrome, Degenerative Disk Disease and other veterinary conditions

Kitty with Heart Murmur and a Bladder Infection

Kitty with Heart Murmur and a Bladder InfectionBear is a special needs kitty who was dumped in the parking lot at work, and I'm guessing it was because he is a special needs kitty - he does rack up the vet bills. In any case, he's a four year old neutered cat, all white with gold eyes. He has a skin condition that is some kind of allergy and when it flares up, he literally chews at himself until there are areas without fur and the allergic point has ulcerated. This all happens in a matter of days.

We took him to the vet the first time and they gave him a steroid shot which almost immediately caused the ulcerations to heal. But in about 3 months, he was back for another shot. The vet was not concerned - he said there are many cats with this and the shot is fine in cats. This continued for 2 years and Bear then developed both a heart murmur and a very bad bladder infection. He spent a week in "kitty hospital" and finally came home to repeat the same thing within a few months. We had gone through the "special foods" (which I hated as they all contain meat by-products and all our animals have been on the good stuff), grainless diets, etc. Finally, I discovered Shirley's Wellness Cafe and he has been on Transfer Factor since May of 2010. The vet was impressed mainly because his heart murmur has gone away and although he still has outbreaks, they are far less intense and are of diminishing frequency. I'm convinced that with constant use, the outbreaks will disappear.
Jan Haerer

Poodle diagnosed with Evan's Syndrome

Name: Carol Bernie
Email: cbernie@clearmail.com.au
Location: Mt Compass, SA, Australia

I am writing to tell you that your site has been a Godsend to me and my dog, Toffee (female 8 yo poodle cross), in these past few weeks since she was diagnosed with Evan's Syndrome. However, I have my doubts as to whether this is truly her condition as having read all the symptoms, it does not seem to fit.

It started with a mouth bleed, and I assumed she'd cut her mouth on something while we were out walking (I thought maybe her jaw got caught in some wire while she was after some rabbits). But after 4 days of bleeding, I took her to the vet and he spent a considerable time telling me all the possible things that could be causing the bleeding - from poisoning (ruled out) to cancer or leukemia. I came out of the vet's clinic in disbelief that I had a dog who was terminally ill, and possibly dying when I thought she'd just cut her mouth. I decided to leave her for another week before blood tests as I was worried that if she had a bleeding disorder (he mentioned something about platelets, but I was in a daze), she might bleed out from having blood taken (a small chance this might happen according to the vet) - but I didn't want to risk it and needed time to process all the information, so he and his nurse probably thought I was a neurotic mother. I took her home and a week later went back for blood tests.

I also wanted to use some alternative treatments prior to having her blood taken and was hopeful that the bleeding would stop, as the vet didn't want to give me anything as it would affect the blood test results (which ended up costing $607 and he wouldn't even give me a copy!!) Her treatment could not go ahead until the results of the blood tests came back.

Your site was the only thing that gave me a glimmer of hope that I might be able to treat Toff without poisoning her with the medications that the vet wanted me to give her. I figured that if she had an immune problem or cancer/leukemia, then I would start her on an aloe vera and honey mix, together with the cottage cheese and flaxseed oil, Bioptron light therapy, accupressure, biochemics (tissue salts), and EFT. I also consulted an holistic vet and he sent a homeopathic liquid for her. She was on very soft food so as not to further aggravate her bleeding mouth.

Contact Shirley

After a week of my treatments, her bleeding stopped on the Sunday (Day 11) so I felt a bit better about her having blood taken the following day. Now, I'm not sure if the bleeding would have stopped on its own accord, or whether what I was doing had started to work. However, I am quite certain that what I had been doing was definitely helping her. At least I know that I haven't been poisoning her with drugs. I had asked the vet at our first appointment, "what will happen if I decide on no treatment, take her home and do nothing, and give her no medications?" He said that she would more than likely continue to have episodes of bleeding, possibly internally, and that the condition would worsen. But if she goes on a course of cortisone, she can have regular blood tests and her platelets should improve.

The vet rang me with the results of her blood tests the same day, and wanted me to bring her in first thing the next morning to start her on cortico-steroids to suppress her immune system. He was intending to give her an injection first and when I questioned what it would be for, he informed me that it was the same as the tablets he was giving her, but would be a bit stronger and would "kick start" her treatment. I decided there and then that I did not want her injected with anything and I said that I wasn't sure that I even wanted her to take the medication as I wanted to try "alternative therapies" first. Besides the cortisone tablets, he also gave me Zantac syrup for her, as the meds could aggravate the lining of her stomach. When he mentioned all the possible/probable side effects such as enlarged spleen, liver, kidneys, increased thirst and hunger, incontinence etc. my mind was made up that I was not going to put her (or me) through any of that.

I am surprised by all the testimonials on your site, that it seems that not many people are brave enough to use alternative/natural treatments FIRST over traditional veterinary treatment. I would be interested to know if anyone else has treated their animals with ONLY natural therapies. It seems that the majority of people take their vet's advice and ADMINISTER drugs FIRST, and then when they find it's not working or causes such bad side effects, THAT is when they turn to alternative/natural treatments, and I believe that drug damage has already put their pet at a disadvantage, so it makes it much harder for natural therapies to work as efficient, and often the damage from the drugs is permanent and irreversible.

I am still researching daily and have inspired several of my friends to start looking at alternative therapies for their pets (and themselves), as they have seen Toffee's progress and are amazed that I have achieved this without the use of the vet's drugs (which I returned to him a week later and surprisingly received a refund!) However, I was disappointed that he would not give me a copy of the blood tests - especially as they had cost $607! I did tell him that I was consulting an holistic vet, and the holistic vet did get in contact with him about Toffee's case - but I wasn't informed about what transpired.

I will continue with my regime, and have ordered some natural immune enhancing substances for Toffee, which I hope will support her immune system, I would be grateful for any additional suggestions you may have to further support her immune system. Toffee is looking alert and healthy and shows no signs of not being her "normal self".

Thank you again for your WONDERFUL SITE. You are a very special person to be making this information freely available to people who are often feeling very vulnerable and upset and who don't know who to turn to in such distressing circumstances. It was the only thing that gave me some HOPE.

I am happy for my testimonial to be posted on your site and will add updates if required.

Carol Bernie, Mt Compass, South Australia. AUSTRALIA cbernie@clearmail.com.au

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Sick and Dying Rescued Dog Healed with Home Remedies

Sage seemed to have pneumonia. He was coughing up blood and mucus was filling up his nose and eyes. He couldn't eat. He lost a lot of weight. He was skin and bones. Learn how Susan saved her beloved dog at home with natural remedies.

Shih Tzu with 3rd Degree Burn Miraculous Recovery

Tawana Jurek from Texas sent me this amazing story of her recued dog, Pepper. He had been set on fire, had become paralized and was unable to eat or drink. The vet wanted to euthanize him but Tawana would hear none of it. With knowledge of holistic healing, with determination, patience and lots of love, Tawana brought Pepper to a full recovery of optimum health.

Pepper is a 4-year-old Shih Tzu that was rescued on June 22nd, 2001 from the City of Dallas Animal Shelter. He was matted with clumps of hairballs and covered with ticks and fleas. He was filthy- dirty and worse of all he had dead skin with oozing pus all down his back. The dead skin was hard and black apparent third degree burns. From the looks of the dead skin and location it appeared the dog had been intentionally set on fire.

We got Pepper cleaned up and started him on medications for the burns and infection. He started to feel better, but on July 4th Peppers health turned for the worse. He collapsed and was taken to the Vet. We learned Pepper had granulomatous meningoencephalitiis, a fatal disease. He was given Prednisone, a steroid but the dog was getting worse. When I picked Pepper up from the Vet. Pepper could not stand, walk, bark, control his bodily movements, and was suffering from shaking non-stop. I had just listen to a CD about Ron Diamond who had undergone a water fast and then went on raw food.

He had cancer and was able to cure his self by fasting and a vegan raw diet. Since Pepper was not eating or drinking my husband and I decided to try clean the dogs system by giving him water for 11 days. We gave him the water through a syringe daily; he began to get more energy. He gradually got to where he could drink on his on. After 11 days he began to have an appetite. I put him on a 100% raw food diet, all organic. We gave him a lot of vegetables, raw hamburger meat, and a vegetarian supplement called NuVet.

Pepper was also treated with homeopathic medicine. On July 16th Pepper began to drag his self with his front legs. the back legs were completely immobile. My vet. even discussed with me the possibility of wheels for Pepper to help him move around. Because when Pepper dragged himself he would rub sores between his legs and also he could not stand up to use the bathroom. This only made the sores worse.

I did not give up. I was in Wholefoods market getting Peppers food and decided I would get a quick seat massage. I asked Scott Harness the massage therapist if he knew anyone that gave dog massages. Tuned out Scott was certified and had been studying dog massage and accupressure for years. He even had a business card with a picture of his dog on it, and a name for the business, "chi dog." I started to take Pepper for massage therapy. He began walking on all 4 legs within a month. He now is running and is barking and full of life.

The treatments we chose for Pepper I believe worked. Fasting, Organic Raw Food, Homeopathy, and Massage, Accupressure, natural supplements, all worked to help Pepper recover from a fatal diagnoses. I believe Pepper is cured. For now Pepper is doing great. Pepper is now officially a new member of our canine family. He officially got a Harley Davison collar with a bone ID tag. His life is now made a turn for the best. His hair has grown back from the burns. He is truly a miracle dog.

NOTE: In conjunction with flaxoil, holistic veterinarians are also using natural immune enhancing substances to support the immune system of animals with leukemia, cancer, diabetes, allergies and other conditions with excellent results.

Pepper's amazing story If you want to send Tawana an email, please send only a very short paragraph (she does not read long emails) You may receive a reply from her in 2 to 4 weeks.

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Poodle with Degenerative Disk Disease

Joint Stiffness and Pain in a Senior DogMy poodle, Sydney, was experiencing excruciating and continuous joint neck and back pain which the Veterinarian diagnosed as Degenerative Disk Disease. Consequently, the Vet prescribed an anti-inflammatory (steroids) and pain medication. Knowing that steroids have very bad side effects and were nota cure, I searched for an alternative to "modern" medicine.

Subject: Animal tumors
Date: Thu, 19 Feb 1998 23:23:25 -0500
From: "Phillip Jelinek" landmine@klondyke.net

I love your web site and I always find something to read about every time I visit. I was also following Woodro's site , very sorry he did not make it. I have found that for some reason Essiac tea does not work as well on animals as it does on humans for tumors, check the results for yourself as woodro is one example. I have tried it on several animals without any results. It seems to work wonders on people though.

What I found that works for animals with tumors and cancer is Blessed thistle herb extract (Cnicus benedictus) works very fast on tumors. There have been many studies done on blessed thistle and they found it rids animals of tumors. They have just over the past year started studies of noni on animals and found it to rid most animals of cancer. I just thought you might be interested. I wish they had tried blessed thistle on woodro as it got rid of tumors in two of my dogs. keep up the good work on your site. I have learned alot here and hope to continue learning." - Anne Saylor

Fighting fibroid breast tumors and paralysis in a cat

"I am pleased to say we are successfully fighting fibroid breast tumors and paralysis of the hindquarters brought on by colon cancer, and while I did have to use a few homeopathic medicines at first to reverse the kidney damage, the bulk of the credit goes to the juices."

"One month ago, this cat's hindquarters became paralyzed, and she was forced to ambulate by dragging herself by her forelegs only; bowel movements became virtually nonexistent. After one week of steady green juicing, elimination functions have resumed and her rear legs are moving again!"

Feline Health and Nutrition
Date: Sun, 14 Jan 2001
From: Eileen Poole

We rescue only FeLV+/FIV+, disabled and chronically ill cats and kittens. I believe nutrition is of primary importance to these cats and feed them real food (as opposed to commercial cat food) as much as possible, including fresh fish I catch in the summer. I've been online since late Dec. '99 and found your site while looking for natural diets for the cats. I'd feed them 100% natural foods if I could, but I can't afford to and would have to mix it by the bucket every day. Too bad I'm not rich. (Too bad we're ALL not rich!) When they eat commercial cat food, they get diarrhea and throw up, and they're hungry all the time. Natural foods; no diarrhea, no vomiting, it sticks to their ribs and they look and act healthier. If a cat is ill, I use as much natural foods as I can. It regains its strength and health much faster. Dogs and cats survived for thousands of years without commercial pet foods. I'm certain commercial pet foods are responsible for illness and premature death in pets.

Contact Shirley I rescued Tyrone, a10 days old abandoned kitten in June '01. He deteriorated, lost weight, got terribly skinny and reached the point where he was so weak, he hardly ate anything at all. At 9 months, he weighed about 2 pounds (should have been 5 pounds.) I started feeding him fresh, raw red meat (sirloin and round) several times a day. Within a couple of days, he started feeling more energetic. He ate more at once. He's been gobbling down four plates of it a day, a good amount at a sitting, plus a can of kitten food. Tonight, he came up on the couch and we noticed that he was finally starting to get meat on his bones where there had just been ribs sticking out before. I know he has a ways to go, he's too small and I feel there's something congenital wrong with him, but since he's been getting the raw meat, he's gotten much better. He has also been helping himself to dinner off my plate, potatoes, veggies and all.

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Severe diaphramatic hernia
From Paul email: vividiboo @ hotmail.com
Location: greater Orlando

Crosley, an eight year old grey tabby, was very depressed over the death of his companion feline friend Z. She had a severe diaphramatic hernia and no detectable diaphram and still lived 7 years! Crosley lost his appetite and stopped drinking. We took him to the vet and found he had a severe infection with a white cell count over 50,000. After leaving him for 3 days on IV fluids and antibiotics he had a white cell count over 72,000! The vet said it could be cancer but the x rays looked ok. Plus he had fluid in his chest around his lungs. She sent him home pretty much to die.

After doing some web research we came across your site. We decided there was nothing to lose and tried a mixture of Essiac tea and wheat grass juice force fed with a dropper. He seemed sicker the next day but we kept on giving it to him. On the third day he started to eat a little and slept at the end of our bed instead of hiding in the closet. By the fifth day he was more alert and hungry and was drinking on his own. Two weeks later he is acting like he did at age 2! He is friendly, active playful, energetic, doesn't have dandruff and his coat is soft and glossy! We call this his miracle juice. I never would have expected such dramatic results when two weeks ago I thought we were going to bury another pet! Hope this might help someone else.

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We Saved Our Dying Cat

Jan. 8 to Aug 2003 - The testimony about Sambo our cat - (born July 1985) -

We can hardly believe the recovery Sambo is making. As of last July he had lost 10 pounds (he had been 16 #) could hardly get up and down the stairs, slept a lot and dumped around. Walked like he was 100 yrs. old and we were sure we were going to lose him. He wasn't eating very much either. He slowly was getting worse and worse. He was so skinny and his fur got matted and terrible and then he started pulling his fur out - completely on both sides of his body. It was an area 2" long and full length of his body and on both sides. We never took him to the vet because we thought he was just getting old and we would just have to accept the fact that we won't have him very much longer.

We had just heard about natural immune enhancing substances a natural product to help support and boost the immune system. We thought if it helps improve human's immune system, maybe it will help our kitty. We started giving him 1-capsule of natural immune enhancing substances on Jan. 8, 2003. Right away we could tell that Sambo's immune system was functioning better and so on Jan. 15, 2003 we increased the dose to 2 capsules a day. His speedy recovery was hard to believe.

Contact Shirley He had regained 1/2 lb. by Jan. 18th and his fur was growing back on both sides and the rest of his fur was looking much better too. It had become very matted and ugly. Energy? He is bouncing up and down the stairs, up and down from the bathroom sink ( he loves to drink the running water but hadn't been able to make the jump for months) and hardly lays down for naps. Previously, he had been sleeping a lot. Once again he is following Neil everywhere as he had done for so many years, he was like our 'young' Sambo again and we knew he was going to be fine!! It is now Oct 2003 and he is still doing very, very good. Has a good appetite, has energy, doesn't sleep very much in the daytime as we would expect an old cat to do and has a lovely new fur coat.

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BARF diet and natural remedies

I have a dog that my vet had on numerous antibiotics for months with no "complete" accomplishments. The dog was tested for many things and all came back as negative. Next my vet told me they needed to refer me to another vet for more testing, they had no clue to her problem. This is when I discovered your site!!! I am feeding her BARF now and treating my dog with herbs and vitamins I am taking pictures of her progress as she heals. This is on my bulldog, on her rear area, hind right leg, upper portion about 6 months ago a cyst looking thing appeared on her. To the vet we went. You have heard the story~ It got better never well and then flares on her, vicious cycle.

Now, I have stopped ALL chemical use on her. A homeopathy doctor advised me to give her one dose of hepar sulphruis 200c, which I am expecting to receive any day I had to special order this. I was told to wait 30 days and check for improvement. If still a problem to give one dose of Silicea 200c and wait. I'm telling ya if pictures of seeing her doesn't make a believer of one to stop these chemicals, then shame on 'em! She will turn 3yrs old this May, she's a sweetheart and it breaks my heart when she gives me the moon shot (so to speak) and I see her bo-bo. I just can't really give Thanks enough to you for every thing you offer on your website, you're an Angel !

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Ebonique and nutrition

We got Ebonique about a year ago. She's about 4 years old, I think. We had to keep her in the upstairs bathroom because she was so afraid of the other cats. About 2 weeks ago, I noticed that her food wasn't touched. She was drooling all over everything. She also had very small, hard bowel movements. Brought her downstairs and put her in a cage in the livingroom and observed her. She drooled Natural Pet Vitaminsconstantly and made no attempt to eat or drink. Examining her, I found some very bad teeth and raw, bleeding ulcers in her mouth on the gum line. I started her on Amoxi drops and raw chicken. Not much response at first, but in a couple of days, she was eating the chicken and the drooling lessened.

I've been feeding her only raw chicken and beef and now, she's resting very well, the drooling has stopped and her bowel is much more normal. Soon, she will be healthy enough for dentistry. As we're able to afford it, I'm feeding the positive cats more raw meats and less canned cat food. They're hungry less often and appear to be in better shape than they were when they ate canned cat food. Sourpuss, my old lady (22 or 23) eats raw meat several times a day. She has a habit of falling asleep with her face in the dish of food. (Have to get a photo of that - it's hysterical!) Eventually, I hope to be able to feed only natural food. I am convinced that there are things in commercial cat foods that are affecting their health. They do so much better on a natural diet. - Eileen

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Lipo Sarcoma

On May 15, 2001 Michael Sweitzer wrote: "My dog has just recently been diagnosed with a lipo sarcoma (malignant cancerous tumor) of the front left foot. It has grown considerably and of course I dare not go to an oncologist for radiation or chemo treatments, and I refuse to have his leg removed. " Two weeks later, Michael wrote me his wonderful testimonial of amazing cure:

From: Michael Sweitzer: TheForeruners@aol.com

"Just thought to update you on my dog Chance, almost 10 year old Australian Kelpie, who was diagnosed with a Lipo Sarcoma. This is quite different than a Lymphoma.A Lipo Sarcoma is rare particularly in dogs and or cats. It is more common in people. Anyway, the moral of the story is that Chance is doing fantastic. His change in diet, the supplements, flaxseed oil and all the support from people like yourself and your site has helped out considerably.

The vets said that his chances of survival were slim. From just a little over 3 weeks ago when he was first diagnosed, the swelling on his front left leg where the Sarcoma was pronounced has gone down considerably. He is walking on it with no problem, and is back to his nutty crazy personality.

Although the diet change was an initial shock on his system, it is well worth it. Maybe I should have changed his diet to raw food more gradually but I believe that a shcok to the body is sometimes beneficial. Chance didnt want to eat for about 2 and a half days because of the changes and the supplements. But I wasn't concerned about him not eating because I knew that fasting is beneficial to a sick animal. Fasting allows the system to focus its energy toward healing the cancer. Now he eats like a champ again.

Contact ShirleyHere's his diet change and supplements:
Raw meats (Beef, chicken, fish (whole)
Puree vegetables (Mostly any kind)
Flaxseed oil (in water and mixed in his puree vegetables and raw meats
As far as treats he gets beef jerky strips only (The real beef strips) and
not alot. Also, for a dog with Cancer I found that it is best to not over feed

Herbs and herbal extracts:
Blessed Thistle : Some dog's may have a tough time metabolizing Blessed thistle, so keep it limited. It does have great tumor healing abilities.
Antioxidant and multiviatmin for dogs
Astragulus (promotes a healthy body, great immune booster) (Liquid only)
Burdock (promotes healthy blood levels) Liquid only
Hawthorne Berrie (Promotes Cardiovascular health) Liquid only.
*Slowly introduce the Hawthorne. So Chance is doing fantastic, and is putting weight back on to."

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Holistic health for a sick kitty
From krissy in Portland, OR
October 10, 2001
email: kddaisygrl@yahoo.com

Hi Shirley,
I just wanted to thank you for your site and send you my story so you can post it if you like. My cat, Madison, was sick. At first it started with one eye and one nostril kind of running and him sneezing. Then I began to see something inside his one nostril. Within a week it grew so that it was even with his nostril. Obviously he couldn't breathe well and he sneezed a lot.

I took him to the vet and they snipped a bit of it off and did a biopsy. That was on Aug 25th. On Sept. 7th they called to tell me that it was most likely cancer. It wasn't for absolute sure, but it seemed to be lymphoma and yes the thing in Maddie's nose was a tumor. Since the doc had clipped it from sight, in a little over a week it had grown back and was wider and bigger! I had resigned myself to the fact that my cat of almost 14 years had cancer, but the idea that I had to look at it and the fact that he wa

s having so much trouble breathing was not acceptable to me. I asked the doc how we could shrink the tumor and he said steroids would do it, but only for a month or so. Then it wouldn't work anymore. Besides chemo and all that there was little he said we could do. I told him to get me some steroids and I would pick them up in a couple of days.

Poor Maddie, I could tell he was feeling basically ok. He wasn't a lump or anything, he just wanted to be able to breathe and I wanted to help him with that.The next day I went on line to look for homeopathic recipes and found your site. I found the articles on how bad steroids were and decided not to go that route. From a few mentions on your site I got a game plan. I went to the natural food store and got the following : Flaxseed Oil , Cat Vitamins and Licorice Root drops.

I began giving him these with as much high quality food he wanted, which was a lot. After a week he seemed happier and the tumor didn't seem to be getting bigger and seemed like it was less swollen. Then I went and got him the Blessed Thistle. And Holy Cow! Soon with alternating all of these things, his tumor began receding. In a week and a half it was completely gone, he could breathe! His sneezing continued for a while and for one day he sneezed blood, but that went away. It was like his whole sickness was running in reverse. As of today, Oct 12, he is absolutely great. He is more energetic and loving then he has been i years and his coat is shiny and he hardly ever even sneezes anymore. His nose that use to have one side distorted and swollen with a tumor in it is absolutely perfect. it is a miracle and I thank the people who posted on your site about the Blessed Thistle (available here) and steroid problems and all of it and I thank you so much.

Contact ShirleyI still give him the herbs and vitamins and oil, but I don't do it as often. About every other meal I just give him food. I totally had guessed on how much to give him, but it seemed to work. If anyone is having this problem with their animal feel free to contact me. Obviously I am not a professional, but, anything I can do to help anyone else in this situation would be a pleasure. Thanks again! Madison thanks you, too!

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Flaxseed oil cured a cat's tumor
Bob and Maggie from Tucson, Arizona

The cat next door to my friends house had a large tumor on it's neck and it would carry it's head to one side. The cat's owners went on vacation and left instructions with the cat sitter that if the animal got worse to have it put down.

Having read of the Flaxseed Oil and Cottage Cheese treatment on Shirley's website, I suggested it's use to the cat sitter. She fed the flaxseed oil and cottage cheese to the cat for about two weeks. After that time the owners returned and were surprised the cat was still around.

Soon we noticed that the tumor had shrunk and the cat's head was better aligned. It has now been two years and the tumor has entirely disappeared and the cat's head is almost perfect. The cat is still doing cat things, like chasing birds and appears to be in perfect health.

Quadriplegic German Shepherd

Debbie Kazsimer from Pennsylvania USA
Sun, 21 Oct 2001

I have a quadriplegic German Shepherd named Sheba. Sheba lost the use of all four legs as result of the incurable spinal cord disease degenerative myelopathy. Sheba does not have much time left but I'm keeping her around as long as she is happy and has the desire to live. I do various alternative medical treatments on her to keep the quality of her life happy and comfortable. To see Sheba and read about what I do, go to http://ShebaTheQuadDog.homestead.com

Degenerative Myelopathy

Jo-Ann Satin (NY)
Thu, 11 Apr 2002
email: gsd0607@aol.com

In 1994, when he was 6 years old, I took Sasha to the NY Animal Medical Center after I noticed him favoring his back right leg. I had an appointment with an Orthopedist, expecting a diagnosis of HD or arthritis. After looking at Sasha, she called in a neurologist who pointed out Sasha's scraped nails on his rear feet. He then explained Degenerative Myelopathy to me. It is a degenerative, autoimmune disease that results in the victims' own immune system attacking and destroying the myelin lining of the nerves in the spinal column. It is VERY similar to the human diseases Multiple Sclerosis and Lou Gehrig's Disease(ALS) The vet was very pessimistic, as there was no known treatment, and the prognosis was bad. Most dogs's legs were totally paralyzed within months. But I knew that Sasha was a fighter, and so was I!.

During the vet visit I had mentioned that I was giving Sasha herbs and vitamins, including Yucca, since I thought his condition was Arthritis. The neurologist said that since I was interested in the 'natural' route, I should continue with the vitamin E, as it was an antioxident, and as such, it might be somewhat effective in this autoimmune disease. I did hours and hours of research on the internet. At that time, I only got 2 hits when I did a search on "Degenerative Myelopathy".

Today, there are many, many sites from which one could get help and support(Including the DM support group to which I belong). I found out that indeed, this was an automimmune disease, and free radicals were part of the problem. The next thing I did was call a friend of mine who is into natural nutrition He told me to take Sasha off meat immediately, as that is one of the greatest sources of free radicals. (I had been giving him LAMB dog food..thinking that was the best for his skin, and the least allergenic). As it turned out, lamb is one of the fattiest meats, and therefore creates the most free radicals. I changed Sasha's diet to pure vegetarian. I got vegetarian dog food, and started do a lot of cooking for him myself. At the time I had not heard of the raw food (BARF) diet, or I might have tried it.

Sasha was never on any medication from a Vet. I gave him every antioxident you can think of (Vit E, Vit C, Pycnogenol, Evening Primrose Oil, Hi Lignan Flax Seed Oil and Cottage Cheese , Lecithin, Garlic, Apple Cider Vinegar, Milk Thistle for liver activity, Saw Palmetto for Prostate Hawthorne for heart protection, Vitamins A,B-complex, D, Raw garlic, brewers yeast,Green tea capsules, Coenzyme-10, Ginger, Prozyme). The only meat he ever ate was chicken, but mostly he was a vegetarian. I usually cooked eggs, carrots, squash, many kinds of beans, broccoli, tomatoes, tofu, lots of garlic, brown rice and whatever other veggies I had around, into a stew for him. I would sometimes add chicken.

Contact ShirleyI took for chiropractic, and a swim therapy class. I noticed an incredible improvement on this regimen. The swim therapy was terrrific for his deteriorating stamina and muscle tone, as regular exercise took a lot out of him. This was particularly true in the hot weat! her! After a pretty short time, he was able to climb the stairs up to my room, and jump on the bed again. Sasha lived for years on this regimen. He was active and happy until end. Sadly, Sasha died five years after the DM diagnosis, from BLOAT...but he was still able walk and climb stairs(altho slowly by the end) when he crossed the bridge.

Many thanks to Jo-Ann Satin for the testimonial which she shared with us.

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Transition to raw food

Charlotte Oppe
Sent: Thursday, November 08, 2001

Dear Shirley, It’s been a long time since I last wrote to you and I thought I should write and tell you about Coll’s progress. The transition to raw food went smoothly enough and there was noticeable improvement in his general condition but there was clearly a more serious problem with his skin. By Easter, with the first of the warm weather his skin had deteriorated so badly that he had to go back onto antibiotics and steroids.

However this time I found a new vet who, though sadly not homeopathic had healthy SUSPICIONS about modern pet food (the first vet that I have met to have this attitude). That said, he knew nothing about raw feeding. He gave me an anti-fungal wash as he said fungal infections were often a complication of mange. The wash worked a treat and within a couple of months I was able to return with a beautifully healthy dog.

I have to say his reaction was that he was surprised that the dog had healed so well and that there were no scars. The ear infections have continued for some time but the problem is only with one ear now and over the summer with repeated use of ear cleansers and drops a lot of hard wax has come out. His condition is really good. I am amazed at how good his coat is, shiny and sweet smelling. No fleas or tics this year. He doesn’t moult as much as he used to and everyone comments on how healthy he looks. He is much more obedient and responsive to command (and they say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks!) His feeding program is as follows:
Big Labrador (approx 34 kilos or 74lbs)

  • 1 lbs of either raw beef (flank – usually used for beef burgers and is quite fatty) or organic chicken. I give him half a whole chicken and cut it up in pieces, bones and all. I usually give 4/5 days beef and 4 days chicken. It seems like a lot of meat but he is the correct weight now. I have noticed that his stools are harder when I fed him chicken bones than beef (same amount of veg.)
  • 1 lb of selected raw organic veg including cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, carrot and celery. I have had a few problems with him being sick and it seems that if I feed him MORE veg than this he is sick. I mix it with some of the meat in the food processor and some water.
  • Organic flax oil.

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