Your Tripawd Can Live a Hoppier Life with Dr. Marty’s Advice

Dr Marty Natural Animal Healing bookMany of you might be familiar with “Dr. Marty,” because he happens to be the veterinarian of choice for celebrities like Oprah and Martha Stewart. Dr. Marty also has his own Sirius Networks radio show on Martha Stewart’s network, Monday nights, from 8pm-9pm, EST. He has made regular appearances on many TV shows as well.

Long before many of us learned about the horrors of commercial pet foods, or embraced the concept of holistic medicine for animals, Dr. Marty was advocating for home cooked diets, speaking out against over-vaccination, and treating his clients with acupuncture and homeopathic medicine.

We were introduced to Dr. Marty after learning about Prana, a 15 year old German Shepherd who was a lifelong client of Dr. Marty’s. Prana lived a long, healthy life and with Dr. Marty’s guidance, managed to help her body cope and heal from several medical conditions that would wreak havoc on less healthy dogs. We asked Prana’s Mom what her secret was for living such a great life:

“I have been using alternative therapies on my Shepherds for the past 15 years. I give them a raw foods diet, mostly organic, avoid conventional vaccines, except for minimal use of rabies, never use heartworm meds and avoid conventional flea and tick treatments.”

When we heard about the amazingly healthy life that Prana enjoyed, we just had to learn more about her Mom’s Mentor, Dr. Marty.

Dr. Marty is a conventionally trained veterinarian who became a believer in alternative medicine long ago, when he sought out holistic medicine treatments for his own recurrent health problems which weren’t being helped by traditional western medicine. When these problems were finally resolved using a natural, non-toxic approach, he  committed himself to mastering the art and science of integrating holistic methods of treatment with conventional veterinary medicine in his own practice.

Dr. Marty is considered the world’s leading expert on holistic veterinary medicine. But he isn’t defined strictly by holistic medicine principles: he believes in the powerful curative effect of combining the best of both conventional and holistic medicine. As a result, he and his staff at Smith Ridge Veterinary Center follow the principles of “integrative medicine” where both types of therapies are combined to maintain health and guard against disease.

Since 1984, he and his staff have become well-known for their extraordinary success at treating cancer and other serious illnesses. Critically ill cats and dogs from around the world are brought to his clinic for treatment, usually after other vets have given up on them. The vast majority are restored to health and wellness once the principles of integrative medicine are faithfully applied.

The Nature of Animal Healing

Dr. Marty has a comprehensive book filled with practical advice about pet health and wellness, called “The Nature of Animal Healing.” This book takes readers through the essentials of holistic medicine, and shares basic tips for applying these principles to your pet’s life. This guide should be a part of every pawrents resource library.

Dr. Marty explains that holistic pet care is centered around the concept that the best way to cure an animal who is sick, is to help the animal cure itself. Neither us nor the veterinary pharmaceutical industry are not the true healers of our pets — they are. By treating the root of the problem instead of the symptoms, holistic medicine helps our pets regain and maintain their own health.

The book has great advice such as; why we shouldn’t feed our animals commercial pet foods, and what we should be feeding them instead. He explains why vaccines are doing more harm than good, and how you can keep your pet safe from overuse of them. You’ll learn what acupuncture and homeopathic medicine is and how it can restore your pet’s vitality. You’ll discover why sick pets need to experience a “healing crisis” and how a scare like that will actually help them recover. There is an entire chapter devoted to the methods Dr. Marty uses for treating cancer holistically, and also a comprehensive layman’s guide for treating a variety of common cat and dog ailments with common foods, natural herbs, homeopathic medicine, and lots more.

Originally published in 1999, The Nature of Animal Healing makes incredibly bold statements that fly in the face of what modern conventional veterinary medicine teaches. And while some of the holistic methods and principles he endorses might seem too far out for some (he believes in the “dubious effects” of vaccines), all of his arguments are supported with scientific data that he and other like-minded doctors have researched for decades.

We feel compelled to mention that we respectfully disagree with some of his ideas. For example, in his chapter about animal spirituality, he believes that there is no need for pawrents to be present during euthanasia. He explains that wild animals choose to die alone, and being present with our animals during their final moments is fulfilling our own human needs, not theirs. I think that in the time since this book came out, our thinking about this emotional subject has changed tremendously.

Overall, however, Dr. Marty’s book is life-changing. Read his book with an open mind, make a commitment to applying his advice to your own pet’s lives and we guarantee you won’t be disappointed. Results like the long happy life of Prana are proof that it works.

Dr. Marty’s clinic is located in South Salem, New York, about 1 hour north of New York City. His clinic is Smith Ridge Veterinary Center, and both in-person and phone consultations can be made by calling (914) 533-6066.

PBS Viewers’ Stories: Senior Shepherds Live Long by Eating Raw

Senior Shepherd Prana with VahanaRecently, New York resident Yvonne Gonski wrote to us after watching the PBS show we were featured in, called Why We Love Cats and Dogs. She was moved by Jerry’s story, and wanted to share her own experience with Prana, her amazing nearly fifteen year old German Shepherd girl.

Sadly, Prana recently passed away after a courageous battle with pneumonia. She will be missed dearly. Her Mom wrote this great post for us, before Prana went to the Bridge. We publish this story in tribute to this amazing girl. May her spirit fly free.

Here is Prana’s inspawrational tale . . .

If you’re wondering what the secret is to ensuring a long healthy life for your dog, Yvonne Gonski has two words: “raw foods.” And although many of you Tripawds are battling cancer and might be avoiding raw foods right now, we thought your pawrents still might find these general concepts about home made dog diets to be useful.

“I have been raising German Shepherd dogs for the past 28 years. My journey of learning to provide my dogs with alternate methods of care began 15 years ago, following the passing of my three male German Shepherds.Although two of them died from age related conditions, I started to question the commercially prepared food I was giving them and the conventional vaccines and medications they received over the years.

One of the books that got me started was The Complete Herbal Handbook for the Dog and Cat, by Juliette de Bairacli Levy A strong advocate of a raw foods diet and the use of herbs to treat most canine diseases, she bred Afghan Hounds for over fifty years.

Her lines are virtually disease free and many of her dogs typically lived into their twenties. Her book has become my bible for feeding and treating my dogs with herbs when they are ill.

What Does Prana and Vahana’s Raw Diet Look Like?

Continue reading PBS Viewers’ Stories: Senior Shepherds Live Long by Eating Raw

My Diet While Fighting Osteosarcoma

What a Pretty PuppyPlease note: this information is just based on my own experience, and is not meant to replace advice given to you by your vet or other canine health professional. To read about what other pawrents are feeding their tripawds, please visit our “Eating Healthy” Forums.

Before I got sick, I used to eat a half “BARF” diet (Bones and Raw Foods), and half premium Innova EVO kibble diet. I  was lean and healthy, and my system was used to good food already. That’s because when I was about four years old, my Mom found out what’s really in commercial dog food. After that, she never fed conventional dog food to me again – that stuff’s bad.

When we learned I had cancer, we wanted to make sure my diet was as healthy as possible. To point us in the right direction, my Mom did more BARF research and attended a BARF class. She also got a great book called Natural Nutrition for Dogs and Cats that helped her find the right combination of a human grade, meat and veggie diet for dogs with cancer.She and Dad decided to focus on a few select type of foods and supplements, which we describe below. There are many other choices out there, please do your research and learn what’s best for your dog’s unique health picture.

After I got sick, I still ate a half-BARF, half kibble diet, but some BARFers don’t advise giving dogs kibble and BARF foods simultaneously, because they say kibble slows down digestion of raw meats. My Mom tried to give me a 100 percent BARF diet for a while, but found that I was getting too skinny.

Save on Supplements at Only Natural Pet StoreShe started feeding me small amounts of Innova EVO kibble with supplements mixed in. As an entree, I got various types of raw meat. I never had a problem with digestion, and once I started eating this way, I maintained a perfect weight of 75 pounds.

Please keep in mind that we are not experts, and your dog’s own nutritional needs may be different. We recommend  talking to a holistic nutritional expert and/or learn all you can about BARF before attempting a diet change for your Tripawd.

My Dog Cancer Diet

My daily regimen changed over the two years I fought cancer, just like the cancer within me evolved. In my case, the osteosarcoma progressed exactly as textbooks describe it. My diet changed at three distinct times while I fought this disease.

Continue reading My Diet While Fighting Osteosarcoma