As a holistic veterinarian, I feel that it’s my obligation to approach everything holistically to get to the root of the problem at hand.
A term that is becoming increasingly popular (which I’m so happy to see taking place) is called, “One Health”.
One Health is essentially -- a cooperative effort from both human and veterinary medicine to optimize the health for people, animals, and the environment.
We're all here together on this planet, and we need to start being more cognizant of that.
One Health is all about taking steps to avoid actions that might have unintended negative effects on our local, national, or global community as a whole.
Before I heard about this movement, I’d been gradually implementing the same concepts to every aspect of my practice for years.
It just felt right, but I didn’t really know what to call it.
As an example, I no longer prescribe topical flea and tick medications at my clinic (Frontline, Advantix, etc.).
We instead use Bravecto, which is a chewable pill that's given once every 3 months and it does wonders for killing fleas and ticks.
(Less of a mess and it lasts 3x longer than topical treatments.)
When one of my pharmaceutical reps for topicals asked why I’d stopped carrying his products -- I told him that I could no longer in good conscience apply toxic chemicals to my clients’ pets.
Not only am I protecting their pets by making this decision, but I’m also protecting the owners and their children from those toxic chemicals as well.
He assured me that, “The government says they’re safe.”
I asked him if that was the same government that said, “Agent Orange is safe.”
To which he replied, “Point made.”
Another example of something I’m taking steps to do (to further follow the One Health principles) is approaching lawn care in a way that’s completely organic.
Golf courses are one of the most dangerous places to be around, due to the high amount of chemicals used to treat them.
Those same conventional chemicals are used on residential lawns too, just not in the same quantity.
Every time I've had my lawn treated with conventional chemicals, I can smell a strong chemical smell for a week or longer after the application.
However, you'll find that just about everyone who applies these chemicals will tell you that it's “safe” for pets to go out on the lawn about an hour after the treatment (once the chemicals have dried).
One reason I’m very leery of these chemicals, is that I once had a client whose dog was exposed to lawn chemicals just after they were applied (i.e., the grass was still wet with the chemicals).
There were no signs posted and the person spraying the lawn noticed the dog crawling in the freshly applied chemicals, yet didn’t advise the owner to immediately wash his dog in soap and water.
This poor dog had such a severe reaction to these chemicals, that his entire ventral abdomen swelled and rotted, which sadly led to his euthanasia.
I don’t care if those chemicals are considered safe after they’ve dried or not, I don’t want them anywhere near me or my pets.
One way that you’ll be able to tell if your own soil is healthy and alive, is to dig up a couple of shovelfuls and look for live earthworms.
If you can’t see any, the soil is considered “dead”.
If the soil is vibrant and alive, each shovelful of soil should yield several live earthworms.
Another major factor to consider regarding the topic of environmental health -- is that of honey bee vitality.
All the chemicals that are sprayed so commonly on residential and commercial landscapes are extremely harmful to the bee population.
If honey bees die, food crops won't be pollinated, and farmers won’t be able to produce food.
In the summer of 2017, the president of the Central Oklahoma Honey Bee Association came and spoke at a state veterinary convention I was attending.
He's very passionate about bees and rents out his hives to pollinate various crops around the state.
And guess what?
He won’t allow his bees to be rented out to any fields that have been sprayed with conventional insecticides.
Things that make you go, hmmm…
Now that I’ve brought up several significant problems, it's time to introduce some solutions.
There's a company called Eden Blue Gold Solutions that has an amazing line of natural mineral and herb products.
They are absolutely revolutionizing lawn care and the care of food crops.
Their products are used in both commercial lawn care and on many farms that grow alfalfa, corn, soybeans, and various other vegetables.
I myself plan on switching to this holistic form of lawn care this year, as now that I’m more informed, I realize it’s just the responsible thing to do.
I grew up on a farm and even though these products weren’t available back then, my goal was always to raise a crop and then leave the ground in better shape than when I started.
The Eden Blue Gold product line will allow me to do just that with both the lawn at my veterinary practice, and at my home.
If you’re in the Oklahoma City area and would like to come by my clinic, I carry several Eden Blue Gold products and would be happy to talk with you about the vast array of benefits they offer.
Oh, and one last thing!
I’d like to close this post by giving you a free gift :)
As we approach the start of lawn care season, we also begin the difficult journey of allergy season for ourselves and our pets.
Below, you can download a copy of my eBook, “Natural Allergy Care for Dogs and Cats”.
It's a very comprehensive guide that contains some of my best holistic allergy advice.
I hope you find it helpful and please feel free to share this post with a friend, so they can sign up to receive a copy as well.
Thanks so much for reading!
Until next time,
Dr. Terry R. Wood