“Medical treatments cannot be ‘one-size-fits-all’. Each pet is distinct and his or her health condition is the result of a unique set of circumstances. To be most effective, our medical approach is based on recognition that the body has an innate ability to heal itself given the proper support.
“Our goal is to approach the body as a whole. Holistic means to recognize the interdependence of the whole system – all parts of your pet’s body, along with environmental factors. To ‘do Holistic Medicine’ is to treat not just the symptoms but to get to the core of the problem, so not only is the symptom relieved, but the body is helped to heal itself.
“It is important to understand that a holistic approach is successful when the pet owner directly gets involved in incorporating the alternate methods on a regular basis. A holistic approach to pet care means the pet owner is making a lifestyle choice.”
—Dr. Barrett

Learn More About Integrative Veterinary Medicine

Traditional or conventional Veterinary Medicine is an integral part of Kodiak Veterinary Hospital.

Traditional or conventional Veterinary Medicine is an integral part of Kodiak Veterinary Hospital.

In Western or Traditional Medicine “health” is defined as a state without disease. Disease is determined by doing diagnostic tests, the results of which determine the treatments for the patient. All patients with a given set of diagnostic results are given the same or similar treatments.  This approach treats the disease, not the individual who has the disease in a “one size fits all” approach.

Alternative medicine is an effective supplement to traditional medicine.

Alternative medicine is an effective supplement to traditional medicine.

There are times, however, when diagnostics tests results are normal but the patient is still not “acting normal” or “feeling well.”  How does a doctor test for “not feeling well” and how does she treat for it?

Laser therapy for cats and dogs is available at Kodiak Veterinary Hospital.

Laser therapy for cats and dogs is available at Kodiak Veterinary Hospital.

In Eastern or Alternative Medicine, “health” is defined as a state where there is balance within the body and mind.  Each of the body organ systems must be in balance within itself as well as in its relationship to the other organ systems.  Disease is seen as a physical expression of an imbalance within the body.  If there is balance, there is no disease and the patient feels well.

How Does Integrative Veterinary Medicine Benefit Your Pet?

Veterinary dental surgery.

Veterinary dental surgery.

When we use Integrative Medicine, we are not limited in how we reach the goal of “good health” for your pet.  We remain open to using the best of all worlds to understand the problem or detect and diagnose, and then to provide treatment.

Veterinary acupuncture for pain management.

Veterinary acupuncture for pain management.

This approach emphasizes the whole of your pet and the interdependence of all parts of your pet’s body, mental state, and surroundings.  For instance, your pet’s living environment, food & nutrition, as well as behavior can each lend as many clues as physical examination and diagnostic tests when solving the mystery of illness in your pet.

Proper nutrition is the key to a healthy animal.

Proper nutrition is the key to a healthy animal.

This holistic approach takes into account all aspects of the pet’s needs in assessing overall well-being.  The doctor looks at the symptoms along with other diagnostic methods to identify disease and patterns of disharmony.

Treatment can start with strong and potent traditional protocols such as surgery, medications for acute infections, and chemotherapy, for example, to help relieve symptoms quickly.   In addition, treatments can then be supplemented with alternative methods in an effort to individualize the treatment for the patient.  These treatment protocols provide many opportunities for the body to heal itself through diet, exercise, and mental development that strengthen, heal and improve vitality.

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