Saturday, May 23, 2009
Of Friendship and sharing - and alternative medicine
I have to thank you for helping me making so many friends through your blog! This means a lot to me since I’m not as outgoing as my sister. But, I can say now… that I have my own little “gang” here…sharing tricks and tips on how to train our humans to…perfection (in serving us, of course) ☺
There are two things I’d like to share with all the cats on your blog. The first one is an article I’ve just read in the last issue of Namaste Magazine (www.namastepublishing.co.uk) regarding the problems with “vaccines”. Its title is “We must be blind” and it was written by Catherine O’Driscoll based on her own experience and research. The second one is about a book entitled “Your Healthy Cat” by H. G. Wolff, D.V.M (subtitled “Homeopathic Medicines for Common Feline Ailments”). We heard our humans talking a lot about the book. We found out that Dr. Wolff is a homeopath/veterinarian from Germany and this is the very first translation of one of his books. ISBN 1-55643-113-9
I’m still curious how we, cats, will take “homeopathic medicine” (even if this alone is a whole chapter in the book). Also, the doctor is talking about weight gain and (Herbie….you won’t like this one) he says that “any cat that weights over 11 lb or 5 kg is overweight. Of course…..he suggests “different” approaches ☹
So, dear George, I wonder what is your take on these two topics? Did you ever take an homeopathic remedy? Or do you know of any cat using homeopathy? It would be nice to hear from other cats too.
I welcome the chance to discuss this. I am totally sceptical about alternative medicine and I'm definitely not in favour of the anti-vaccination movement. Unvaccinated dogs, cats and humans are at risk of serious illnesses. There is no evidence whatsoever that homeopathic nosodes work - and so they create a false sense of security.
Yes, if your cat or dog lives in a country area and doesn't meet other dogs, it can probably get away without being vaccinated and, yes, vets probably vaccinate more than is necessary. Indoor cats in the UK, for instance, only need very basic vaccinations just to ensure they can be put in a cattery. (I know of only one cattery locally that will take a non-vaccinated cat and it is filthy and ill managed and I wouldn't let Celia put me in it even for 24 hours.)
I have been vaccinated against cat 'flu and in my early years against feline leukaemia, because I am a free ranging cat. I get about a bit and Celia wants to protect me. There is no evidence that, if a cat is healthy, vaccinations are dangerous. There's a good discussion about what vaccinations are necessary, to be found on either www.fabcats.org or the American Association of Feline Practitioners guidelines on http://www.cfa.org/articles/health/vaccination-guidelines.html#recommendations. In the UK, where there was a big fuss against human vaccination (due to a scientific article which has now been proved to be false), measles and other serious childhood illnesses are now coming back. Children are now at risk of serious illness or death due to bad science.
So, you can see where I stand in this debate, Cayenne. I was a rescue kitten and during my time in Cats Protection, the adults cats in nearby cat chalets, who had been picked up as strays, told me about the miseries of unprotected street life. They were at risk of FIV (feline immunodeficiency virus), FLV (feline leukaemia virus), cat 'flu which kills kittens and leaves adults permanently impaired in health, feline enteritis anc chlamydia. Stray cats die of these illnesses if they don't starve first.
Nor do I believe in homeopathy. I don't know of a single properly designed trial that suggests that it works.n Not one. Homeopathic medicines, however, don't do harm because they are so "weak". That's something. And, I will admit that homeopathic vets have one great virtue - not their medicines but the way they treat their feline patients as a whole. They don't just jab in antibiotics. They look at a cat's whole lifestyle. I wish traditional vets would do that too.
While I am on about it, I don't believe in unqualified humans treating cats (or themselves) from a book. Don't let your human do it, Cayenne. If you are ill, you need a properly qualified vet. If she believes in homeopathy, pick a qualified vet who does homeopathy. Luckily I know she is a great cat owner so you needn't worry. There may be useful information in the book but it will be no substitute for proper vet care. When Celia was a pet agony aunt she was horrifed by the number of people who treated cats with remedies that were usually useless and sometimes highly dangerous (herbs for cats with impaired digestive systems, for instance).
So, Cayenne, protect your health. Make sure your human takes the good things from the book but gets proper veterinary treatment when it matters. We are worth it.
PS. I believe the illnesses that plague dogs are more likely the result of inbreeding within a small gene pool (the breed) than from vaccination. Luckily you and me, Cayenne, are proper healthy moggies.
Help for cats whose humans show behaviour problems.
This blog is devoted to the study of human behaviour. We cats, who live with this sometimes unpredictable and always feeble minded species, can benefit from seeing their behaviour in its proper scientific context. The study of feline dilemmas, training problems, and difficulties with humans, can only benefit all of us. All of us train our humans - to buy the right food, for instance, but many of us do not have knowledge of how to improve our training methods. The human species is obviously not as intelligent as the cat, but nevertheless can learn quite a lot - if properly managed. Topics of interest include the use of claw and order, purring as a human reward, rubbing your human up the right way, when to bite, spraying as a method of making our wishes known, ignoring the human, human harassment, human inattention and sheer human stupidity. I welcome your questions. Photos can be sent via my secretary's website, www.celiahaddon.com This blog has been chosen as one of the top 50 feline blogs by Online VetTechprogramms.org