2016 is going to be the year when people really take back control of their physical and emotional health, and Alison’s wonderful site gives people some amazing tips on how to do this.
As animal owners, one special gift we can give to the animals is to help them help themselvestake control of their health. For all of us, whatever species, being allowed free choice on certain aspects of our lives is so important for happiness. If someone were to tell, and force you, to eat certain things every day of your life, however good for you they were you are unlikely to have the same mind-set as if you had chosen yourself. The same goes for our animals.
However experienced we are as animal owners, all animals have an innate ability to self-medicate. The bodies of all animals are programmed to maintain health and homeostasis (balance) – but sometimes the choices we make or circumstances push them out of balance. This is when we start to notice problems.
Applied Zoopharmacognosy (AZ) enables self-medicative behaviour in domesticated or captive animals by offering plant extracts that would contain the same or similar constituents to those found in an animal’s natural environment i.e. if they were living wild that they would be able to forage for and select for themselves. The word Zoopharmacognosy is derived from the Greek ‘zoo’ (animal), ‘pharmaco’ (remedy) and ‘gnosy’ (knowing), and Applied Zoopharmacognosy is the application of this knowledge for animals who do not have access to an environment rich in their natural resources – so the carer brings nature to the animal!
Over the next few weeks I am going to explain this process more, using various species and common health problems as examples. I am hoping that this will encourage you to try this with your animals and ultimately yourselves! This will really deepen your relationship and understanding with your animals, save you potential vet bills and most importantly give you the best chance of maintaining a healthy and happy animal! You will be amazed at what our animals can teach us!
So how do you allow animals to self-select and what do you offer them? How do you know if they want it or not? This is done by closely observing self-medicative behaviours exhibited by the animal. The extracts offered include a variety of essential oils, absolutes, plant extracts e.g. herbs and herbal powders, macerated oils, tubers, clays, algae, seaweeds and minerals. The animal may select a remedy for inhalation, ingestion, to be rubbed on their body (and hence absorbed through the skin / hair). The animal is always allowed to select its does and method of taking the remedy. For anyone attending my workshops we experiment with this process on ourselves, it is fascinating to teach people to listen to their body in this way!
Next week’s blog will explain how to offer herbs and herbal powders to your animals, the week after that will explain how to offer essential oils to your animals. If you have any particular health issues with your animals please let me know and I can try and incorporate that into the weekly blogs!
So in preparation for next week anyone with an animal I would like you to set the following products in and I will explain how to use them! All products should be organic where possible, and if using essential oils therapeutic grade:
Organic virgin coconut oil
Organic Barley or Wheat grass
Organic Linseed or Olive Oil
For more suggestions of what animals commonly select please also contact me and I can advise!