What do you think of ~~natural~~ homeopathic medicine? I get that it can be great complementary treatment, but you really can't argue with science. I once had a friend try to cure her dog's UTI with cranberry juice and essential oils - no antibiotics. It didn't work, and he ended up needing emergency treatment.
a system of “medical” practice that treats a disease especially by
the administration of minute doses of a remedy that would in larger
amounts produce in healthy persons symptoms similar to those of the
Homeopathic remedies are diluted so much that it is unlikely even a single molecule of the thing being ‘diluted’ remains in the administered water. It’s water and wishful thinking. It’s a placebo at best, it’s not medicine and it’s not science.
Using cranberry juice and essential oils might fall under naturopathy, or generic home remedies, but they’re only useful in very specific situations. It’s not always appropriate to use a ‘natural remedy’ intended for humans in an animal patient, because the pathophysiology might not be the same.
Essential Oil use in animals makes me very angry. There is no benefit to using them - any benefits listed are vague, non-specific, or outright wrong.
Do NOT apply essential oils to your pets. I don’t care if a certain ‘natural’ magazine published something saying you could put lavender oil on burns, do NOT do it. It does nothing to help, actively harms, and delays proper treatment.
Using essential oils on species with an excellent sense of smell borders on cruelty. That stuff is hard for us to get off, and I’ve seen half a dozen pets that have become so distressed that they’ve presented to the emergency clinic after hours because some well-meaning individual believed an article that basically claimed essential oils would work like magic and fix their pet’s problem.
Do not use essential oils on pets.
There are a handful of complementary treatments that do actually have some use, especially with chronic pain conditions. Without listing every single one that might have some benefit, the most common one I use is glucosamine and chondroitin. Used together these supplements can reduce symptoms of arthritic pain by up to 40% after 6 weeks. That’s not great on its own, but still useful as anything that reduced chronic pain is a good thing.
As a confession, I’ve done courses on ‘Healing with Herbs’. I wanted to believe in this stuff, but the science for most of it is weak, mostly human based, and so much of it is wishful thinking. I use it when and only when there is evidence to do so, and only use products that I have a high degree of trust will actually only contain what it says on the box.
A few clues that the ‘natural’ cure/treatment isn’t all it’s cracked up to be:
If a source is telling you that vets and animal health professionals either don’t know what they’re talking about, or are lying to you.
If it claims multiple, very different benefits that are difficult or impossible to quantify or measure
If there are untrackable, unverifiable testimonials saying how great the product is