You might have had a friend recommend acupuncture for your persistent headaches. Or, perhaps you’ve received a massage to help with things like back pain or even stress.
You’ve likely even tried some homeopathic remedies without even thinking about it, like drinking certain herbal teas to calm your nerves.
As humans, many of us likely don’t think twice about trying these methods to find some relief. However, what about your dog?
Do these healing methods that humans often utilize work the same for canines, too?
Energy healing for dogs comes in various forms, but overall it’s a holistic approach to treating various issues. As with humans, energy healing is all about rebalancing one’s lifeforce and considering your pup’s health as a whole: spiritual, physical, mental, and emotional.
There are several different forms of energy healing, including acupuncture, Reiki, healing touch, Qigong, and homeopathic medicine.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates roughly 3 billion people use holistic medicine as their primary healthcare. Therefore, it’s no surprise that people would start to turn to energy healing techniques for their furry friends.
But, with so many options, it can be a bit overwhelming trying to figure it all out.
As previously mentioned, there are several types of energy healing. Some of the most common are homeopathy, Qigong, Reiki, acupuncture, and healing touch.
You can familiarize yourself with each to determine which one might be the best fit for your pup.
Acupuncture is a form of traditional Chinese medicine that serves to restore one’s lifeforce or Qi (chi).
In the US (and Western medicine), people believe that acupuncture works by stimulating neural-hormonal pathways.
This stimulation releases hormones, which in turn reduces inflammation and pain. For this reason, many people turn to acupuncture as a way to get relief from chronic pain.
For dogs, it can have the same effect.
When the tiny needles get inserted into the skin, they stimulate those specific parts of the body, promoting a healing response.
Some people also believe the needles can help improve blood flow at the various insertion points.
Depending on why your pup receives acupuncture, they may need only a few sessions or more regular visits.
People seek acupuncture for their dogs to help with a variety of conditions, including arthritis, nerve pain, behavioral disorders, obesity, side effects from cancer, idiopathic epilepsy, and gastrointestinal issues.
Reiki is a Japanese-based form of energy healing that many use in the United States as a method of spiritual healing and stress relief.
However, Reiki has many skeptics, believing it to be a dog-and-pony show, while there are just as many firm believers in its abilities.
Reiki involves placing your hands on (or just above) your dog in specific hand positions, starting at the shoulders and working downward.
The spot you touch corresponds with different chakras, or energy points, in the body.
The concept is that you are transferring universal energy from yourself to the recipient, who needs to be willing to receive it.
Many dog owners use Reiki as a way to help alleviate their dog’s stress, promote overall well-being, and even help speed up the recovery process from certain conditions. However, it is only meant to supplement, not replace, any necessary medical treatment.
Qigong is a Chinese practice typically using a combination of body postures, movements, and breathing to improve health and spirituality. It was traditionally used as part of martial arts training and helped develop and balance the chi.
For dogs, Qigong practitioners have started to apply these techniques to help reduce a variety of conditions, including stress and age-related issues.
Many also express that the practice can help improve things like flexibility while decreasing the risk of specific health problems.
The idea is that the practitioner recognizes which parts of your pup might be out of balance or in distress. Then, using different movements and meditation helps rebalance and move the lifeforce through your dog’s body to help reduce health problems.
Typical homeopathic remedies usually stem from various minerals, plants, and animal products.
The idea is to use small, highly diluted doses of a chosen therapy to help stimulate your dog’s own immune process.
The goal is to help the body develop a natural healing process, strengthening your dog’s response to future disease instead of weakening its immune system.
While people use homeopathy for many reasons, some of the most common uses in dogs are arthritis, skin irritation, allergies, asthma, and gastrointestinal issues.
You need to be very careful with the amount and type of remedies you use for your pup. This is why it’s best to seek professional recommendations and guidance if using homeopathic medicine.
You’ve probably heard the term, the healing power of touch, expressing how physical contact can help one feel better, reduce stress, and relieve pain.
People have been getting massages for ages for these very reasons. The same concept applies to pets.
Massage is a non-invasive method of helping your dog feel better and can be a fantastic stress reliever for anxious pups. It’s also a great way to strengthen the bond between you and your dog.
You can also use massage in conjunction with veterinary care to help your dog recover faster from certain illnesses or injuries.
There are a variety of techniques, depending on what you’re trying to achieve, but you can learn some basic massage skills to use on your dog at home.
You can find different companies and individuals that offer healing services. It’s best to get recommendations from trusted friends or family or your veterinarian.
It’s also wise to interview a few possibilities before choosing one.
There are also holistic veterinarians that you can go to seek different energy healing treatments. Plus, some vets offer acupuncture as part of their practice.
However, as with any illness or health condition, consider all of your options.
For example, certain energy healing techniques might be excellent ways to offer your dog relief from pain or help with certain behavioral issues. Still, they aren’t meant to completely replace medical care and treatments for illnesses.
Should your dog have a disease or are experiencing some significant problems, it’s always wise to consult with your vet if there is an underlying medical condition present.
You might find a combination of traditional veterinary care and energy healing the best course of action for some situations.
Be open and honest with your vet about your thoughts and feelings, and remember, ultimately, you both want what is best for your dog.