Chicago offers so many amazing opportunities for pet parents to have fun together. The city and surrounding suburbs are so dog-friendly it’s no wonder we have an arsenal of renown veterinarians, more rescues and shelters than we can count (and we always need more help in that department) and education opportunities for pet parents.

I typically rave about my dog’s vet, Dr. Royal, because she is seriously amazing at her job and is so passionate about giving pets the right care. She recently launched Royal Animal Health University with Dr. Natasha Lilly and I attended the most recent course in Chicago, ‘What’s in Your Emergency Kit?’.

The Royal Animal Health University (RAHU) is dedicated to teaching and advocating a hands-on, holistic, innovative, and common-sense approach to all aspects of animal care.  Our effective, science-based, integrative veterinary summits and webinars are designed to help caregivers — from pet parents to industry professionals to veterinarians — as they improve their options for the health of animals, our environment and our planet.

I learned an incredible amount of information on how to care for my dogs when it comes to emergency situations. I have pages and pages of notes and need to update my toolkit of holistic care items, and I can’t wait to share more of what I have learned and will learn from attending even more courses. Though everything I learned is important, here are some key takeaways from the course:

  1. The gv26 governing vessel is a resuscitation point that can be used during CPR while you are on your way to the vet. This is a life-saving acupressure point that every pet parent should know about! Here is a great explanation and shows exactly where and how to do it.
  2. Laser therapy can help with really nasty UTI and bladder infections. Sometimes these infections are really hard to get rid of and antibiotics can cause havoc on an animal’s body over time but laser therapy can be used to really knock out those persistent infections.
  3. Homemade bone broth can help with renal failure, stomach issues, and weakness from illness or surgery. Use a knuckle bone to get some really good nutrients and enzymes from it. Here is a recipe.
  4. Topicals for skin, ear, and other inflammations can save you a trip to the ER. Obviously, you know your pet best and when they aren’t feeling or doing their best, but if you equip yourself with a toolkit of holistic remedies that can be used to create topicals you can treat your dog in the comfort of your home. For instance, for an inflamed ear, try a chamomile or green tea bag warm compress on the area and use a gentle mix of calendula and arnica around the ear with a cotton ball. Never stick anything in the ear.
  5. When you practice and follow holistic medicine, there are so many more options for treatment than when you are resorting to western medicine. Yes, sometimes prescribed antibiotics and anti-inflammatories are necessary, but there are an endless amount of tools available in holistic medicine and I merely touched on a few.


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