It was late summer, the kind of day when you leave the doors and windows open as much as possible, so that the scents of nature linger and merge with our senses. My little dog Mo suddenly became interested in something on the floor and hasted to investigate it.
Before I could even get there, she was already pawing at her face. As I took her little head into my hands, I saw a large stinger poking out of her chin. No sooner than I pulled it out, her eyes rolled, her head fell backwards, and she slumped on the floor, unconscious. I stared solemnly into a full blown anaphylactic reaction, knowing well that I may have only seconds before she reached the point of no return.
Whether it's a reaction to a vaccine, a medicine, some food item, or a bee sting, anaphylaxis is one of scariest events a pet owner may face. Sometimes, even living next door to a 24 hour veterinary clinic, may not be enough to save an animal's life.
Allergic reaction can show itself in different forms. Chronic and mild forms include lethargy, skin rashes, indigestion, and almost any other symptom you can think of. Anaphylaxis sits on the 'acute and deadly' end of the spectrum of allergic reactions. The quickest and deadliest form is precisely the one my little Mo displayed because it gives virtually no warning. Another form of anaphylaxis that gives you minutes rather than seconds starts with the changes in breathing and usually rapid swelling of the face.
In a second, I switched from being a panicked owner to being a practitioner, and ran for a little amber glass bottle titled 'shock' that held Mo's hope for survival. In just a little bit, I will tell you what that bottle contained. I lifted her lip and squeezed the dropper.
One drop, wait a few seconds. The longest seconds in all of time. Her eyelids fluttered. Second drop, third, fourth, and onward, all a few seconds apart. Within a couple of minutes she held her head up, still looking very dazed.
I began to space the drops to about a minute in between. Within about ten minutes, she could stand up. Within twenty minutes, she was running around as though nothing has happened. How much do you think my knowledge was worth to me in that moment? Let's get you ready now, all in hopes that you will never need to use it.
The little amber glass bottle held three homeopathic remedies, all applicable to the state of shock, both emotional and physical. For the sake of brevity, I will not go into the science of homeopathy here, you don't need it for the intended purpose, namely, for reaping the benefits.
Could the formula be more specific if the nature of the trauma was better known? Yes, of course, but the gist is that it is not known. All we are trying to achieve is to be prepared in case of an emergency, and if need be, the rest can be dealt with later.
Aconitum is a prime remedy for shock, fear, and all their effects. This is the one that you, the owner, should take as well, considering what you go through when your beloved pet is in danger.
The remedy Apis is made from the honey bee, therefore, in case of a bee sting, this is not just a symptomatic remedy, it is also causative. If I had to choose only one remedy to rely on in case of anaphylaxis, it would be this one. Severe reaction to a bee sting is almost identical to a severe reaction of any kind, and homeopathy is all about the law of similars.
Arnica is not just for bruises. Its essence is physical shock and trauma, and the mind that shuts down as a response. That is exactly what the organism experiences in case of anaphylaxis.
Preparation and Dosage
When purchasing homeopathic remedies, the first thing you have to choose is the potency. In health food stores, you will likely find the 30C potency, and if that is all you can get, it is fine. Better to use what you have than to use nothing at all. Having said that, the stronger and more applicable potency for this kind of trauma would be 200C. Finding it for purchase online should be no problem at all, and you can always contact the author.
Homeopathic remedies come in pellets, liquids, tablets, etc. It does not matter what form you purchase because you will take a little bit of each and put it all together in one dropper glass bottle. Add equal amounts of vodka and pure water to fill the rest of the bottle, making sure that you leave some room, so that the bottle can be shaken well. In other words, make it about ¾ full. Shake well, by striking the bottom of the bottle against the palm of your hand about 20-30 times. Stick a label on it, and put it in an easily accessible place.
Usually, less vodka is used when preparing liquid remedies, but for this one, we need it to keep fresh for years, and that is the only reason why we use more. If you ever notice cloudiness or specks inside the bottle, you should throw it away and make a new one.
A dose is a single drop. A few drops given at one time is still a single dose, so do not worry if you accidentally empty a dropper full into the dog's mouth. How do we increase the dose then? The dose is increased by increasing the frequency of repetition rather than the amount of substance.
Have you noticed that I mentioned giving the remedy every few seconds when the symptoms were the worst, and spacing it out more as my dog got better? The rule is that you must match the frequency of dosing to the intensity of trauma. While mild chronic states may require once daily dosing, a life-and-death situation requires once every few seconds dosing.
That is essentially all you need to know to save an animal's life in case of a severe allergic reaction. Preparation, as always, is the key to a relative peace of mind.
Aleksandra is a long term holistic practitioner, teacher, and author. She founded http://www.Health4Animals.com a comprehensive course on holistic animal treatment.