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Five Quick Tips: A Veterinarian's Advice for Optimal Pet Health

I asked integrative veterinarian Dr. Larry Siegler for a “short list” of the advice he regularly gives his clients. Here were his answers:

1. For optimal nutrition, feed pets raw or homemade food. Many people prefer to use dry food because of the convenience, or because they believe their animals need the “crunch”, but as it is highly processed, it is the least healthy food for your animal.

2. Don’t over-vaccinate. Veterinary medicine is finally recognizing that the over-use of vaccines creates long-term, negative immune system consequences.

3. Keep an eye on calories! Dr. Siegler says that well over 50% of the pets he treats are overweight. As with humans, excess weight creates a myriad of problems including additional stress on the joints, heart/lung difficulties and premature aging. Remember, there is NO benefit from having too many extra fat cells in the body, and over-feeding is not the proper way to show love to your critters!

4. Seek alternative ways initially; try not to turn to drugs (particularly antibiotics) except when necessary. As an integrative practitioner (trained in both traditional and alternative medicine) Dr. Siegler advocates for gentle yet effective treatment options.

5. Give your pets plenty of exercise—it decreases stress for everyone!


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