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Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog [Paperback]

Wendy Volhard
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
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Book Description

May 1 2000 Howell Reference Books
A complete revision of a ground-breaking reference.

Designed to provide updated information found in the original book, as well as lots of new topics, and a new organization—this second edition is more user-friendly than ever!

Readers will get the latest on:

  • Healthful diets for dogs of every age and activity level
  • How to modify your dog's diet to best meet seasonal needs
  • Natural ways to keep your dog healthy throughout all stages of life
  • How to care for a dog in poor health
  • The vaccine controversy—the pros, the cons and how to sort them out * Homeopathic remedies
  • Alternative therapies, such as acupuncture, acupressure, aromatherapy, chiropractics and use of medicinal herbs

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Finding nutritional data for dogs can be a difficult business--and while much of the information in Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog is presented by anecdote, there's still plenty of worthwhile reading here. Aimed at dog owners that are already fairly committed to nonallopathic forms of health care for their pets, much of the book is based around author Wendy Volhard's Natural Diet. The Natural Diet is fairly labor intensive, as Volhard is the first to admit, but she provides page after page of testimonials that credit the diet with improved temperaments, better activity levels, and exemplary physical health. Each ingredient in this diet is discussed in depth, so owners not ready to take the step of providing a complete diet from scratch can still learn about potentially valuable supplements, as well as what ingredients to look for in a commercial diet.

Beyond the dietary information provided, there are several chapters that give solid explanations of different types of health care available, including homeopathy, kinesiology, and the five-element theory. For those who still prefer allopathic care for their dogs, the chapters that cover standard lab tests are extremely useful, finally giving a layman's guide for urinalysis, blood serum, liver function, and thyroid testing. A glossary defines various terms such as acidosis and hepatic, and each description is easily understandable, even by those with no medical background whatsoever. For puppy owners, the chapter discussing vaccinations is informative--Volhard questions the necessity of many we take for granted, and suggests several methods for lowering the required number for your pup.

Ultimately, the majority of this book is geared toward folks who are already committed to providing their pooches with alternative health care and homemade food. No matter how interesting the dietary concepts presented here, if you aren't already a true believer it's not likely that Volhard's anecdotes will provide you with enough statistical proof to completely overhaul your dog's way of life. --Jill Lightner

From the Back Cover

Holistic veterinary care remains one of the fastest-growing specialties in canine medicine. Like the original, the second edition of The Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog includes all of the in-depth information readers need to evaluate their dogs' dietary and medical regimens in light of holistic alternatives, and provides them with a new way to look at canine health in general. However, this new edition is updated and revamped with more information on all things holistic for the new millennium. In this updated version of a dog care classic, readers learn more about:
  • How to read commercial dog food labels and understand what they really mean
  • The Natural Diet and how to prepare it
  • Raising puppies and caring for older dogs
  • What supplements are all about
  • How to assess vaccinations and lab tests
  • Kinesiology
  • Homeopathy
  • The Five-Element Theory of traditional Chinese medicine and much more.
The Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog has tips for everyone. Whether the reader is a new dog owner or an old pro at home remedies and health food for dogs, they will gain insight into canine health as a whole as well as their own dog's health and well-being.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
"Your dog's behavior, happiness, health, longevity and overall well-being are inextricably intertwined with what you feed him." Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good reference material for non-holistics too June 14 2003
This book is NOT just for people who believe holistic is the only way to go! So although many reviewers write from that perspective, I strongly suggest that people who love traditional medicine consider it because it provides clear explanations of how a dog's system works, the functions of the organs, and what the various nutrients do in and for the dog. It also provdes an excellent explanation of each section of a blood test or urine test and what the results *mean.* And, it has simple but very complete charts in the back which cover various things from *both* the traditional and the holistic points of view in causes and treatments.
What made me respect this book was that they offer traditional medicine causes and effects, tests and medications, treatments and solutions ... as well as holistic ones. So, both "sides" can get plenty out of it, and perhaps learn something from the beliefs of the "other side" too to get a much more balanced picture of what is going on with their dog.
It is not as simple as most of the consumer oriented books, but it is also not as complex as reading the veterinary medicine web sites. It definitely provides more detail than you may be accustomed to in a "pet health" book.
It provides a good base to research from so you can go look at traditional and alternative medicine web sites and know what the heck you're looking for.
If you don't care for the diet they recommend, or any other "holistic" parts, you can easily ignore them. It's a good reference book, and if you are the type who wants to be really involved in your dog's care and want to know more than what the vet told you, then get this book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars additional information July 6 2012
By maria s
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have read a few dog books and they are slighly difference. In this one you can find a more in depth description that other books just pass by such as kinesiology, TCM plus a diet that this Dr goes by.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars everything _but_ the diet April 28 2003
overall this is a pretty good book. if you use it for what its title suggests, you should be pleased. that is, a holistic guide to a healthy dog. using it for the purpose of creating a new diet for your dog is another matter. the author's "natural diet" is certainly, without a doubt an improvement over most of the garbage fed to dogs in the form of commercial dog food.
however, having said that, if what you are really looking for is a guide to creating a healthy, _raw_ diet for your dog you definitely could do better than this book. ian billinghurst's "give your dog a bone" is what you are looking for. the volhard diet doesnt quite "get" the concept of the BARF ("Bones And Raw Food" _or_ "Biologically Appropriate Raw Food") diet...and unfortunately it _tries_ without much success. the volhard "Natural Diet" is too rigid as well as mis-informed in many cases, and in my opinion too much of a sales pitch.
This book definitely contains some useful info, especially regarding vaccine options, homeopathic remedies, laboratory testing ,etc. For those topics it is excellent. For the topic of "raw diet" i would look at billinghurst.
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By A Customer
This book is exactly what I was looking for. I had a basic idea of what a natural diet should consist of, but no idea how much, which ratios etc, and which supplements to use etc. This book has charts and recipes for each weight group, and tips for making it. It has a section on each ingredient and why it's used. Best of all it's easy to do. The only thing I do different is add way more vegetables. I've been feeding my 12 year old golden retriever this diet for 3 months now and she loves it. She used to be a really picky eater and usually left half her food, and she's always been really skinny. Now she looks healthier,her coat is shinier, her stools are well formed and smaller, and she has more energy. There's tips on what to feed them when travelling, etc. I think it's a great book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars If you consider your dog a member of your family May 12 2004
Discovering the Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog is one of the best discoveries I have made in my life! If you consider your dog a member of your family and you want to do everything you can to hlep it have a long, healthy, long life this book is for you. It comes complete with a chat room of wonderful people who can answer most any question you have regarding the diet.
It's a book that you will refer to over and over - the first thing you will consult when you think there might be a problem.
We have used the diet recommended in the book for two for more than 5 years. Our vet applauds our efforts.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Holistic Guide for A Healthy Dog May 6 2004
By A Customer
This diet has been backed by years of documented laboratory research. I had read books and listened to others regarding raising my dogs the way nature intended but only Wendy's book really made sense to me. Since switching my dogs from "cardboard" dog food to raw I wonder why it took me so long! My dogs are thriving on the Volhard Natural Diet. Not only does the book advise on diet but also vaccinations, kinesiology, homeopathy, complementary therapies and the five element theory. Thanks, Wendy, for a life style change for my dogs . . . and me!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Nutrition "Bible" for your dog! Aug. 8 2002
By A Customer
I think this is the best and only book you need on Canine Nutrition. The Volhard Natural Diet is the absolute best you can do for your dog; and its claims and theories are backed up by 30 years of research and Veterinarian recommendations. I had a VERY sick dog whom I changed over to this diet after 7 years of feeding commerical dog food. Within weeks she was getting better and returning to the health of her puppyhood - which is quite a feat as she was on death's door. I truly believe my dog wouldn't be here today without the information I gleaned from this book to get her to a healthier, more natural state. I can't say enough about this book! Buy it today - your dog will thank you. My own copy is worn and dog-eared and on my kitchen counter for constant reference!
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars 80% Spectacular.
This book is filled with some very very useful information, but some of it should be taken with a grain of salt. Read more
Published on Aug. 7 2002 by David Oesterle
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting--offers a very good overview!
This book does cover some topics which some may refer to as "hocus-pocus." However, most of the information in this book is very helpful and if you can keep an open mind... Read more
Published on June 11 2002 by Orange Smoothie
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended reading for all dog owners
Now in an updated and expanded second edition, Holistic Guide For A Healthy Dog continues to be a premier resource and reference for dog owners concerned with the improvement and... Read more
Published on Feb. 10 2001 by Midwest Book Review
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Update of a Classic
This is the second edition of a classic. Wendy Volhard and Kerry Brown, D.V.M. have updated and improved on one of the best all around guides to caring for your dog. Read more
Published on Oct. 10 2000 by Shannon Wilkinson
5.0 out of 5 stars Clinically Proven Diet and Valuable Resource Guide
The Volhard diet has 30 years of experience and clinical testing behind it. The basic diet as given in the hardcover edition therefore has not changed but this second edition is... Read more
Published on June 11 2000 by Bethanne Elion
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally a book so I can learn how to feed my dogs!
At long last a book that tells you the owner why and how to feed a BALANCED whole food diet! After years of doing what I thought was the best thing for my dogs, feeding nothing... Read more
Published on June 5 2000 by C.J. Landry
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