Each month holistic veterinarian Dr. Deva Khalsa V.M.D. answers questions on veterinary issues. Send your questions toDr. Khalsa is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, a Fellow and Professor of the British Institute of Homeopathy and has lectured both nationally and internationally. She is the co-author of Healing Your Horse: Alternative Therapies and Dr. Khalsa’s Natural Dog.
Dear Dr. Khalsa,
My 11 year old cat, Mitzi, appears to be in good health. She can scamper across a 50 foot lawn and easily goes up and down stairs. However, when I pet her lightly on her back, she lets out an angry growl and slinks away as if in pain. Her spine is apparently tender. Arnica 200 seems to relieve the pain as she no longer reacts that way for about 6 days after a dose. I have to repeat the Arnica once a week. What might be going on and what would you suggest?
Dr. Deva Khalsa: She may have a pinched nerve or a rib somewhat out of alignment. Once, someone came to me because her cat was always angry at and swatting at the other cats and she wanted a remedy for the bad temperament of the cat. Upon examination, some of her vertebrae were out of alignment, the nerves of her spine were pinched and thus painful. One chiropractic adjustment handled it all and she never needed a remedy. She did not want to play because she was hurting. It would be great if you could find a competent chiropractor who does animals or a veterinarian who is trained in chiropractic and first check if this might be the problem.
Dear Dr. Khalsa
I have a 13 yr. old dog with interstitial lung disease. The vet placed him on doxcyline and says that is all that can be done. Is there anything else that could help him?
Dr. Deva Khalsa: Interstitial lung disease is not common in dogs at all. There are a number of presentations and the cause is unknown. Does your dog have pulmonary hypertension? What are his symptoms? Without more information I cannot help. I suggest you my site and make a professional consult with me.
I have a 3 month old kitten. For the last month I have observed that her lower limbs (both) are weak, as they lack strength compared to the other two…she walks and literally trembles and then falls down. Even while running she runs a small distance accurately then trembles and her back legs slide from under her. There is no history of any injury. What would be your suggestion?
Maaviya Irshad (student of homoeopathy) New Delhi
Dr. Deva Khalsa: It’s likely the mother of the kitten had an infection when pregnant. We would need some history of where they got the kitten, etc. One possibility is cerebellar hypoplasia:
Brain Tissue Underdevelopment in Cats – Cerebellar Hypoplasia in Cats
Cerebellar hypoplasia occurs when parts of the cerebellum are not completely developed. This condition can occur due to intrinsic (genetic) causes, or due to extrinsic causes like infections, toxins or nutritional deficiencies. Symptoms are visible when kittens begin to stand and walk, around six weeks of age.
Symptoms and Types
- Head bobbing
- Limb tremors
- Aggravated by movement or eating
- Disappear during sleep
- Unsteadiness or clumsiness with a wide-based stance
- Unable to judge distance and disequilibrium:
- Falling, flipping over
- Slight improvement may occur as patient accommodates its deficits
Animals affected with cerebellar hypoplasia will usually show signs at birth or shortly thereafter. Kittens may show a slow progression of symptoms over the course of weeks or months. After the final postnatal (infant stage) onset of cerebellar hypoplasia, your kitten should not show any further progression of signs of this disorder. Age, breed, family or health history, and typical non-progressive symptoms are usually sufficient for a tentative diagnosis
Hello Dr. Khalsa,
I have a Golden Retriever and she is 4 years old. There are two problems. First, she has black, round spots, some big and some small all over her body. Secondly, she gets dandruff and her hair falls off. At back near the tail, her hair is falling more and one or two spots are bald. She’s had this problem for the past 2 years always itching everywhere. She is generally friendly but sometimes aggressive. I am really worried please help.
Dr. Deva Kalsa: I wish I had pictures of the spots. She could have ringworm (your vet can check using a Woods Lamp and/or doing a fungal culture) and the remedy for that is Bacillinum from 30 to 200th potency and give it twice a day for two weeks then twice a week for two months. She should also have a full thyroid test. Ask your veterinarian to do a complete thyroid panel, not just the T4. Give her a human zinc supplement at the human dose. Get her started on Canine Everyday Essentials at and I would suggest ing me via my site for a consultation.
Dear Dr. Khalsa
Our beloved “Eastly”, an 11 year old English Black Labrador suffers from Laryngeal Paralysis. It was diagnosed about 1 year ago, but has become more distinct in the last 6 months. He is in otherwise good health for an older gentlemen. During a small growth removal a year ago the vet stated he might be at the early stages of Lar Par due to the difficulty intubating him. We are hesitant to do any corrective or tie back surgery on him due to his age, our finances and percentages of success. Lately, however, he has been vomiting periodically after eating. He eats kibble from a raised bowl. His food is Salmon based. I found a suggestion of using Causticum from a 2004 post on your site. Would that or any other remedy help?
Laura – Southern California
Dr. Deva Khalsa: Gelsemium and Causticum are both good remedies for this. Tie back surgery often results in aspiration pneumonia so it is not the end-all fixit for this kind of problem. Have you had his thyroid checked? Dogs with this are commonly hypothyroid and the English Black Labrador is one that is prone to hypothyroidism. Correcting the problem, if there is one, with the thyroid using normal thyroid medication will not make the paralysis better but will help prevent further decline.
Hi Dr. Khalsa
A rescue dog I am fostering is suffering from chronic ear infections. She has developed hematomas due to the infections. Doctors want to operate, but I know there is a better way. Any suggestions on homeopathic remedies for deep chronic bacterial ear infections in dogs?
Dr. Deva Khalsa: Usually it is the yeast malazessia that is so very itchy in the ear that they scratch the ear so much they get a hematoma – which is a blister of blood. A dog’s ear canal is very deep and can harbor infections even after you think it is cleared up. You say chronic bacterial infections but usually it starts as yeast which is brown and yeasty and can be mistaken for dark wax. There are suggestions but it depends on the Culture and Sensitivity and a number of things. Again, I suggest you make a consult with me with medical records and all the information. A special compounding pharmacy makes up a bolus that one can put in the ear and it is called Roadrunner Pharmacy. Your veterinarian would have to call in the correct script.
Visit Dr. Khalsa at her website for information and consults:
Editor’s Note: The second edition of Dr. Khalsa’s Natural Dog is now available. It’s an exceptional book with information not offered in any similar work. I recommend it highly!
Nutrients for Cats and Dogs
Using her 30 years experience treating animals holistically, Dr. Khalsa designed nutrients just for dogs and cats. VITAL VITIES contain specially selected vitamins, minerals and super-food granules in a delicious base.
Learn more about nutrition for your pet:
All information provided on this site, particularly any information relating to specific medical conditions, health care, preventive care, homeopathy, homeopathic medicine, and healthy lifestyles, is presented for general informational purposes only. It should not be considered complete or exhaustive and does not cover all disorders or conditions or their treatment, nor all health-related issues.