Canine Holistic Therapies
Helen has been training dogs professionally for over a decade and has over 20 years experience in the animal care industry, starting out helping with animals at a local museum at the age of 10. In the past 8 years, Helen developed a deeper interest in human health around 2009 and topics such as the effect of diet on emotions, behaviour and general health.
From this study, backed up training in various therapies and attending seminars by holistic vets, she has been able to apply this to her work with animals. Not only does Helen look at the surface behaviour of the animals she is helping, she will address a variety of topics such as diet, toxins, physical posture, pain, and owner health / emotions.
When studying therapies with strong links to Traditional Chinese Medicine, it is so clear to see that everything is so intrinsically connected that Helen strongly believes in the need to look outside of the traditional teaching where behaviour and health are taught as separate discipline and take a deeper look at the problems and how they are influencing each other.
The world of Eastern and Western methods meet here!
Please see information about the individual therapies available at the bottom of the page. We also offer Kinesiology and Reiki for owners too - great if you are anxious about your dogs behaviour.
Testimonials - Holistic Therapies
Here is a testimonial from a client who had a Kinesiology
session to help with her own anxieties relating to her ability to deal with her
dogs behaviour problem.
"I have suffered with my nerves for years and this affects my ability to train the dogs.
Helen suggested that I should have treatment at the therapy room first before training to see if it would help.
I went to the Therapy Room for a Kinesiology session and my dog had a massage.
It helped me to be more positive and relaxed about training and enable me to help my dog start to overcome her problems too."
~ Lydia and Cahira (Beagle), Bromsgrove 2013
Reiki and Advanced Energy Work
“Reiki” is Japanese for ‘universal life energy’, and is also a work used to describe a system of natural healing. The Reiki tradition was founded by Dr Mikao Usui in the early 20th Century and evolved as a result of his research, experience and dedication.
We live in a world of energy that nourishes and maintains all living things. When this energy flows uninterrupted there is balance and harmony within and around us, we experience a sense of wellbeing.
There are many variations of Reiki, but in essence Reiki treatments can help the body emotionally or spiritually. It is a tradition that is open to any belief system.
Reiki treatment is a process that anyone can enjoy in the normal course of their life. Reiki can be used alongside other conventional or complementary treatment and often helps to provide emotional support during recovery.
The benefits seen in humans, are also seen with animals.
Animal Reiki practitioners use intention, focus and meditation to build an energetic bridge between animal and practitioner. Helen also uses communication methods in her work to assist with this.
When animals are stressed, ill or injured, their energy becomes “imbalanced”. The Reiki practitioner offers the animal’s body support to relax, self heal and “rebalance”. The main function of an animal Reiki session is to reduce stress, a cause of many health and behaviour problems, and allow the body to self heal.
The animals very much lead an energy session and may approach for several minutes at a time for their first session, may choose to absorb the energy from a distance or move closer and have a hands on session.
Reiki (and Advanced Energy Work) can be used for daily maintenance on a physical and emotional level, for assisting to reduce stress and induce a state of relaxation – especially beneficial for Rescue animals, help reduce aggression and behaviour problems, reduce pain and inflammation, help speed recovery when ill or after surgery and support the dying process.
Due to Reiki being used hands on or hands off, it is excellent to use with animals who have handling issues or aggression. It was working with a dog in Rescue in early 2010 which made Helen realise the amazing benefits of Reiki with aggression issues. In 4 weeks she was told that she had made more progress than any other behaviourist had in 4 years – just from using Reiki and then adding a “click to calm” programme.
Reiki is a therapy which is used increasingly in the NHS, especially in palliative care.
Kenco, the dog who started Helen on her animal therapy path in 2010. Kenco had severe aggression issues relating to resource guarding everything (including his kennel) and would only allow very few people touch him.
After 4 months of Reiki and training Helen was playing with him unmuzzled in the paddock.
- The Energy Effect 2008 ~ Nicole Wilde
- Energy Manipulation Techniques 2012
- Animal Communication - Tools & Techniques for Telepathic Developement 2012
- Healing Tools 2013
- Animal Acu-point Therapy 2013
- Animal Communication 2013
Canine Kinesiology and Bodywork
Kinesiology (Touch for Health) offers a holistic approach to
addressing emotional and physical issues within the body as well as looking at
other aspects such as nutrition.
It has Chiropractic, Traditional Chinese Medicine and Tibetan Energy Work at its routes and can be used to help with many types of problems. It is where Western and Eastern methods meet.
Kinesiology is a very complex, but fascinating therapy, which looks beyond the initial symptoms to find a root cause to enable effective action to be taken.
As well as finding Kinesiology techniques beneficial to dogs, Helen has found that Kinesiology proves very beneficial when the owners anxieties about a behaviour problem are effecting the behaviour of the dog. By working with the owner first, the animals recovery can have much higher success rates.
Kinesiology sessions for owners are fully clothed and can take place either stood up or lay down on a ‘couch’, for dogs the sessions will usually involve using the owner as a ‘surrogate’. This is when the owner makes physical contact with the dog and the practitioner uses the owners muscle to test for imbalances within the dogs body.
Some of the ‘corrections’ may include physical corrections and elements of massage. With a Merisha Massage qualification, Helen is able to carry out full or partial massage work on your dog.
Massage is both relaxing and therapeutic and can help your dog in many ways.
Maybe your dog or horse has a behavioural issue due to being in pain? This may be due to a physical injury or operation or due to stress. Often, when stressed or anxious, we tense our body up which can result in muscles becoming tight and sore.
During this time even the smallest of bumps can hurt and often normal movement can even become a challenge.
The same can happen in a dogs body and dogs who are stiff or in pain can suddenly show signs of aggression when approached by other dogs or even animals.
Massage can help induce a state of relaxation as well as releasing tight, sore muscles and remove painful knots or trigger points that can caused referred pain. By using various techniques such as Myofascial Release, restrictive scar tissue can be broken down and injuries rehabilitated.
If you have ever had an injury or been in pain yourself, you will know what a relief it is emotionally when you are able to have improved movement and a reduction in pain.
Signs Massage may be of help:
- Low mood, lack of zest
- Problems getting in and out of the car
- Anxious about being handled or touched
- Sudden aggression to other dogs (with no other reason)
- Ageing or acting much older than they are
- Performance problems in working or sport dogs
- Lameness / Limping
(with vet permission)
- Hip / Elbow Dysplasia
- Chewing parts of the body - especially the legs
- Yelping / Crying when moving / getting up
- No longer wanting to go for walks
- Abnormal Gait (movement) or Posture
- Reflexology for Dogs 2015
- TTouch Workshop for Dogs 2015 and 2010
- Integrating Muscle Testing into Animal Therapies 2013
- Equine Muscles, Movement and Stretching Workshop 2012
- Introduction to Equine Myofascial Release 2013
- Equine Structual Analysis 2013
- Applied Equine Bodywork 2013
Applied Canine Herbal Choices and Nutrition
Herbal Choices is based on the animals natural ability to forage and self select plants and plant extracts for self medication. You may have seen your dog doing this with plants in your garden or out on a walk, or your horse while on a hack. The topic is of growing interest with scientific research now being carried out in this area.
When using Herbal Choices as part of a therapy session, the animal is offered the choice of essential oils, macerated oils and dried plants for self selection. Depending on the reason the dog needs the plants properties they will use it in different ways. They may inhale it, ingest it or even rub on it and apply it topically. An animal may show interest in a plant or oil and then present a certain body part, asking for you to rub it there.
As long as the animal is not hungry or thirsty before the session, they should not choose to overdose when offered plant oils or powder in their pure form. The taste will change from being pleasant to quite repulsive once the body has had enough. This can be identified via the animals body language.
Herbal choices should never be mixed into a meal as this does not allow the dog to be able to self select and therefore overdosing can occur.
A herbal style of well being was once used for all of our health needs and once again, the benefits are being recognised in both human and animal health.
Benefits can be seen in animals with behaviour problems such as nervousness, aggression, anxiety and hormonal issues, digestive disorders, skin and coat problems, immune system disorders and more.
It is also possible to look at the animals main diet and what the body requires at that time. Techniques from Kinesiology can be used for this alongside self selection.
- 3 Seasonal Forages - Spring, Summer and Autumn
- Herbal Classification and Self Selection Principles
- Essential and Macerated Oils, and Dried Herbs
- Raw Feeding Expert Adviser training with Natures Menu 2017
- 5 Elements and Essential Oils 2014
- Canine Nutrition & Feeding and Vaccination 2013 with Holistic Vet Nick Thompson.