Finding The Right Veterinarian For Your Labrador Retrievers

What Is a Holistic Veterinarian?

Unlike a conventional veterinarian, holistic veterinarians utilize treatments such as acupuncture, aromatherapy, chiropractic practice, and homeopathy in their treatment plans. Holistic veterinarians have traditionally been thought of as only using treatment plans that avoid drugs, surgery, and other conventional therapies. Holistic veterinarians typically have the same training as conventional veterinarians but have sought to learn other modes of treatment that may not be considered main stream. They typically incorporate multi-modal, whole body approaches to treatment and may utilize more alternative methods to help a pet than a conventional veterinarian might pursue.

Many holistic veterinarians avoid vaccines and medications, but a holistic approach to veterinary medicine is gradually being incorporated into many conventional treatments sometimes making the line between conventional and holistic medicine blurry.

Why Choose a Holistic Veterinarian?

Holistic veterinarians are different from conventional veterinarians. Animal health care in general is split. There are conventional vets, holistic vets and, more recently, integrative vets. While many principles are shared among practices, methodologies are often quite different.

Traditional veterinary practice (conventional) is much like what Western medicine is for humans. The focus is aimed at determining what the problem is and then trying to solve it.

While a traditional veterinarian is a professional with your pet’s best interest at heart, he or she is sometimes at a loss as to how to best solve a chronic or undetermined condition. Western medicine is based primarily in pharmacological medicine. Many times a conventional veterinarian will look to prescribe medication that may silence symptoms but not resolve the underlying problem.

Conventional veterinary medicine has become increasingly advanced and a wide array of techniques and options are now available to the average pet owner. Ultrasound, x-ray, MRI, chemotherapy, blood transfusion, and physical therapy are commonly used and, as many of us know, tend to run up the bill.

Take a look at why you should consider a holistic veterinarian for your pet.

Lots of pet owners fall back on traditional veterinarians and chemical treatments for their furry friends, despite the fact that they’ve long abandoned these things for themselves. So, why this disparity?

Perhaps many animal lovers don’t even know about all of the options available to them when it comes to alternative medicine and health. If you’re interested in changing the way you view your pet’s care, a great place to start is by consulting a holistic veterinarian, whose care can offer your animals several health benefits.

1. Preventative care

If you’re like a lot of pet owners, your animal only sees his doctor when he’s hurt or sick. By that point, however, the only thing the vet can do is treat the resulting effect of underlying health issues that cause problems. Integrative care challenges this practice and asks, “Why repair what’s broken again and again if you can prevent it from breaking in the first place?”

Just like practitioners of alternative human medicine, holistic vets seek to help you maintain your pet’s health through daily lifestyle choices. The guiding philosophy of integrative care, both animal and human, is that the body knows how to care for and heal itself. It’s the holistic veterinarian’s role is to help animals do just that. Essentially, your holistic vet would love it if you rarely had to bring your pet in at all.

2. Bedside manner

For human health care workers of any kind, bedside manner is a big deal. If you were to visit a new dentist or optometrist or acupuncturist who didn’t make eye contact, treated you roughly or didn’t respond to your expressions of pain, you almost certainly would never return to that person again. Personal rapport is often a significant part of how we assess medical professionals. Yet, we may not think of that aspect of care as much when it comes to our pets.

What sets holistic vets apart is that they prioritize empathy in both exams and treatments. They aim to give care in a way that results in the least possible stress for your animals. For example, they may sometimes employ methods such as Reiki and massage to calm animals that are stressed. You can appreciate how important this is if you’ve ever seen your dog or cat have an extremely adverse reaction immediately upon entering a traditional vet’s office.

3. Whole health

Get ready to spend a bit more time in your holistic vet’s office than you would normally spend in a traditional vet’s office. This is due to the fact that integrative pet care capitalizes on a much more complete picture of health. A mere physical exam is not early enough to understand your animal’s unique needs – the doctor or practitioner will also need information about your pet’s behavior, lifestyle, diet, social habits and observed irregularities in any of these aspects.

If you think about how in-depth your conversations often are with your own healthcare practitioners, this makes perfect sense. Imagine how strange it would be for a doctor to perform a physical exam without asking you about your lifestyle. An incomplete picture would result in an incomplete diagnosis. Holistic vets know this and make sure to get all the facts before recommending treatments.

4. Treatment variety

Holistic veterinarians have a diverse arsenal of treatment options available to them. Though the idea may seem foreign to you, pet health can be significantly improved through treatments like acupuncture, herbal remedies, chiropractic, massage, and nutritional therapy.

This should come as happy news to owners of pets with chronic issues that leave them in a never-ending cycle of surgeries and pharmaceuticals. Holistic vets do not treat every animal with a one-size-fits-all approach; instead, they assess each case deeply in order to recommend a unique course of non-invasive treatments that seek to cure the underlying causes of illness.

What is Holistic Veterinary Medicine?

Holistic medicine, by its very nature, is humane to the core. The techniques used in holistic medicine are gentle, minimally invasive, and incorporate patient well-being and stress reduction. Holistic thinking is centered on love, empathy, and respect.

In treating an animal, a holistic veterinarian will determine the best combination of both conventional and alternative (or complementary) therapies for a given individual. This mixture of healing arts and skills is as natural as life itself. Therein lies the very essence of the word “(w)holistic.” It means taking in the whole picture of the patient—the environment, the disease pattern, the relationship of pet with owner—and developing a treatment protocol using a wide range of therapies for healing the patient. The holistic practitioner is interested not only in a medical history, but also genetics, nutrition, environment, family relationships, stress levels, and other factors.

Many patients present in a state of “disease.” At this point the holistic challenge lies in the question “why?” A simple-appearing symptom may have several layers of causation. When one area of the body is ill, it can manifest in many different ways. Only when the true cause of the ailment has been found is there the possibility for a lasting recovery.

Through a series of analytic observations and appropriate testing, the goal becomes finding the true root source of the pathology. It is at this point that the most efficacious, least invasive, least expensive, and least harmful path to cure is selected.

Potential Dangers of Holistic Treatment Options

Ignoring science-backed options can be very dangerous to pet owners and their pets if a pet owner chooses to seek holistic treatment options for their pets. For example, vaccinations are proven to be effective means of disease control and prevention and should not be ignored despite the fact that many strictly-holistic veterinarians may not offer them. Completely avoiding the use of necessary medications to treat pain and infection, not having necessary surgery performed in order to avoid anesthesia, and other types of avoidance of necessary traditional veterinary medicine can be very harmful to a pet. Science has produced a variety of options to help us care for our pets and it should not be ignored or avoided. Some holistic options are backed by science but, once again, should be utilized as adjunctive treatments and not the only treatments.

Improve Your Vision With These Effective Eye Care Tips

Untreated Chronic Dry Eye Complications and Risks

Chronic dry eye is a condition where your eyes either don’t produce enough tears, or they produce low quality tears. It can be uncomfortable and cause symptoms like a gritty sensation in your eyes or redness. The severity of dryness varies from person to person. If you have a milder case of dry eye, you might shrug it off. But if it’s not going away or seems to be getting worse, it’s time to seek further treatment. Tears are necessary for eye health. They lubricate your eyes and wash away debris that can cause irritation. If left untreated, dry eye can progress and cause complications that affect the quality of your life.

Here’s a look at a few complications that can occur if you aren’t properly treating chronic dry eye.

Corneal ulcer

A corneal ulcer is an open sore that develops on your cornea, which is the clear, protective outer layer of your eyes. These ulcers typically occur after an injury, but severely dry eyes can also play a role.

Debris like dirt and other particles can sometimes get into your eyes. If your tear glands don’t produce enough tears, your eyes might be unable to wash the particles away.

Debris can then scratch the surface of your cornea. If bacteria gets into the scratch, an infection can develop, causing an ulcer. Corneal ulcers are treatable with antibiotic eye drops. But if left untreated, these ulcers can spread and scar the eyeball, causing partial or complete blindness.


Untreated dry eye can also lead to inflammation of the conjunctiva. This is the clear layer of cells that cover the white part of your eyeball and the inner surface of your eyelids.

This type of inflammation is known as conjunctivitis. Symptoms include redness, light sensitivity, and a gritty feeling in the eyes. This type of conjunctivitis is different from bacterial conjunctivitis. It’s usually milder and doesn’t require treatment, although you should see an eye doctor for inflammation that doesn’t improve or worsens.

Decreased tear production

Dry eyes can occur when you’re unable to produce enough tears. The medical term for this condition is keratoconjunctivitis sicca (ker-uh-toe-kun-junk-tih-VY-tis SIK-uh). Common causes of decreased tear production include:

  • Aging
  • Certain medical conditions, including diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, scleroderma, Sjogren’s syndrome, thyroid disorders and vitamin A deficiency
  • Certain medications, including antihistamines, decongestants, hormone replacement therapy, antidepressants, and drugs for high blood pressure, acne, birth control and Parkinson’s disease
  • Laser eye surgery, though symptoms of dry eyes related to this procedure are usually temporary
  • Tear gland damage from inflammation or radiation

Increased tear evaporation

Common causes of increased tear evaporation include:

  • Wind, smoke or dry air
  • Blinking less often, which tends to occur when you’re concentrating, for example, while reading, driving or working at a computer
  • Eyelid problems, such as out-turning of the lids (ectropion) and in-turning of the lids (entropion)

7 ways to treat and prevent it

When left untreated, dry eye can cause light sensitivity and blurred vision.  Furthermore, under lubricated eyes are more susceptible to scratches or infection.

So how do you treat it?

The following home remedies are good first steps:

  1. Use a humidifier
  2. Wear glasses instead of contacts
  3. Take frequent breaks when staring at computer or TV screens
  4. Sleep for at least eight hours each night
  5. Avoid smoke
  6. Wear sunglasses or a hat
  7. Drink at least six glasses of water per day

If you try those but your dry eye persists, consider an over-the-counter eye lubricant drop. These come in the form of gels or ointments and can provide immediate relief.

If you still experience trouble after that, contact your physician. He or she can provide you with prescription-strength eye drops or, if necessary, discuss surgical options with you. This might include an outpatient procedure to provide punctal plugs, which temporarily close the small duct where tears drain from the eye.

Viral pink eye vs. bacterial pink eye

A virus that causes viral pink eye can spread from your nose to your eyes, or you can catch it when someone sneezes or coughs and the droplets come in contact with your eyes.

Bacteria cause bacterial pink eye. Usually the bacteria spreads to your eyes from your respiratory system or skin. You can also catch bacterial pink eye if you:

  • touch your eye with unclean hands
  • apply makeup that’s been contaminated with bacteria
  • share personal items with someone who has pink eye

Both types of pink eye often start during an upper respiratory infection, such as a cold (virus) or sore throat (virus or bacteria).

Both viral and bacterial pink eye cause the same general symptoms, including:

  • pink or red color in the white of the eyes
  • tearing
  • itchy or scratchy feeling in the eye
  • swelling
  • burning or irritation
  • crusting of the eyelids or lashes, especially in the morning
  • discharge from the eye

Here are a few ways to tell which type of pink eye you have.

Viral pink eye:

  • usually starts in one eye but can spread to the other eye
  • starts with a cold or other respiratory infection
  • causes watery discharge from the eye

Bacterial pink eye:

  • can start with a respiratory infection or an ear infection
  • affects one or both eyes
  • causes a thick discharge (pus) that makes the eyes stick together

Your healthcare provider can tell whether you’ve got a bacterial or a viral infection by taking a sample of the discharge from your eye and sending it to a lab for testing.

Treatment for Eye Infections

Obviously, bacteria cause bacterial infections, and viruses cause different viral infections. The treatments differ depending on whether you have a bacterial or viral infection.

Bacterial infections are often treated with antibiotics, which can kill the bacteria or stop it from multiplying. Antibiotics will not work for viral infections.

Instead, the symptoms of the virus are usually treated directly. There are some antiviral medicines that can stop the virus from reproducing. Certain vaccines can prevent viral infections from occurring in the first place, such as the vaccine for influenza.

Many of the common bacterial infections of the eye will readily clear up once you are prescribed an antibiotic or some other treatment like eye drops. Some of the more common viral eye infections may resolve on their own, but they may require antiviral eye drops or even steroids to reduce inflammation.

A Cosmetic Dermatologist Should Learn The Latest Technology

Dermatologists: What do they do?

A dermatologist is a doctor that specializes in treating skin, hair, nail, and mucous membrane disorders and diseases. They can also address cosmetic issues, helping to revitalize the appearance of the skin, hair, and nails.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that, in the United States, there were 39 million visits to office-based dermatologists, who were not federally employed, in 2010. Below, we explore common issues that dermatologists encounter, the treatments they offer, and the qualifications involved.

What is dermatology?

Dermatology is an area of medicine that focuses on health issues affecting the skin, hair, nails, and mucous membranes.


It is important to know that a dermatologist has a full license or certification before visiting them. Some practitioners in spas and beauty clinics call themselves dermatologists but do not have the necessary accreditation

Common conditions

Being a dermatologist requires a great depth of clinical knowledge, including, for example, the various internal health problems that can cause skin symptoms

How to Choose a Dermatologist

The importance of learning about your skin and how to take great care of it is substantial—and oftentimes overlooked. As the body’s largest organ, the skin needs consistent upkeep to remain healthy and in its top condition, which is why people bathe, moisturize, and visit their dermatologist on a regular basis

Dermatology is complex yet vital to your health, especially in Arizona—a state known for high temperatures and constant sunshine. People carrying on with their normal routine in temperatures reaching as high as 115 degrees during the summer need to pay extra attention to their skin.

That’s where your dermatologist comes in. It takes a licensed professional with years of experience to diagnose a variety of rashes, moles, and other irregularities that might occur, as well as prescribe the right treatment based on your personal needs.

But what are the top qualities you should look for in a dermatologist in the sunny? Well to start, we recommend doing your research before choosing a dermatologist, and establishing a set of expectations before your first visit.

Dermatologists, what do they do exactly?

You should know that Dermatology isn’t all rashes, facelifts, and fillers. Dermatology encompasses the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of all diseases related to the skin, hair, nails, and oral cavity. These specialists in white coats aren’t all talk, they literally do it all!

Tips for Choosing the Right Skincare Products

A silky-smooth texture, a vibrant glow, and a rich, even color are hallmarks of beautiful skin. If that’s what you’re after, you must develop a rock-solid skincare routine that involves choosing the right products. Though intimidating at first, with a little bit of knowledge you’ll find yourself whizzing through the world of skincare like a pro.

Tips for Choosing the Right Skincare Products

From fancy creams and serums to masks and ointments, selecting skincare products can seem overwhelming, especially when you don’t know what you’re looking for or where to start. Your skin is as unique as a fingerprint, and caring for it means learning how to build your own routine with the right products to support your skincare goals. Use these tips to get started.

Know your skin type

Getting to know your skin type is the best place to start when you’re considering building a skincare routine. Figure out your skin type — oily, dry, sensitive, or combination. The goal is to add products to your regimen designed for your specific skin type.

Know your needs

Take some time to think about your skin’s needs. Perhaps you have fine lines that you want to diminish. Maybe you have persistent acne that isn’t responding to your normal routine, or large pores that you want to minimize the appearance of. The products you choose need to effectively address the issues you’re most concerned about.

Know the basics

Regardless of what type of skin you have, the four skincare commandments form the basis of every good regimen


We are an internationally recognized Department that offers our patients expert and individualized care. Using the most advanced medical tools available, we achieve outstanding results.

We diagnose and treat a wide range of conditions, including:

Common skin issues: eczema, acne, warts, psoriasis, and others

Complex skin disorders: skin cancer, autoimmune disorders, skin problems due to systemic illnesses

Cosmetic concerns: fine lines and wrinkles, hair removal, unwanted tattoos, acne scars, skin rejuvenation, and others

Exceptional dermatologists: Our Department’s medical and surgical dermatologists are all highly trained and experienced. Our team of dermatologists includes leading experts in their fields, all of whom have made significant achievements in patient care, research, and academic teaching.

Convenient, personalized care: Whether treating the simplest issue or the most complex conditions, our physicians put patients first. Each patient receives a unique care plan based upon their individual condition and goals.

Proven patient satisfaction: Our approach has led to high patient satisfaction rates among our 70,000 patient visits per year


Tips for Finding the Right Person to Help You Look Your Best

A qualified cosmetic dermatologist, supported by the equipment and resources of a quality facility, can do wonders to help you feel better about your appearance and maintain healthy skin. This article provides tips to help you select the skin-care specialist who you will feel best seeing.

Quality – A knowledgeable, qualified specialist will help you select the right treatments that will achieve the best results for you.

Safety –  Most importantly, a qualified professional will have the training and qualifications to provide an equal commitment to your safety and health.

Here’s a list of questions that you should ask any clinic offering these services:

Does a board certified physician actually perform or supervise the treatments on-site? Board certification means the doctor has had additional training and testing in that specialty.

Is the doctor a Board Certified: Dermatologist by either the American Academy of Dermatology or the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology? These are the only two legitimate dermatology certifying bodies in the US.

If a patient has a complication or unwanted side effect, what happens? It is important to have confidence in your provider’s protocols in these situations.

How long has the clinic been providing these treatments? Make sure you feel good about how long the facility has been providing the treatment you will receive.

Who is the medical director of your clinic and are they a Board Certified: Dermatologist, Plastic Surgeon, Ophthalmologist or Otolaryngologist?

Can you have a consultation with a Board Certified Dermatologist at your appointment?

Does the medical director actually see and treat patients at your clinic or does your clinic/medispa use their name, Drug Enforcement Agency number and medical license to purchase medically controlled products/lasers and medications (like BOTOX® Cosmetic and Restylane) in exchange for financial compensation?

When coming in for a medical or laser treatment is a complete medical history taken and reviewed by a board certified physician before any treatments are provided?This is important to ensure extra precautions are taken if your medical history warrants them or indicates a particular procedure could not be safe.

Does anyone affiliated with your clinic have any sanctions against them filed with the State Board of Medical or Nursing Practice?

Save A Child With A Pediatric Stethoscope

Choosing a Pediatrician

Choosing a pediatrician might not appear to be important early in pregnancy, but selecting a pediatrician is very important. Many women begin their search for a pediatrician during their second trimester of pregnancy.

What is a Pediatrician?

A pediatrician is a medical doctor that specializes in the care of infants, adolescents, and children as old as 21. Many pediatricians are also trained in subspecialties such as neonatal medicine and cardiology.

What services do Pediatricians provide?

Pediatricians provide preventive care to healthy children and medical care to children with illnesses. The care they provide includes physical, mental and emotional support. Most pediatricians offer a variety of services for children and their parents.

How are Pediatricians trained?

Pediatricians must complete the requirements set by the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP).

How do I find the right Pediatrician for my child?

Asking friends, relatives and your prenatal care provider for referrals is a good start. The write down the important questions that need to be answered such as whether you prefer a male or female pediatrician or the approximate age of the pediatrician (if it matters to you).

Tips for Choosing a Pediatrician

A Personal Decision

Choosing a pediatrician is one of the most important decisions you will make for your child’s health. Your pediatrician serves as your child’s primary care doctor. Your pediatrician will guide you through many decisions about protecting your child’s health or treating a condition. How do you find the best pediatrician who is right for your family? Here are important factors to keep in mind.

Get Referrals

Start with a referral list from your own doctor. You can also ask family, friends, and other healthcare providers for recommendations. If you’re new to an area, ask your former pediatrician for a referral in your new town. Then, take the time to research the pediatricians’ credentials and experience on As you narrow your list, visit open houses that many practices offer so you can learn about the practice. You can also make appointments to meet and interview the pediatricians.

Research the Pediatrician’s Credentials

Board certification is one of the most important factors to consider when selecting a pediatrician. It tells you that the doctor has the necessary training, skills and experience to provide healthcare for your child. Also confirm that the pediatrician has no history of malpractice claims or disciplinary actions. You can find the pediatrician’s medical school, training hospital, certifications, and malpractice and disciplinary history on and state websites.

Consider the Pediatrician’s Experience

Parents call upon their pediatrician for everything from well-child visits and routine physicals to allergy and chronic headache treatments. So experience matters. The more experience a pediatrician has, the better your results are likely to be. If your child has a specific condition, such as ADHD, ask how many patients with the condition the pediatrician has treated. If you know that your child will need a specific procedure, ask how many of the procedures the doctor has performed and find out about complication rates—complications the doctor has encountered as well as your own risk of complications.

Consider Gender

Most likely, your baby or toddler will not care whether a doctor is male or female. While you may have your own preference for your child, think about the years to come. For example, embarrassment or fear of a pelvic exam or breast exam may be a reason that a teenage girl would prefer a female doctor. If gender is not something you want to base your decision on right now, consider choosing a larger practice with both male and female doctors.

Tips for Selecting a Pediatrician

A pediatrician is a doctor who has undergone special additional training to work with infants, children and adolescents. Pediatricians have the knowledge and experience about the physical, emotional and social development of children to give your child care that’s just right for his or her age and stage of life

Plan Ahead

The best time to find a pediatrician for your baby is before he or she is born

Because your baby will need to see a doctor frequently within the first weeks of life, it’s very helpful to choose the right pediatrician well in advance.

Board Certification

It’s a good idea to make sure the pediatrician you would like to meet is board-certified.

Board-certified pediatricians have completed not only medical school and residency programs (on-the-job training) in pediatrics, but they’ve also passed a rigorous exam given by the American Board of Pediatrics.

Choosing a Pediatrician for Your New Baby

From the day you learn you’re pregnant, you make decisions that last your child’s lifetime — like the name you choose for your baby. To give your newborn the healthiest possible start, you’ll want to find a pediatrician to care for your child from their first wellness visit through the teen years. Here are tips on how to find that doctor.

When Should I Start Looking for a Pediatrician?

It’s a good idea to start looking for a doctor about 3 months before your baby is due. Ask for recommendations from relatives, friends, neighbors, coworkers, and doctors you know. Then, check your insurance company’s website to see if the doctors are in your plan.

Pediatrician or Family Physician: What’s the Difference?

Most pediatricians and the nurses and physician assistants in their practices see children and teens up to age 21. Pediatric training focuses on treating children from birth until adulthood. Family physicians take care of patients of all ages, from kids to seniors

MD or DO: What’s the Difference?

Pediatricians can graduate from medical school with either an MD (doctor of medicine) or a DO (doctor of osteopathy) degree. Both degrees train doctors to diagnose and treat diseases — and to try to prevent them when possible.

What Does “Board Certified” Mean?

At the end of their residency, doctors can take exams to be “board certified” in their field — in general pediatrics, for example, or in a pediatric specialty like orthopedics. These exams are set by the governing body in a field of medicine, like the AAP, and they’re not easy to pass.

Tips for Choosing a Pediatrician When Expecting

Choosing the right pediatrician doesn’t just help your baby, it also helps you. A pediatrician and his or her staff can provide you with valuable advice on caring for your newborn, from sleep tips to breastfeeding support

What to Ask When Interviewing Pediatricians

Because your pediatrician will play such an important role in your child’s life, it’s a good idea to meet and talk with potential candidates before you make a decision

Background and Credentials

Our Find a Doctor tool lets you look up Sutter-affiliated doctors by name or specialty to see a biographical sketch, including education, board certification, hospital privileges, special interests and other helpful information. If you have questions, you can also check the status of a doctor’s license online at The American Board of Pediatrics website

Philosophy of Care

Discuss decisions likely to come up, such as circumcision (if you are expecting a boy), nutrition and vaccination. Some pediatricians also include philosophy of care as part of their online physician profile. It is important that your beliefs and philosophy on parenting are compatible with your pediatrician’s philosophy of care.

Office Procedures

Find out how well your pediatrician’s office systems work with your schedule and specific needs. Ask how to make an appointment, how far in advance you will need to schedule an appointment and how long you will have to wait to see the pediatrician once you arrive.