This is the letter I wrote to JAVMA (Journal of the American Vet Med Ass.) which they would not publish. I still strongly believe however that every pet owner should be informed, by their veterinarian, about every available treatment option.
This extremely informative, well-researched and very well-produced movie should be seen by everyone.
Our beloved Golden Retriever, Rufus, started having nose bleeds in May 2008. Following an MRI we received a diagnosis of an aggressive nasal tumor.
Is Vaccination for Cats Helpful or Harmful?
Why is Dr. Jeff Feinman's vet practice the holistic choice for pet care?
Thank you for your interest in my practice. I offer both preventive care as well as management of chronic diseases. Homeopathic medicine, healthy lifestyle and nutritional counseling is the mainstay of my practice. I emphasize working through symptoms rather than against them (e.g. with ANTI-inflammatories) them. Symptoms are signs that the body gives, clues that enable me to help your pet. I do not generally make use of "routine" vaccines or drugs. In addition, species-appropriate diet and supplementation (when indicated) will help the healing process.
The best time to begin holistic preventive care is when your pet is "healthy" or is a puppy or kitten. In these cases it is usually relatively simple to treat any problems that arise.
However, since we may not start working together until later in life, problems have already arisen (and been suppressed). Although improvement can sometimes be seen quickly in these difficult situations, it can also take months and years of treatment to make significant progress.
A large part of my practice is management of such chronic and degenerative disorders as recurrent ear and skin “infections”, arthritis, allergies, metabolic/endocrine imbalances and cancer. In these cases, a diagnostic workup may be recommended because appropriate test results can sometimes help quantify the disease process.
Ascertaining the degree of structural pathology (if any) will help me determine a prognosis and treatment plan. Length of treatment will depend upon the chronicity and depth of the condition and number of and response to prior suppressions. Most acute situations can be properly resolved over a few days or weeks, whereas lifelong problems can take 1-3 years.
During treatment, we will gradually discontinue (when possible) conventional drugs such as antibiotics and steroids. This will help your pet's body heal naturally.
Using any "anti"-drug (e.g. anti-biotic or anti-inflammatory) during homeopathic treatment is like trying to drive your car with the brakes on. If other symptoms appear during treatment (or if older, previous conditions return) you will be expected to contact me for an appropriate response, rather than use drugs that you may have used before.
How much will it cost?
If you are like most of us, one of the first things you want to know is what this is going to cost. So, even though helping your pet is the most important thing, I want to address this question right away and as completely as I can.
My hourly rate is $240. Phone or Skype routine wellness visits last around 30 minutes. In office exam and updates usually are ~45 minutes. Appointments are billed in 15 minute increments.
Initial consultations, including a detailed history and evaluation of any previous records, typically take 1-2 hours. If performed within the first month, the initial consultation charge includes the first fifteen minutes of follow-up.
All other time spent on your pet's case is based on the regular hourly rate. This includes emergency care and time spent updating on the phone (if longer than a few minutes), corresponding by e-mail, reviewing diagnostic tests done by other veterinarians, etc.
We require that a current credit card be kept on file, and payment is expected at the time services are rendered (we do not bill). We work with all of the pet insurance companies, including Pet Plan and Embrace, which are among those that cover veterinary homeopathic treatment.There is a $25 missed appointment charge if your appointment is not canceled 24 hours in advance. Due to the length of new patient initial evaluations, there is a $50.00 non-refundable deposit that will be applied to your first visit.
Healthy-pet routine care costs the same as going to the conventional veterinary clinic. A complete healthy pet annual consultation usually lasts 20-30 minutes. I cannot emphasize enough how important these wellness visits are for your pet's quality of life and longevity. By maintaining optimal health, we are preventing serious disease later in life (and dramatically reducing future veterinary costs).
What should I bring to my first appointment?
Please sign and return the treatment authorization and questionnaire prior to your first appointment.
Fax, mail or bring with you any medical records from your previous veterinarian(s). These should include any specialists with whom you have consulted, as well as emergency visit records.
A "diagnosis" or description of the problem as well and lab results and other diagnostics will be very helpful. Use the following suggestions to help you organize your thoughts prior to your first appointment.
To help with the diagnosis and treatment, please provide an account, in your own words, of your pet's condition and history. Include current illnesses, as well as previous conditions. For example, if you are coming in for evaluation of a metabolic condition, it would be very helpful to know about prior ear infections, allergies, skin growths, etc. Prior conditions treated with drugs or surgery are especially important.
In addition, I need to know specifics about your pet's appetite, what/when/how s/he eats, and if there is or has been diarrhea, vomiting, coughing, discharges etc. Factors such as temperature preferences, sleep patterns, favorite activities, behavior problems and any likes or dislikes are all relevant.
In sum, I would like to know everything about your pet. Please see the current client "Observing Symptoms" article for more help. There are also personality profile examples posted in the homeopathy folder in my forum.
If you would like to do some reading before our appointment, Drs. Don Hamilton ("Homeopathic Care for Cats and Dogs") and Richard Pitcairn both have written excellent books. The documents at my website will also provide a wealth of information.
I look forward to meeting you and helping to improve your pet's life. Feel free to contact my office or post an "Ask Dr. Jeff" query if you have any questions.
--Dr. Jeff Feinman (bio is here)
Click here for some client reviews.
How does radiation therapy work?
Radiation, when used at energies that are a thousand times the energies used to produce a chest X-ray, can kill cells. Both normal and cancer cells are affected, but radiation treatment is intended and designed to maximize tumor effect and minimize normal tissue effect. Maximizing tumor effect is one reason that radiation treatments are given as a series of many small doses, rather than a few large doses.
What are the benefits of radiation therapy and when is it used?
Radiation therapy is used to treat localized disease. It can be used in the management of cancers that cannot be treated successfully by surgery or chemotherapy alone. Typically, it is employed following surgery when there are tumor cells remaining after excision, either because of the biology of that cancer and the nature of its growth, or because complete surgical removal would involve a very extensive procedure involving vital structures. In some instances, radiation therapy may be employed before surgery or chemotherapy in an attempt to shrink a tumor down to a more manageable size. Radiation therapy can offer, in some instances, permanent control of a tumor.
Even when a cure is not possible, radiation therapy can still bring some relief. Shrinking a large tumor with radiation therapy may improve a pet's quality of life by reducing pressure, bleeding, or pain. This is called palliative treatment.
Mast cell tumors (MCT) in dogs are very common, accounting for approximately 20% of all skin tumors in dogs. For most dogs, the underlying cause promoting the development of the tumor is not known.