Animal holistic health is a form of veterinary medicine that utilizes a complete picture of an animal's behavior, environment, nutrition, lifestyle and disease patterns in order to fully evaluate and diagnose a treatment. Animal holistic medicinal practices focus on using minimally invasive and gentle techniques by taking the least harmful path. By addressing all possible sources of causation, an animal may have a better chance at long lasting recovery. Treatment in animal holistic health may be combined with aspects of traditional Western medicine, such as surgery and drug therapy, in addition to holistic treatments that provide complementary healing.
Most often, certificates are available for veterinarians and other animal professionals who already have their doctorate degree in veterinary medicine and are looking to further specialize their practice. Certificate programs and seminars are available through The American Holistic Veterinary Medicine Association (AHVMA) and The Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy. Certificate programs in animal homeopathy must be approved by the Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy, must meet accrediting guidelines and have a 6 month minimum time line.
Certificate program specializations include veterinary homeopathy, acupuncture, physical therapy and animal nutrition.
Certificate in Animal Holistic Health
Veterinarians typically graduate with a bachelor's degree in biology or zoology before going on to train at an accredited school of veterinary medicine. Other certificate programs in animal holistic health, depending on the specialty, are typically offered as summer seminars or as self-paced programs on weekends and after hours. Some common courses that may be offered are:
- Common animal ailments
- Alternative animal therapies using the principle of resonance
- Influences of nutrition on animal behavior
- Allergies in pets
- Usages of homeopathic medicines
- Veterinary herbal medicine
- Introduction to small animal osteopathy
A variety of options exist for veterinarians or zoologists who desire to specialize in the holistic and homeopathic sciences. Some possible career alternatives include:
- Holistic veterinarian
- Physical therapist
- Animal nutritionist
- Animal chiropractor
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, (www.bls.gov), veterinary practice is projected to grow by 9% in overall employment between 2014 and 2024, which is faster-than-average for all occupations. In addition, as of May 2015, the median salary for a veterinarian was $88,490.
Certificate programs in holistic animal health topics are available to veterinarians and other animal professionals who want to offer holistic care, since degree programs in holistic animal health studies are not available. Possible topics of study include acupuncture, nutrition, physical therapy, and homeopathy.