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Pet Diets Benefit from Careful Monitoring

Jul 23, 2014 02:44PM ● By Linda Stern

Whole foods, which have been used as medicine for centuries, have many properties that are not always obvious. If we feed fruits or vegetables to our dog or cat, we need to juice it or cook it, because they lack the enzymes to digest the cell walls. Rabbits, rodents, Guinea pigs and other vegetarian species can assimilate them readily in raw form.

Some foods to help all animals boost their qi life force energy include cherries, figs, pumpkins and squash. Some foods to help with digestive stagnation (pain and masses) include carrots, parsley, turmeric and vinegar.

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), foods are also classified by the way they are metabolized in the body, causing cooling or warming. This is helpful to understand when we attempt to balance a pet’s constitution. If they emit too much heat, we may want to use cooling foods such as watermelon, cucumber, broccoli, apple and banana. In the opposite case, we can warm them up with pumpkin, thyme or sweet potato. To drain a pet’s “damp” (discharges of most kinds), use lemon, thyme, ginger and grapefruit peel.

Humans are not the only beneficiaries of centuries of TCM knowledge; our four-legged friends and companions may share in that bounty of wisdom, as well.

Dr. Linda T. Stern has trained in food therapy and is the owner of Healing Creatures Animal Hospital. For more information, call 717-730-3755 or visit

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