Holistic Treatments for our Aging Animal Friends by Dr Elaine Cebuliak part 2

Last month I introduced the topic of holistic treatments for your senior animal friends, this month I go more into the actual treatment options:

  • Accell therapy  We are the proud owners of a mat unit that vibrates and  supports the increase in blood flow to the muscles, bones and spine of the whole being. https://vimeo.com/130807805  This can be added to acupuncture treatments or rehab programs for a minimal add on cost. Six sessions are recommended of between 7-15 minutes each.
  • Hydrotherapy is a great option especially in dogs who have muscle atrophy. Unfortunately, it cannot be done with cats. Hydrotherapy is done in a small swimming pool and involves massage and physical therapy in the water. I have seen excellent results with hydrotherapy especially combined with acupuncture. Hydrotherapy helps to rebuild muscles, increase range of motion and work out sore and sensitive areas of the body without the impact on the body of exercise on land. Taking your dog to shallow ocean shores is an excellent way to build up their quad strength and range of motion. 
  • Herbs I have worked with Chinese herbs with many arthritic dogs and some cats. The combination of acupuncture and herbs usually helps with pain and movement and helps animals maintain health between treatments. There are some animals who don’t do well on Chinese herbs; occasionally some diarrhoea from the liquorice coating may occur, so it is important to work with us as your herbal practitioners, to find the right combination to help your particular animals. The vast majority do quite well on a combination of Du huo hi sheng wan and corydalis plus some bai zi ren. 
  • Essential oils and trigger point work: We have found essential oils with herbs very useful, and we make up a “raindrop kit” including copaiba and helichrysum: all wonderful oils to be applied regularly.  Other herbs and food/nutritionproducts we may add include:     
  • PEA- palmitoylethanolamide helps with pain and inflammation
  • Boswelia (Frankincense) for inflammation involved with arthritic pain.
  • Devils claw for pain and arthritis.
  • Celery for fluid retention around joints
  • Ginger for relief from muscular aches and pain and increases circulation
  • Cat’s claw
  • Turmeric
  • St. John’s wort
  • Willow bark may be useful for dogs in pain. (Be careful of dose and give with food- This is where aspirin comes from).

The Omega 3 Fatty Acids in fish and cod liver oil actually helps decrease arthritic inflammation in dogs.  Adding a little fish oil to the diet can help many animals. Hemp and Flax oil also are good sources of omega 3, although animal omega origin is better for cats.

These supplements help to decrease inflammation and rebuild damaged cartilage. They are often sold in combination. The nice thing about these supplements is that they have few side effects and are very safe. Some animals have a wonderful response to them and some have almost no response. It usually takes a month to six weeks to see if your animal will have a positive response.

GAG Adequan/Zydaxx/Cartrophen/Synovan injections  also can be given to increase the joint fluid and lubricate the joints.  It’s also a lot easier to give to cats who are hard to medicate daily. After the initial series of injections (one injection every 5-7 days, dose dependent on body weight)  it usually only needs to be given once a month, and in many cases only 3 monthly or at the onset of winter.

  • Vitamin C for its anti-inflammatory effect. Also helps with pain
  • Spirulina
  • Wheat and barley grass
  • Kelp


  • We use a type of Chiro adjustment called VOM. (Veterinary Orthopaedic Manipulation) and a Bowen type of adjustment. 


  • Massage can help to loosen tight muscles and increase blood circulation. It also can help with pain. Acupressure works with the acupuncture points and helps decrease pain and relax muscles.
  • Reiki/Bowen/Polarity/Craniosacral and other energy therapies help stimulate the body to heal and can decrease pain and improve quality of life.
  • Quantum physics/distance healing and the use of electrical biofield instruments.
  • Stem cell is a new breakthrough technology that uses canine stem cells, to provide extended relief from pain in everyday activities. The stem cells are extracted from the excess fat that is removed in a routine desex of the Guide Dogs, so it is a safe, sterile and humane way of extracting such important cells. The stem cells stimulate the natural regeneration system in the damaged joints. The operation is an in-house procedure, where your dog can be home in time for supper.

Wishing you and your pet all the best and looking forward to working with you further in 2022. Happy festive season from the team at Animal Wellness!


Dr Elaine Cebuliak

Dr Elaine is a highly experienced holistic vet and pioneer of Animal Wellness in Brisbane. She also assists with many charitable projects in Australia and in Bali.

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