I was skimming through a Saddle Up magazine and saw a small advertisement on one of the pages: “A Basic Course in Animal Homeopathy,” offered by Dr. Glen Dupree. I researched this a little further and found the course to be offered only thirty minutes from my house. I could take Saturday off from work and attend the weekend class. The price was reasonable, and I had an interest in homeopathy because I remembered being treated with a remedy for thyroid dysfunction when I was a little girl back in Germany. I signed up.
Wow! What an eye opener and what excellent timing. Never underestimate the timing of the Universe.
Only a week after I had attended this course in animal homeopathy my mare came down with her seasonal “summer itch”: an awful itchy condition that had plagued her now for two summers. She would rub her tail until it was bald on the base. She would break out in small scabs on her chest and neck. She would scratch her ears and continuously rub the inside of one leg with the other. She would look and act truly miserable, and it was starting again. My first instinct was to reach for the Benadryl and low doses of steroids, to hose her off with ice-cold water, and to lock her in her stall during the days and only let her out after dark. Instead, I applied what I had learned the week before.
Step 1 – Take a deep breath and relax. Homeopathy will not work as quickly as pharmaceuticals, but if I can find the correct remedy for my horse, it will cure this disease. Traditional medicine will provide immediate relief but will not cure the disease, and my horse will go through this year after year.
Step 2 – Do not mix medicines. Choose which medicine you want to use and stick with it. Meaning I had to decide if I was “all in” with homeopathy or not. If not, then there was no need to start, because other medicines or modalities, including herbs, acupuncture, or modern pharmaceuticals in conjunction with homeopathy would confuse the body and cure was unlikely.
Step 3 – Homeopathy is powerful and can aggravate the disease. This could get worse before it got better.
Step 4 – Homeopathy treats the entire patient, not the symptoms of the disease. I had to look at the whole horse: the mental, emotional, physical, functional, and pathological aspects of her. I had to do a very precise intake and note every little nuance. Everything was important: how she walked, how she slept, how she ate, how she drank, how she acted during different parts of the day, what was unusual, what was specific, what was normal for her. I had to note every bump, every discharge, and every scab. I had to be aware of locality: Where did something start? Where did it travel to? Did the clinical signs start on one side of the body and travel to another? Was there a trickle-down effect?
Step 5 – I had to use a large book called the Repertory to find the remedies that might match my horse’s symptoms. That process was long and tedious because of language evolution over the years.
Step 6 – Once I had a list of five to eight potential remedies, I had to study those remedies in another book called the Materia Medica and decide which was the best match for my horse. I read pages and pages of remedies until I found one that matched my horses mental, emotional, physical, and pathological state.
The remedy was one commonly used in cats, and it was also the remedy that best matched my own emotional and physical state. Very interesting!
I dosed her once a day for three days and then had to wait. I never realized how impatient I was and how conditioned I had become to expecting immediate results from a medicine. About five days later, just as I was about to give up on homeopathy, I saw an amazing change. The itching stopped, the tension resolved, the scabs started to disappear, and my horse seemed happier.
To this day, the summer itch has not returned.