You’ve probably heard the saying “just do what comes naturally.” Of all the things that should come naturally to us, caring for animals should be among the top ten. Humans have been keeping pets for thousands of years, and “back in the day,” people undoubtedly applied the same instinct-driven care to their pets as they applied to themselves. That is, pet owners of ages past observed the habits and lifestyles of their pets’ wild counterparts and tried to mimic that in caring for their domesticated creatures. In an age of pill-popping and fast food, instinctive care, both for ourselves and our pets, seems to have fallen grievously by the wayside. Discover the benefits of a back-to-nature approach to caring for your pet with the following information on natural pet care.
Natural pet care is all about living in harmony with and supporting the natural functions of your pet’s physical and emotional workings. Rather than forcing modern technologies and conveniences onto an animal that is essentially only one or two steps away from living in the wild, those who practice natural pet care attempt to replicate the diet, interaction, environment, and health care your animal would seek out instinctively. This is not to say that you shouldn’t take your pet to the veterinarian or that you should force your dog or cat to hunt for their own food! It’s simply saying that you should take every opportunity to allow your pet’s natural history to guide your pet care decisions.
For instance, when it comes to your pet’s diet, are you feeding them what is the most convenient food, or are you taking their natural diet into consideration? In the wild, a dog would not be eating factory-made kibble day in and day out. Dogs are omnivores by nature, and your dog would be enjoying a variety of meats and vegetables. You can replicate this by replacing your dog’s kibble diet with meats, vegetables, and natural supplements like herbs and vitamins. For fish, a natural diet might consist of live brine shrimp, blood worms, and vegetables such as zucchini. A pet nutritionist will be able to help you design an appropriate natural diet for your pet, no matter what kind of animal you have.
When socializing with your pet, try to treat them as another same-species animal might. For horses, you can tell a horse you’re its friend by gently blowing into its nostrils by way of greeting. If the horse whuffles back, you know you’ve just been accepted into its “herd.” Before you decide to pick up your frog and cuddle it, consider the fact that other frogs probably don’t cuddle one another in nature. In fact, the only time a frog might be picked up in the wild is if it’s about to be eaten! When it comes to behavior issues, never ever strike a pet. Animals in the wild do not typically slap one another around. Try to reprimand your pet as its mother or dominant pack member might reprimand it-with a sharp growl, a pinch to the scruff of the neck, or by simply appearing disgusted with the action and walking away. An animal behaviorist will be able to tell you more about natural discipline. There are also many excellent books on the subject.
As natural human health care becomes increasingly popular, so does natural pet health care. More and more owners are seeking alternative medical routes to healing and preventing illness and injury in their best friends by relying on acupuncture, massage, homeopathic therapy, and herbal medicine. Natural pet health care clinics are springing up all over, ranging from veterinarians who supplement “normal” veterinary practice with natural care options to vets who rely almost entirely on natural healing methods, outside of instances such as surgery.
It seems odd that something natural should require any sort of great effort on our parts, but it is for that very reason that natural pet care isn’t for everyone. In this day and age, doing anything the natural way requires discipline and commitment to the cause. Start small-use a natural flea repellent in place of your normal go-to chemical treatment. Prepare a few meals a week for your pet rather than relying on pre-packaged food. Offer your arthritic dog a comforting massage instead of relying on daily pain killers. After a while, natural pet care may very well just live up to its name and come to you naturally!