Alternative and Integrative Medicine for Pets
by Charles Lewis
Shawn Messonnier received a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Texas A&M in 1987, and says that over the years as a veterinarian, he saw too many pets that he couldn’t help with conventional medications. Messonnier says he wanted to find a better, safer, more economical way, so in 1991, he opened Paws & Claws Holistic Animal Hospital, which utilizes alternative and integrative medicine to help to help pets, including dogs, cats, birds, reptiles and small mammals.
He explains, “Integrative medicine involves minimal use of conventional medications unless absolutely necessary, and then typically tiny doses are used for short periods of time. We also employ Chinese and Western herbal medicine, nutritional supplementation, homeopathy, homotoxicology, autosanguis detoxification therapy, acupuncture, cold laser and dietary therapy. We are the only hospital in North Texas to employ inexpensive blood testing for early diagnosis of cancer and inflammatory diseases and in-hospital blood vaccine titer testing; a natural alternative to vaccines.”
Messonnier says, “All of our therapies are proprietary and have been developed over many years of research. All are science-based. Our supplements are manufactured in the U.S. and tested for toxicity, palatability, contamination and correct dosage and ingredients. We have developed many unique protocols for wellness and disease treatment unavailable anywhere else.”
Pet parents that want to say no to unnecessary vaccines, chemicals, and drugs and yes to natural health and wellness are their primary clients, says Messonnier. “Based upon our experience, our patients tend to live two-to-five years longer than average and our cancer patients typically live six to 12 months longer than average. Our typical client exercises, uses organic food and supplements on her family and often doesn’t vaccinate her children, but we also see many people from a wide socio-economic circle who simply want their pets to stay healthy and reduce veterinary visits for illness. Most clients would be surprised that we often help pets diagnosed with ‘incurable’ diseases for whom euthanasia is recommended. Most of these sick pets can be helped and often cured or saved with the proper integrative therapies.”
Messonnier specializes in naturopathic disease prevention and treatment. “While we treat all sizes and species of pets including birds, reptiles and small mammals that have numerous medical conditions, we are best known for our treatment of pets with skin problems and cancer,” he notes. “We are also known for our safe, holistic anesthetic approach, so that all pets, even elderly pets with medical issues, can be safely sedated/anesthetized for any procedure. Our patients wake up immediately and are sent home fully awake shortly after a procedure.”
In addition to running his local pet hospital, Messonnier is also an award-winning radio talk show host, author, and formulator of a line of natural pet products. His show Dr. Shawn, The Natural Vet, can be heard on Martha Stewart Radio, and his natural line of pet products, Dr. Shawn Naturals and books are available at PetCareNaturally.com.
Natural Awakenings readers receive 10 percent off their first visit to Paws & Claws Holistic Animal Hospital, located at 2145 W. Park, in Plano. For appointments, call 972-867- 8800 or visit PawsAndClawsAnimalHospital.com.