Saturday, March 17, 2007

Consider it a few more dollars in SHAM's kitty.

This morning, as I get settled at my computer and click on the TV to see what's happening in the world, Good Morning America is airing a special that seeks to answer that timeless question: "Does alternative medicine work for your pets?"

Does alternative medicine work for your pets?

I have a suggestion: How 'bout if we first try to find a few shreds of credible evidence that it works for people? If we can't prove that alt-med offers any tangible benefit to humans—who, after all, can actually understand what practitioners are saying and can make a conscious effort to apply the methodologies, however suspect those methodologies may be—then why in the world would we even consider paying good money to inflict this nonsense on Fido?

By the way, some insiders are calling this "howlistic" medicine. At least they've got a sense of humor about it.

Now chant after me: Meeeeeoooooooowwwwwwwwww....meeeowwwwwwwwwww....


Reverend Krull said...

Love the cat picture!

Cosmic Connie said...

Hey, Rev Krull, I like your blog template. :-) I also like that you're a "Joe vs. the Volcano" fan.

Steve, I think we need to be asking some serious questions about our non-human friends. Exploring whether alt-med works for them is one question. Another is, "Do non-human animals use the Law Of Attraction, as taught in 'The Secret?' This has been one of the topics of discussion on the intellectual think-tank forum presided over by Marcy From Maui.

Here's the link. (You'll have to delete the line breaks, but don't delete any of the periods. It works best if you copy and paste one line at a time till you get the entire link.)


By the way, the "Abraham" mentioned in the discussion refers to the group of disembodied entities "channeled" by Esther Hicks, who was one of Rhonda Byrne's original inspirations for "The Secret." Hicks is out of the franchise now, though, and so, presumably, is Abraham. But they still have their loyal followers.

Now, on a more serious note... I understand that acupuncture has been used on racehorses and other animals with some (apparent) success. Closer to home, since Ron and I have been giving our arthritic dog Rex glucosamine/chondroiton tablets we've seen a marked improvement in his mobility.

Not that gluco/chon is "alternative" in the sense that, say, the more "out-there" forms of energy healing are, but many traditional M.D.s are just as much against nutritional supplements as they are against really woo-woo stuff.

In fact, the Rev and I have heard a traditional M.D. scoff at the use of this supplement in humans. "It's just the placebo effect," he said (despite the research that has shown gluco/chon can be helpful to humans with osteoarthritis).

Well, I don't see how it could be "placebo" in a dog, unless the dog has cognitive abilities we're not aware of. Of course, a hardcore traditionalist would say, "Maybe it was just coincidence; maybe it isn't arthritis; maybe it was just an injury; the dog would probably have gotten better on his own, etc."

Even so, I think that the alt-med methods that have shown some promise in humans could also work on animals. But I draw the line at saying animals use LOA, LOL.

acd said...

It is interesting that many traditional medicinal techniques are tested on animals first, then used in humans, but then people are willing to be the guinea pigs for alternative medicine, and now they want to try it in animals. How can they even expect that to work, when many alternative methods rely on the mind and the patient's ability to maintain a certain way of thinking in order to heal themselves? An animal would not be able to acquire the appropriate attitude about its illness in order to make such treatments effective.

For methods that focus more on directly treating the body, it would be logical to test these on animals first. That way, the placebo effect will not be an issue, and we can more accurately ascertain the effectiveness of certain treatments.