Dell is a 15 year old Springer Spaniel, rehomed when she was discovered living confined in a shed at 3 years old. She has enjoyed an active outdoor life, until she slowed down in the last couple of years with age-related mobility problems. She also has limited eye sight from cataracts, and deafness. She has a titanium support in front leg after a break from a fall several years ago. She has not been spayed, and fed on dry mixer and tinned dog food.
During the spring of 2015 Dell's health was in decline. (at age 14yrs.) She found it hard to walk beyond a short walk (for her), taking longer to recover, was slow to stand, and to lie down. However her mobility started to steadily improve, after taking 'JointAid for dogs’. She was again able to get on and off the sofa, and to walk further with a bit more ease. She continued to have JointAid added to her dinner.
However by summer 2015 Dell's health was failing, and she was again finding it hard to walk. She was spending more time in her bed, and having difficulty when she stood up, or lay down. She had less energy, was withdrawn, appeared depressed, and had poor appetite. She gave the appearance of being in pain. It was thought she probably didn’t have long to live, and her owner was discussing the difficulties of weighing up the quality of her life, and in deciding when to have her put down.
I offered several of your remedies over the summer for pain and poor mobility, (although I didn’t have a full range). Dell didn’t want anything I had to offer, other than an initial brief interest in angelica root. She got up and walked away each time she was offered a remedy, even though this was difficult for her, and the remedy was quickly removed. In September, I ordered my AZ kit. Dell was keen to select Bergamot, it was the first essential oil that she really engaged with. She spent time lying peacefully next to the bottle, inhaling deeply, and taking time to process it.
At each visit she choose to inhale bergamot and occasionally ate a tablespoon or two of coconut oil. Dell had no interest in other remedies, until I offered her Spirulina. She immediately wanted this, demanding it straight from the packet; she took about a cup full dry, before she even paused. I left Spirulina with her owner which Dell continued to take.
In the autumn, Dell’s mammary growth began to shrink. It was the size of an orange. (Her previous Springer Spaniel had a very similar growth removed, when she was an old dog but the wound failed to heal and it became infected, causing her a lot of difficulty and pain.) It had therefore been decided to not have this growth operated on, given Dell’s age. I melted coconut oil and added Bergamot EO, for her to have rubbed on her belly and the growth if she wanted it, which was offered, and accepted. I left this with her guardian to use in between my visits.
Over the winter months Dell continued to choose Bergamot and Spirulina, and her growth was steadily getting smaller: Timings are approximate; by December it was around the size of a satsuma, January it was more like a kiwi, by February a plum, and by the spring it was the size of an acorn. At this point Dell no longer wanted any coconut oil, Bergamot or Spirulina.
With each month she appeared to become a year younger, her aging was reversing, and her vitality returning. By late spring 2016 she was back to insisting on 3 long (over an hour) walks a day, demanding to be taken out, pushing in front to get out of the door first, and trotting off ahead at a good pace, tail wagging. Interestingly often choosing a route through the woods where she returned to regular eating of ground elder from one particular place by a stream, which she had always done.
In June 2016 Dell came into season. She continues to be in good health, and enjoys her walks, and has a healthy appetite. She is in good spirits, although she finds hot weather more of a challenge, (which she has done for the last few summers,) preferring cold and wet weather.
By Brighid Morrigan
Reader of Help Your Dog Heal Itself / attendee at Canine Gateway workshop