Sea to Sky Holistic Vet is a house and farm call only veterinary practice offering high quality personalized holistic veterinary care tailored to the unique needs of each animal.
Learn more about different holistic treatment options offered by Dr. Aja: Acupuncture, Laser Therapy, Massage, Chiropractic, Herbal Medicine, Nutrition/Food Therapy, Aromatherapy, Supplements/Nutraceuticals
Sea to Sky Holistic Vet is a specialized house and farm call only holistic practice so all surgeries (including dog and cat dentistry), radiographs, ultrasound, and emergency/urgent care is referred to other trusted veterinary clinics.
Acupuncture is part of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine which looks at the whole patient and tries to treat underlying issues rather than just focusing on symptoms. Acupuncture is a technique using very small needles to stimulate points on the body. This causes pain relief, decreases inflammation and normalizes blood flow and nerve function. Acupuncture can help in the treatment and prevention of many diseases including allergies, arthritis, kidney disease, gastrointestinal disease, lameness, cancer, and behavioral problems. It can also be a tool to optimize the health and performance of equine and canine athletes. Dr. Aja is a Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist with advanced training in Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine including acupuncture.
Sometimes called "Cold Laser" or "Low Level Laser Therapy" the scientific term is Photobiomodulation. Laser therapy uses near infrared light wavelengths (not visible to the human eye) which go into the tissue and change what the cells are doing. Within the cells it essentially "turns off" the pathways that are causing inflammation and pain and promotes healing and return to normal function. It's painless and doesn't even require direct contact to work so it's an effective option for animals that prefer minimal touching or don't enjoy acupuncture as we can stimulate acupuncture points with it as well.
The therapeutic benefits of massage have been known to cultures throughout history. It's beneficial for animals just as it is for people. Massage is helpful for reducing pain and inflammation as well as normalizing blood flow and nerve function. In addition to massage during the appointment Dr. Aja will teach you some simple but effective techniques that you can use to help your animal between appointments. Dr. Aja has advanced training in massage including Tui-Na a Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine technique which combines massage and acupressure to get many of the benefits of acupuncture without the use of needles.
Bodies are meant to move. There's actually over a hundred joints in the body, mostly in the spine, which allow normal movement. When joints aren't moving correctly then other areas of the body have to compensate and they start moving incorrectly because they're overworking, the muscles get tight and painful from overwork, the nerves get irritated by the abnormal movement and bloodflow is altered. All of these changes lead to inflammation, altered function of the body and pain. With chiropractic treatment a trained practitioner checks every joint in the body to make sure it's moving correctly. If it's not moving correctly an adjustment is done which allows the joint to then move normally again restoring normal blood flow and nerve function and reducing inflammation and pain. Dr. Aja is Certified in Veterinary Chiropractic by the International Veterinary Chiropractic Association.
People have been using herbal medicines for thousands of years across cultures. Herbs contain many active ingredients which have physical effects on the body and mind. Today we mainly use herbal medicines from Traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurvedic Medicine or from Western traditions of herbalism. Each of these types of herbal medicine use a different medical framework for diagnosing, preventing and treating disease with herbal medicine. Traditional Chinese Herbal medicine typically uses herbal formulas with 2-20 different herbs which all work synergistically in a balanced and holistic manner to treat the underlying disease. Ayurvedic Herbal medicine uses more single herbs than Traditional Chinese Medicine but some formulas with multiple herbs as well. Western herbal traditions typically use a single herb at a time. Dr. Aja has advanced training in herbal medicine and is able to prescribe Traditional Chinese, Ayurvedic or Western herbs based on the individual, unique needs of each patient.
Nutrition & Food Therapy
Nutrition is one of the most important things we can do to optimize health and to prevent and manage disease. In fact in Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine the power of food to help the body stay balanced and heal itself is recognized with Food Therapy being one of the 4 branches of treatment alongside acupuncture, herbal therapy and Tui-Na (Chinese massage and acupressure). Every animal has unique needs for nutrition based on their species, breed, age, history and lifestyle. We can develop a nutrition plan targeted to you pet's exact needs to optimize health and well-being to prevent and manage disease. Many conditions can be improved with just targeted nutrition and food therapy. Check out our Blog for lots more information on food and nutrition.
This technique uses essential oils and is similar in many ways to herbal medicine in that each oil contains many active ingredients which have physical and emotional effects and they act to balance the mind and body. They are usually very short acting but this means they act more quickly than herbal medicines and they are very effective for behavioral and emotional/mental issues. Essential oils are very powerful so they need to be used very carefully but with appropriate training they are very safe and effective.
Supplements & Nutracueticals
There are many conditions that can benefit from certain supplements. Unfortunately there are also many supplements available which are not helpful. Dr. Aja will help you understand what these supplements are actually doing and recommend those that would be beneficial based on the unique needs of your pet.
Annual wellness exams are recommended for all animals. A Wellness exam includes a physical examination, Traditional Chinese Medicine examination, chiropractic examination, orthopedic and neurological examinations, as well as an assessment of Body Condition Score, Muscle Condition Score and Pain Assessment. Since holistic veterinary care means looking at the whole picture Wellness exams also include discussions of behavior, nutrition/diet, exercise and environmental enrichment. We will work together to come up with a plan tailored to your animal's unique needs to optimize their health and wellness. These exams are an important opportunity to keep healthy animals healthy and identify potential problems early to help prevent them from becoming significant problems.
Performance Animal Care
Whether you have an equine athlete, a canine athlete, or even show dairy goats, Sea to Sky Holistic Vet can help your animals stay in top condition. We'll create a comprehensive, holistic, treatment plan to optimize health and well-being which will also optimize performance. This may include a combination of many holistic treatments like acupuncture, laser, massage, chiropractic, nutrition, herbal medicine and supplements tailored to the exact needs of your athlete.
Herd & Flock Health Care
For any herd or flock of farm animals (chickens, sheep, goats, llamas, alpacas) this service covers routine evaluation of the herd or flock including nutrition, housing, management, husbandry and disease treatment and prevention to optimize the health, well-being and productivity of all animals. It may also include routine health care procedures such as foot trims in sheep, goats, llamas, or alpacas. Herd health checks are an important tool in identifying potential problems early to prevent them from becoming significant problems and can help improve production, health and well-being of all your animals.
Is your cat walking a little funny? Is your horse slowing down? Is your dog hesitating a little before jumping? Many people think that this is "just old age" but age is not a disease. Decreased energy, decreased mobility, arthritis and "old age diseases" are all treatable conditions that we can manage with a combination of Western medicine and holistic treatment options. Animals age much faster than people. Cats and dogs have decreased mental and physical capabilities as early as 6-8 years old and by 10 years old about 75% of dogs and almost 100% of cats have developed arthritis. Many conditions common in older animals like arthritis, mobility issues, thyroid issues, kidney disease, and heart disease can be managed holistically with excellent results. Even for healthy older animals as they age they have different needs for exercise, nutrition, and healthcare than young animals. We can come up with a plan tailored to your pet's unique needs to help them age gracefully.
Palliative Care, Hospice and In-Home Euthanasia
For pets with chronic and terminal diseases Dr. Aja offers palliative and hospice care with a focus on pain management. We will discuss quality of life and options to give your pet the best possible quality of life. We'll also talk through your pet's disease process, what to expect, and how to plan for end of life decision making. Dr. Aja uses a combination of conventional Western medicine and Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine techniques (acupuncture, massage, food therapy, herbal medicine) plus chiropractic, laser therapy, and aromatherapy to help your pet have the best quality of life possible. When the time is right, Dr. Aja will come to your home or farm and perform euthanasia.