Holistic (or Integrative) Veterinary Medicine is the examination and diagnosis of an animal, considering all aspects of the animal's life and employing all of the practitioner's senses, as well as the combination of conventional and alternative (or complementary) modalities of treatment. When a holistic veterinarian sees a pet, besides giving it a comprehensive physical examination, he/she wants to find out all about its behaviors, distant medical and dietary history, and its environment including diet, emotional stresses, and other factors.
Holistic medicine, by its very nature, is humane to the core. The wholeness of its scope will set up a lifestyle for the animal that is most appropriate. The techniques used in holistic medicine are gentle, minimally invasive, and incorporate patient well-being and stress reduction. Holistic thinking is centered on love, empathy and respect.
This mixture of healing arts and skills is as natural as life itself. At the core of this issue lies the very essence of the word "(w)holistic". It means taking in the whole picture of the patient—the environment, the disease pattern, the relationship of pet with owner—and developing a treatment protocol using a wide range of therapies for healing the patient.