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Pet owners increasingly turn to alternative medicine for pet health

Thursday, August 10, 2006 by: NewsTarget
Tags: pet health, pet health insurance, health news

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(NewsTarget) Alternative and complementary medicine is gaining public acceptance and popularity among people, and now some Britons have decided that what is good for people is good for their pets, according to a Direct Line Pet Insurance study.

"Britain is a nation of dog lovers," said Chris Price, spokesperson for Direct Line Pet Insurance, which covers alternative therapies recommended by a qualified veterinarian. "So in some respects it is no surprise that they are willing to try different therapies and treatments to keep their pet in the best possible mental and physical health."

The study revealed that more than 750,000 pet owners (around 14 percent) had tried alternative or complementary treatments such as homeopathic nutrition, herbal remedies, massage, reflexology and acupuncture. Thirty percent of those had tried the treatments on the recommendation of their vet.

According to the study, dog lovers are not reluctant to drop money on their pet either -- they spent 29.6 million pounds ($56.4 million USD) over the last two years on the treatments. Forty-four percent reported that their dog was physically better after using the therapies, and 23 percent claimed that they cleared up their dogs' symptoms altogether.

The results have apparently pleased the majority of British dog owners, as 89 percent said they would use the treatments again in the future. Price said that medical insurance for pets was indispensable either way.

"There will always be cases where medical assistance will be required, whether complementary or traditional," he said.

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