Dr. Juliet Decasteker is an Integrative Veterinarian who practices acupuncture, chinese herbs and food therapy to treat animals. In this age of allopathy offering quicker results, Dr Juliet’s remedies are old concepts making a comeback.
“When you use allopathy, it’s not necessary that the animal feels better on the inside. This combined with processed food that is consumed can often lead to the animal being aggressive and anxious,” says Dr Juliet.
With supermarkets designating specific aisles to pet food, this only makes sense. Competition is more and so is the awareness and need for a pet in these distressed times. What Dr Juliet is trying to eradicate is a disease from its root, with the help of practices that date back to the medieval times. And often with allopathy and the use of powerful drugs the disease remains in the body, only eliminating the symptoms temporarily.
“At some point I felt frustrated with the fact that I didn’t always have the answer while treating an animal. Somewhere inside I always knew that the patient didn’t feel better. Sometimes despite giving the drug, I didn’t have a solution. And I felt that wasn’t right, there has to be a reason. It cannot go undiagnosed,” remarks Dr Juliet about her shift to natural medicine and the need for holistic treatment.
She further adds that using the word disease can also be misleading, especially because in Chinese medicine it’s about imbalances in the body. “The definition we learnt in school can be deficiencies in the body and not actually a disease, which often denotes a much more serious problem.”
To be able to identify an issue and come up with a solution is what a passionate person would do. Dr. Juliet’s love for animals began during her growing up years in Belgium. After working for years in Europe, she understood that she wanted to go a step beyond veterinary school lessons.
“As a woman, sometimes pet owners will believe you less just because of your gender. Other issues can be competitiveness because other doctors aren’t always willing to collaborate on a case. But after the client sees the results, then they start believing you,” says Dr Juliet.
She also talks about how while there is a section that would mistake her for being ineligible, yet there is a majority that just wants the well being of their pet. And gender is not a concern in those times.
Dr Juliet is a mother, homemaker, doctor all rolled in one. So her day is busy with her kids, husband, two dogs, and a clinic. “I usually try to be there for my kids before they go to school, wrap up work while they are there and if there’s an emergency my partner is with them. I don’t do crazy hours like most people do.”
Her book, Healthy Dog, Happy You, talks about preventive therapy and the usual grinding questions one has while keeping pets. “I wanted to spread the word about how a typical Indian owner can do some much on their own. There’s so much online information available now that many of them aren’t even true,” says Dr Juliet.
Donning so many hats has certainly been a woman’s job for centuries now. But to be a mother and a professional is not easy. Only a passionate person can handle both with finesse. Dr Juliet is all for speaking up and saying what you want to in the new world. “You can be a housewife and still bring in money.”
She talks about how women have always been regarded as witches in the west while in India they have actually been healers behind closed doors. “We need to stop despising the old herbs our mothers used to cook, to heal and to cure with!”
With the world going back to roots, Dr Juliet’s theory of preventive medicine and therapy is much needed in times of fancy treatment packages.