Wednesday, August 29, 2007

International Association for Veterinary Homeopathy

The International Association for Veterinary Homeopathy, also known as the IAVH, was founded in Luxembourg in 1986 by a nucleus of veterinarians (or veterinary surgeons) with an interest in homeopathy. The initiative came from The Netherlands (Drs A Westerhuis (NL), Drs J van der Heul (NL) and Drs W Roelofsen (NL). The first President was Christopher Day MRCVS (UK).


Full membership is only open to qualified veterinarians, from anywhere in the world.


The Association was formed to advance the understanding, knowledge and practice of veterinary homeopathy (homoeopathy / homeopathy). It therefore aims to stimulate professional awareness of veterinary homeopathy and to encourage and provide for the training of veterinarians in the practice of homeopathy. It also encourages research. It is an open forum for the various differing approaches to the subject of veterinary homeopathy and its application, allowing for constructive dialogue between differing methodologies.


The Association works closely with and supports national veterinary homeopathic associations. The Association has several committees, each of which has special areas of responsibility. The Association has accredited courses in veterinary homeopathy in many countries, students becoming eligible for the CertIAVH examination. The IAVH has published curricula and standards for education and training in veterinary homeopathy. The association is active in politics affecting homeopathy, homeopathic prescribing and the availability of homeopathic medicines. This activity is currently focused on European Union developments, in partnership with the European Committee for Homeopathy. In addition, experienced members of the Association are working to develop a veterinary homeopathic repertory and a veterinary homeopathic materia medica.

Link for International Association for Veterinary Homeopathy

Edward Bach

Edward Bach (pronounced "Batch") (September 24, 1886 – November 27, 1936) developed Bach flower remedies, a form of alternative medicine inspired by the classical homeopathic traditions.


Bach grew up in Birmingham, studied medicine at the University College Hospital, London and obtained a Diploma of Public Health (DPH) at Cambridge.

Before turning to alternative therapies, he was a House Surgeon and a casualty medical officer at University College Hospital; he was in charge of 400 beds during World War I; he worked at the National Temperance Hospital and had a successful practice at Harley Street.

Bach nosodes

Later he worked at the London Homeopathic Hospital and he developed seven bacterial nosodes known as the seven Bach nosodes, which have received only limited recognition and their use has been mostly confined to British homeopathy practitioners.

These Bowel Nosodes were introduced by Bach and the British homeopaths, John Paterson (1890-1954) and Charles Edwin Wheeler (1868-1946) in the 1920s. Their use is based on the variable bowel bacterial flora associated with persons of different homeopathic constitutional types.

Bach flowers

In 1930, at the age of forty three, he decided to search for a new healing technique. He spent the spring and summer discovering and preparing new flower remedies - which include no part of the plant but simply the pattern of energy of the flower - and in the winter he treated patients free of charge.

He advertised his remedies in two daily newspapers, but the General Medical Council disapproved of his advertising. In 1934, he moved to Mount Vernon in Brightwell-cum-Sotwell, Oxfordshire.

In his treatise Heal Thyself he writes:

"Disease will never be cured or eradicated by present materialistic methods, for the simple reason that disease in its origin is not material . . . Disease is in essence the result of conflict between the Soul and Mind and will never be eradicated except by spiritual and mental effort."

Bach Centre

The Dr Edward Bach Centre, Mount Vernon, located in Brightwell-cum-Sotwell, Oxfordshire, UK, commonly known as the Bach Centre, or simply Mount Vernon, was the home and working place of Bach during the latter years of his life. Here he performed research into the 38 flower remedies that still bear his name.

The trustees and helpers at the Bach Centre continue to make and provide the mother tinctures for the Bach flower remedies, according to the specific instructions left by Dr. Bach.

The Bach Centre offers help to the public in the form of education, publications and referrals to practitioners. It is open to visitors and aims to maintain the original purity and simplicity of Dr. Bach's work. Their mission statement is Our work is steadfastly to adhere to the simplicity and purity of this method of healing.

Bach flower remedies

Bach flower remedies are dilutions of flower "essences" developed by Edward Bach. The remedies are used primarily for emotional and spiritual conditions, including but not limited to depression, anxiety, insomnia and stress.

The remedies contain an infinitesimal amount of flower material in a 50:50 solution of water and brandy. Because the remedies are extremely dilute they do not have a characteristic scent or taste of the plant. Vendors state that the remedies contain the "energetic signature" of the flower, and that this can be transmitted to the user.


Each remedy is used alone or in conjunction with other remedies, and each flower is believed by advocates to impart specific qualities to the remedy. Bach flower remedies are also used on household pets and domestic animals, and have been claimed to be effective in calming them and improving problem behaviours. Some people claim that they are also useful for the treatment of diseased plants. Remedies are usually taken orally.

Remedies may be prescribed by a naturopath, or an individual may choose the combination they feel best suits their situation. Some vendors recommend dowsing to select a remedy.

The most well know flower remedy is the Rescue Remedy combination, which contains an equal amount each of Rock rose, Impatiens, Clematis, Star of Bethlehem and Cherry Plum remedies. The product is aimed at treating stress, anxiety, and panic attacks, especially in emergencies.

Rescue Cream contains the same remedies in a paste form, to be applied externally to treat minor skin problems such as itches and burns.

Research on the effects of a particular remedy is done by case reporting with consensus review by other users. For example, one person will report that using a particular remedy seemed to help with 'X', then other users will then focus on that same condition either in treating themselves or patients, and will report findings. Results found in this manner are often skewed by a confirmation bias.


Edward Bach decided that dew collected from the flowers of plants contains some of the properties of the plant, and that it was more potent on flowers grown in the sun. As it was impractical to collect dew in quantity, he decided to pick flowers and steep them in a bowl of water under sunlight. If this is impractical due to lack of sunlight or other reasons the flowers may be boiled.

The result of this process is the "mother tincture", which is further diluted before sale or use.

Bach was very satisfied with the method, because it was of simplicity he had longed for, and involved a process of combination of the four elements:

The earth to nurture the plant, the air from which it feeds, the sun or fire to enable it to impart its power, and water to collect and be enriched with its beneficient magnetic healing.

Bach flower remedies are not dependent on the theory of successive dilutions, and are not based on the Law of Similars. The Bach remedies, unlike homeopathic remedies, are all derived from non-toxic substances, with the idea that a "positive energy" can redirect or neutralize "negative energy".

List of Bach flower remedies

The Dr. Edward Bach Centre, which is the Centre founded by Dr Bach to promote and preserve his work, presents this list of the thirty eight remedies discovered by Dr Bach and directed at a specific characteristic or emotional state.

Agrimony – mental torture behind a cheerful face
Aspen – fear of unknown things
Beech – intolerance
Centaury – inability to say 'no'
Cerato – lack of trust in one's own decisions
Cherry Plum – fear of the mind giving way
Chestnut Bud (made with horse chestnut buds) – failure to learn from mistakes
Chicory – selfish, possessive love
Clematis – dreaming of the future without working in the present
Crab Apple – cleansing remedy, also for self-hatred
Elm – overwhelmed by responsibility
Gentian – discouragement after a setback
Gorse – hopelessness and despair
Heather – self-centeredness and self-concern
Holly – hatred, envy and jealousy
Honeysuckle – living in the past
Hornbeam – procrastination, tiredness at the thought of doing something
Impatiens – impatience
Larch – lack of confidence and self-esteem
Mimulus – fear of known things
Mustard – deep gloom for no reason
Oak – the plodder who keeps going past the point of exhaustion
Olive – exhaustion following mental or physical effort
Pine – guilt
Red Chestnut (a type of horse chestnut) – over-concern for the welfare of loved ones
Rock Rose – terror and fright
Rock Water – self-denial, rigidity and self-repression
Scleranthus – inability to choose between alternatives
Star of Bethlehem – shock
Sweet Chestnut – Extreme mental anguish, when everything has been tried and there is no light left
Vervain – over-enthusiasm
Vine – dominance and inflexibility
Walnut – protection from change and unwanted influences
Water Violet – pride and aloofness
White Chestnut (made with horse chestnut blossoms) – unwanted thoughts and mental arguments
Wild Oat – uncertainty over one's direction in life
Wild Rose – drifting, resignation, apathy
Willow – self-pity and resentment