==> Sickness and body systems need to be seen together: Understanding sickness is a prerequisite for treatment!
12 Body systems in dogs and people
First note: Over the years this very Periodical has become so advanced that it may well "stretch" readers who haven't "grown" with the medical lingo through prior Periodicals, because I now frequently link to this Periodical even in books and articles that are rather for "beginners" at MYGERMANSHEPHERD.ORG. If you reached it this way, don't feel "stretched", just re-read this as often as you need to fully understand it: It is worth every minute you invest. It saves lives, it saves health, and it saves you tons of money too!
In the prior MYGERMANSHEPHERD PERIODICAL Stress-free vet visits we learned that stress impairs all 12 body systems:
...and that body systems is a topic so helpful to understand in terms of your dog's health and your own health that I was willing to work on an extra Periodical on this very topic for you. This is it. A Periodical that is decades ahead of mainstream medicine.
In fact, this Periodical makes the interactions between the various body systems so evident and the understanding of medicine so easy (hopefully) that by the end of this Periodical you may be wondering: "Why do the average conventional western physicians still not understand what eastern physicians built their medical model around, over 3000 years ago?" - Namely:
Note that there is a HUGE difference between having read this just now, and consciously thinking about it and changing your habit as medical consumer by the time you reach the comment box at the end of this Periodical.
Once you have truly taken in the information from
- How to find the right veterinarian (the Periodical before last)
- Stress-free vet visits (prior Periodical) and
- How Sickness Interacts with Body Systems (this Periodical)
Or shorter, we can say, once you understand the Foundation of Health and you agree with the Purpose of Treatment, you will insist to pay for CURE, instead that they make you pay for ever more rounds of palliation or suppression of some symptoms!
Find out more: Click to save vet cost, training cost, and your nerves!
So, the next time you have an appointment with your MD or with your dog's veterinarian, and they want you to pay for corticosteroids or other anti-inflammatories or for antibiotics, do yourself (and your bank account!) a favor and remember this very Periodical (or at least The Author's Personal Plea for Good in every of my books). Because:
Steroids and NSAIDs, painkillers and antidepressants etc, all those lab medication are only even meant to palliate or suppress the symptoms of your sickness, or your dog's sickness. They are really just a placebo. They have not been developed and so they are not prescribed to cure you or your dog! They are prescribed by allopathic physicians: physicians who believe that "when the symptoms are gone, so is the health issue". Physicians who consider you healthy when you do not show symptoms. For them: Disease = symptoms! Disorder = symptoms! Defect = symptoms!
But hey! They don't differentiate those three anyway: Allopathic physicians speak of disease when in fact you may be having a disorder or a defect. And so their treatment attempts are just as diffuse. But who cares? You have been paying them anyway.
Find out more: Click to save vet cost, training cost, and your nerves!
In this MYGERMANSHEPHERD PERIODICAL:
- Defect, Disorder, Disease, Syndrome, Symptom, Trigger, Cause, Allergy, Infection, Inflammation - Medicine made clear here!
- Brief description of each Body system and how they interact
Sickness? What sickness?
In order to understand your dog's health, and your own health, we must first agree on the same language. This is all the more important as in common parlance not only laymen but also most physicians use different terms interchangeably, although obviously it is helpful to reserve each term for a particular bodily condition. Like you don't say "I go to work by plane" when actually you go by car. Depending on what you have, people treat you very different. Both in terms of transport and in terms of health.
Think about it: For mutual understanding, it is necessary that when I say "GreedyPup have a super bowl" you understand
not this .
And when veterinarians assure you "vaccinations cannot cause diseases" it is necessary that you understand "but vaccinations can cause tons of disorders and defects"!
Because that's the other part of the truth that those veterinarians "forget" to mention (for income reasons), and government agencies "forget" to mention that too (for the reason of herd immunity).
They all get away with that, because most people don't recognize the differences between disease, defect, and disorder, nor between symptom, trigger, and cause, nor between allergy, infection, and inflammation, etc. And this is why we have so much over-vaccination and steroid prescriptions, and consequently so many costly immune system disorders like Allergies, Arthritis, Diabetes, Cancer etc, both in people and in dogs!
What are you really dealing with?
Other terms like sickness, illness, ailment, condition, health issue, health problem etc, can then be left to be used as interchangeable surrogate as long as we don't know or don't care(??) what we are dealing with: defect, or disorder, or disease.
1 Note that a symptom generally can only suggest but not identify a specific ailment, as most symptoms can be the sign of any of a large number of ailments. That's why generally a set of symptoms is needed to describe a specific ailment.
Also be aware that symptoms initially show only in one body system, and interestingly the cause of the defect, disorder, or disease typically is to be found in a different body system and already affects all body systems!
2 Note that in most contexts, people don't differentiate trigger and cause, they only differentiate symptom and cause. However, most ailments have many triggers that are not the cause! The critical determinant is:
- Does this circumstance have the same effect on every organism (dog or person), then we consider this circumstance the cause.
- Or does this circumstance have the observed effect only on some organisms (dog or person), then we consider this circumstance a trigger,
- and to identify the cause we need to answer: Which other circumstance does every organism with this ailment share?
- Is it another defect, disorder, or pathogen, or a mutation, or earlier injury, radiation, or vaccination, or a chemical substance (in medication, "food", household, or environment)?
Note that an allergen, prion, social influence, and stress can only be a trigger because they don't affect everybody the same way.
3 Be aware that most of the time the cause is most difficult to determine. Often because there is a considerable time-lag between cause and symptoms (and their diagnosis), and because the medical approach of ordinary allopathic physicians is to suppress or palliate the symptoms which can make it impossible for a more completely educated ("holistic") physician to identify the cause retrospectively.
Note that (another) defect, disorder, or pathogen, or a mutation, injury, radiation, vaccination, or chemical substance (in medication, "food", household, or environment) can be cause or trigger, and they are the cause only if they have the same effect on every organism (person or dog):
- For example an inherited homozygous SOD1 A mutation causes Degenerative Myelopathy in every patient.
- An injury to the ear drum from close gun shots causes a hearing defect in every patient.
- Only a certain amount and type of radiation causes immune system disorders in every patient, and so in all other cases radiation is a trigger of the defect or disorder in question.
- Likewise with vaccination: Most times vaccination triggers immune system disorders and other disorders, but a particularly foolish vaccination protocol might cause say anaphylactic shock in every patient (the six key mistakes made with vaccinations: too early, too frequent, vaccine combination, inadequate chemical adjuvants, vaccination while sick!, or vaccination while under the influence of immunosuppressants!).
- The same with chemical substances (in medication, "food", household, or environment): Most times they will trigger a disorder or defect in some patients. But certain chemical substances, even in small amounts (and many in large enough amounts), would cause the observed ailment in every patient.
Now here's an example that shows the difference between symptom, trigger, and cause where all three differ: Say, your dog has painful Diarrhea each time you feed something with beef, but not when you feed anything else. Then Diarrhea is the digestive system disorder, watery or even bloody feces and noticeable abdominal pain of the dog are two of its symptoms, a beef allergy (likely to one of its amino acids/proteins) is the trigger, and earlier key mistakes made with vaccinations or treatment with antibiotics or steroids or NSAIDs is the likely cause: The links explain how all of these cause immune system disorders, and an allergy is exactly that!
And here's an example where trigger and cause arguably are the same (this is primarily with a defect): Say, your dog bleeds incessantly after a lesion or surgery. Then von Willebrand Defect (vWD) is the defect (indeed a defect, not a disease!), the incessant bleeding is one of its symptoms, and a mutation is the cause (one that arguably does not require a trigger, although some physicians argue that vWD does require a trigger that is different from the cause, most suggest the trigger is an acquired immune system disorder following vaccination).
4 Examples of syndromes: Cushing's Syndrome (a disorder), Down Syndrome (a defect), Horner's Syndrome (a disorder). Anecdotal evidence that Horner's Syndrome "runs in families" and is an inherited defect appears to be based on a frequent misinterpretation: Is the defect inherited, or rather the behavior copied that causes the disorder? More detail under Inherited or Acquired?
5 A defect is caused by a mutation, a pathogen, injury, radiation, vaccination, or a chemical substance (in medication, "food", household, or environment), and caused or triggered by a pathogen, prion, chemical substance (in medication, "food", household, or environment), or poor diet (nutritional deficiency).
Examples of what actually are defects: von Willebrand Defect (being commonly called "von Willebrand disease blood disorder", note this total mess in common parlance), Degenerative Myelopathy (being commonly called "Degenerative Myelopathy disease", which is wrong), Hearing defect, Down Syndrome.
- Most DNA changes are acquired during lifetime and not heritable, ie a variance not a mutation as per above definitions.
- Over the millions of years evolution has developed a significant arsenal of safeguards that work to:
- prevent that an existing mutation is passed on to offspring
- deactivate defective genes that nonetheless made it to be passed on to offspring
- activate other genes that compensate for some or all of the effect caused by defective genes that could not be deactivated.
- This is why even an inherited gene abnormality (mutation) results in an inherited defect in only some individuals.
- To be truly inherited, the defect must be caused by a mutation in the genetic code that results in the particular defect in every organism with that mutation (dog or person).
- Else the observed mutation is just a trigger, and then every ailment (defect, disorder, and disease!) would have to be considered an inherited defect because the genetic code (with any and all its mutations) is a trigger for everything, including that we breathe!
More on this topic under Inherited or Acquired.
6 A disorder in form of a physiological dysfunction can be caused or triggered by radiation, vaccination, a pathogen, a chemical substance (in medication, "food", household, or environment), or poor diet (nutritional deficiency). A disorder in form of a psychological disturbance can be triggered by stress or social influence (example: Eating Disorder and other behavioral disorders) or caused or triggered by a pathogen, a chemical substance (in medication, "food", household, or environment), or poor diet (nutritional deficiency).
Be aware that a disorder can be caused or triggered by both a disease or a defect. Likewise, both a disease and a defect can be caused or triggered by a disorder. While a disease is caused or triggered and maintained by an acquired pathogen, a disorder and a defect is not maintained by an acquired pathogen even if it was caused or triggered by such.
Also note that an inherited over/under-production or over/under-utilization of a bodily substance is a defect, disorders can only be acquired. Makes complete sense: Once acquired, they bring the body "out of order" - if the body was already "out of order" at birth, then obviously the body had a defect already at birth, it never was "in order"!
7 Keep in mind that only bacterial, fungal, viral, protozoal, or parasitic infections can constitute a disease, and diseases can only be acquired! Also be aware that the cause of a disease is not necessarily the identified bacterium, fungus, virus, protozoa, or parasite: If it does not have the same effect on every organism (person or dog), it only is a trigger, while the cause is a different circumstance, likely an immune system disorder resulting from a chemical substance (in medication, "food", household, or environment), from poor diet (nutritional deficiency), or from vaccination.
8 Note that an allergy never is a "disease", it is a disorder, triggered by an allergen. An allergen is a non-pathogenic substance, meaning it does not trigger an infection, only an inflammation.
Be aware that an allergen can only trigger a disorder, because an allergen does not have the same effect on every organism (person or dog). In fact, characteristic of an allergen is that it affects only some organisms, while most not at all.
Allergens are substances without nucleic acid genome (non-living substances), while pathogens do have a genetic code (they are living organisms): bacteria, fungi, viruses, protozoa, and parasites. Keep in mind that allergens trigger disorders, pathogens trigger diseases.
According to this clear differentiation, prions actually trigger a defect, not a disease:
- Prions are malformed proteins, without nucleic acid genome, they are not living organisms, and so prions are not pathogens.
- Prions are not allergens either, they don't trigger a disorder: As far as is known today, there is no over/under-production or over/under-utilization of a bodily substance associated with prions.
- But prions clearly are an acquired impairment of an organ, body structure, or body function, and so prions trigger a defect.
9 Infection: Pathogenic occupation of an organism can be either infiltration with new pathogens or subjugation by existing pathogens.
10 Note that an inflammation signals the start of healing. Where an infection (disease) results in an inflammation, the pathogen has managed to get past the body's defense system, and so the inflammation is a necessity for the chance of healing because it is the inflammation that informs the defense army to reassemble right there. Likewise, where a physiological dysfunction (disorder) or other impairment (defect) results in an inflammation, the defense system considers the disorder or defect to be past the chance of successful autoregulation by the body systems, and so again the inflammation is required for a chance of healing.
When you suppress or palliate the inflammation with anti-inflammatory drugs you prevent healing, because no amount of drugs or other treatment can replace any body system nor emulate the intricate interactions between all body systems. All 12 body systems are essential for a fully functional healthy human or canine organism.
Be aware that not every inflammation involves pain, not even where the inflammation is chronic. This is because an individual's susceptibility to feel pain depends on far more circumstances than the presence and extent of an inflammation. Generally speaking, acute inflammation triggers discomfort through itching or other hypersensitivity, while an infection more often triggers pain.
11 All body systems play a role in the defense system. The immune system controls the immunological defense, and the other body systems help with anatomical defense and mechanical defense mechanisms, and some body systems also help with immunological defense, in particular the digestive system, lymphatic system, and cardiovascular system.
12 Note that symptoms can be chronic because symptoms may show only intermittently:
- subject to internal or more often external triggers
- subject to how far the defense system got with the healing process
- and subject to the all too common suppression or palliation of symptoms with medication or other treatment by allopathic physicians.
Conversely, it doesn't make sense to speak of a "chronic defect", "chronic disease", or "chronic disorder":
- By definition a disease exists exactly for as long as there is a pathogenic change in bodily tissue (and thereafter it may well have caused or triggered a disorder or defect).
- Likewise a defect exists exactly for as long as there is an impairment of an organ, body structure, or body function other than a disorder (and again, thereafter it may well have caused or triggered a disorder or disease).
- Also a disorder exists exactly for as long as there is a physiological dysfunction ... or a psychological disturbance (and thereafter it may well have caused or triggered a defect or disease).
Most importantly, the disease, defect, or disorder exists until cured (where possible), while some of its symptoms may show only intermittently, for the three reasons mentioned above. When the same symptoms reappear, at the same location or somewhere else, we rightfully speak of chronic symptoms. Yet the disease, defect, or disorder was always there, and continues to be until cured (where possible).
Also note that chronic inflammation and chronic pain is a common symptom of a progressive disorder, progressive disease, or progressive defect. Indeed, chronic inflammation commonly triggers further disorders - which to allopathic physicians often seem unrelated, but are in fact very much related to the original ailment! Compare these ramifications of chronic inflammation to the ramifications of acute inflammation above.
Further, be aware that chronic infection requires an underlying disorder or defect that facilitates repeated infection, and so disease cure requires that you cure the underlying disorder or defect first: In case of an underlying disorder it will be some form of immune system disorder, in case of an underlying defect it will be an integumentary system defect, respiratory system defect, or digestive system defect.
13 Be aware that an inherited defect requires an inherited DNA change, ie a mutation existing in the genetic code. This is important to keep in mind because radiation, some chemical substances (in medication, "food", household, or environment), and some pathogens are known to cause an acquired variance in the genetic code that is non-heritable. This is an acquired defect.
Inherited or Acquired?
This is another essential clarification we need to address here, because too many people (incl. some physicians) argue that a certain ailment is hereditary and so not preventable after birth, and because so many MDs and vets prescribe treatments that make no sense from the outset.
Let's address here the five key misconceptions whether a certain ailment is inherited or acquired:
First of all, only a defect can be inherited, disorders and diseases can only be acquired. That's why all the above is fundamental, it must be understood in order to appreciate this otherwise inconceivable statement:
If unclear why, just re-read our medical definitions. Admittedly, nothing like this is easy the first time we hear of it, even when we are entirely open-minded. Remembering your first car driving lesson? Phew!
When a newborn baby or puppy carries a defect, this by itself does not mean that the defect is inherited. Many defects (and disorders and diseases too) are acquired prenatal in the uterus or through the umbilical cord.
When it was found that a certain ailment "runs in families", this by itself does not mean that the ailment is an inherited defect, not even that it is a defect at all. Great examples, and all relevant for both people and dogs: Arthritis, Diabetes, Obesity, Cancer. Truly GREAT EXAMPLES! Because:
- all of these "were found to run in families"
- yet all of these are not inherited
- and all of these are not even a defect at all.
Unless the cause of an ailment is a mutation existing in the genetic code (known or yet unknown), the discovery "it runs in families" may mean that the family's behavior is adopted, rather than a defect inherited.
Alternatively it may mean that the affected descendants are affected by the same (or another) pathogen or chemical substance (in medication, "food", household, or environment) that causes the observed genetic variance and/or the diagnosed acquired disorder, defect, or even disease.
If an ailment other than a disease shows only later in life, and outside the biological transitions, it almost certainly is not an inherited defect, but a disorder or an acquired defect (in this order). Inherited defects exist before birth, and so they either show right from birth or they start to show with biological transitions.
Biological transitions are the obvious puberty, pregnancy, and menopause, as well as less obvious transitions like teething, end of hypertrophy (increase in cell size), end of hyperplasia (increase in rate of cell division), atrophy (wasting away of an organ or other tissue structure), and others.
The increased incidence of a certain ailment in some breeds (like say the German Shepherd Dog) by itself does not suggest a genetic predisposition (which would make it an inherited defect, nothing else). A genetic predisposition requires a mutation existing in the genetic code (known or yet unknown).
- Inbreeding: Be aware that dog breeds with a history of heavy inbreeding naturally have an overall much weaker immune system from the outset. And no surprise, often it is indeed the dog breeds with a history of heavy inbreeding that show a higher incidence of many different ailments!
- Lifestyle of dog and owner: Keep in mind that certain breeds are typically held by certain dog owners. Owners of say a German Shepherd, a Yorkshire Terrier, a Chihuahua, a St. Bernard etc, keep and treat their dogs typically markedly different, and yet certain characteristics of that "lifestyle" are shared by the German Shepherd breed and the St. Bernard breed (owner), while not shared by the Yorkshire Terrier breed and the Chihuahua breed (owner). And so on, you get the point. These lifestyle characteristics may be so pronounced that they cause specific harm to the immune system, and indeed to other body systems too.
What lifestyle characteristics? Well, consider for example:
- Is the dog breed typically owned by people who are "standard allopathic customers"? You know, 6 vaccinations by age 6 weeks or so, another 6 vaccinations before age 6 months, and then the whole shebang every year again when the postcard arrives: "It's time for your dog's vaccinations". In addition, X-rays from as early as age 8 weeks or so. And blanket treatments with antibiotics, even as "prophylaxis"!! Also blanket treatments with steroids and/or NSAIDs. And on and on. All the "goodness" of the doctrine of allopathic medicine.
- Is the dog breed typically owned by people who are receptive to the glossy marketing of the pet "food" industry, maybe just overcredulous, or maybe feeling "too busy at work"? You know, raising the dog on Royal Canin, Taste of the Wild, Lams, or other crap sold at the price of french cousine food. "Treating" the dog to that "great dog treat" that was on offer at the supermarket - which got them almost straight from the rendering plant. And on and on. All the packaged "goodness" of the waste of our modern food chain.
- Is the dog breed typically owned by city-dwellers, or by suburbians? Owners who visit dog parks, or who walk past bins? Is their dog off-leash or on-leash?
Factors like these have a dramatic impact for example on the chance for and extent of complete and natural immunization, as opposed to the very much incomplete and selective immunization that vaccinations offer - and consequently the amount of disorders they cause! All wonderfully explained by our top immunologist in the Dog Expert Interviews with Reviews.
- There is so much more to consider, but let's stop here.
No one seems to have done research in this direction but it is common sense that some dog breeds with their owners share a very similar "lifestyle", while some other dog breeds with their owners share another "lifestyle", and so on. These lifestyle characteristics (both choices and necessities) must significantly contribute to a higher incidence of certain ailments in certain breeds, so much is common sense too. And indeed, for different ailments different combinations of breeds, because some lifestyle characteristics trigger quite specific harm to different body systems!
So let's wait and see when an institute with the necessary funding catches up on these thoughts. Keep in mind that none of all the above, not even our basic medical definitions play a role in mainstream medicine yet, they are neither understood nor applied. Be amazed yourself: here are Google search links to the "top results" of Disease, Disorder, Defect, Symptom, Trigger, Cause, Infection, Inflammation, Chronic, inherited Defect, autoimmune Disorder, ...
Do you see the contradictions in diagnosis? The hypocrisy? The mishmash in treatment protocols?
Great! We are only half-way through this MYGERMANSHEPHERD PERIODICAL and you are already way more streetwise than your MD and your vet. Congratulations!
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