5 Elements and Animal Care

How To Use Five Element Theory To Help Your Animals

Collie Dog running

What is the Five Element Theory?

This originated in China, around 3,000 years ago, and is one of the cornerstones of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine, being a way to help restore health.

The five elements are: Fire, Earth, Metal, Wood and Water.

Each element is dependent on the other four, and whilst we (and our animals) will often be dominated by a particular element, it's usually the case that all five elements may be present to some extent. Additionally, the dominant element can vary as we age. Whichever is the dominant element type, in a healthy body, they all maintain a balanced harmony. Where there is ill-health, the five elements are out of balance, and so by restoring this harmony it's then believed to help promote health.

The five elements all have specific physical or emotional traits associated with them. Depending on which dominant element type your horse, dog or other animal is at any particular period of his/her life, will help understand the behaviour and so can help target the specific support needed to promote health and wellbeing.

Five Element Theory

Which of the Five Elements is My Animal?

(1) Fire

This type of animal tends to:
  • Love stimulation
  • Be brilliant or fails miserably
  • Have foreleg lameness

(2) Earth

This type of animal tends to:
  • Be amiable
  • Be dependable
  • Have chronic muscle soreness

(3) Metal

This type of animal tends to:
  • Like order
  • Be unemotional
  • Be sensitive to dryness - can have dry skin, dry cough

(4) Wood

This type of animal tends to be:
  • Bold
  • Have muscle spasms

(5) Water

This type of animal tends to be:
  • Independent
  • Charming

There are of course many properties for the elements and the individual animal or person - and the above is only a very brief indication of some typical traits!

What therapies for animals use Five Element Theory?

The application of Five Element Theory can be applied to the diet your animal has, to his/her everyday lifestyle. For instance if your animal is a "fire animal" then neutral or cooling foods can be better than having warm foods which can enflame an excitable situation. Different herbs can also be chosen depending on what's needed to help 'balance' the animal and restore equilibrium.

Please remember that no complementary therapy treatment can replace medical advice from a qualified physician - and professional advice should always be sought if you (or your animal) are at all unwell before using any therapies or supplements/products.