I am, as everyone knows, a big animal lover. Seriously. And when I actually have a chance to promote something that can make a difference in the lives of pets across the board, you can bet I’m going to jump at the chance to promote it. When it happens to be a Nashville-based company producing that product, then I feel even better about it. And that’s why I’m actually writing about Humane Healing – after a long day spent dealing with everything from helping my mom’s traumatized friend find necessary new homes for her beloved mature cats to talking with a cat rescue goddess at Nashville Cat Rescue about the seeming impossibility of finding homes for all the animals around here in need. My husband and I share our home with two intrepid, adventuresome young cats – Sigrun and Castiel – who we seem to allow to run roughshod over us at all hours of the night. When it comes down to it, pretty much all of our friends and family, saving those with hideous allergies or living in evil condos with no pet policies have animals in their lives. Dogs, cats, horses, the odd rodent: We’ve all got them. Along with our friends, we understand that having animals in our lives makes the living richer, more fun, and rather warmer and more pleasant. There are moments when you just need a run in the park with the dog or to snuggle on the couch with the merrily purring cat to make everything else recede from view. My devotion to animals, nurtured by my parents, has meant that as a grown up, I’ve done what I can for a variety of animal charities. How I feel about the pet rescues I’ve worked with is a whole other blog entry, but needless to say, Happy Tales, Nashville Cat Rescue, The Brown Dog Foundation, East Nashville C.A.N. and all the others around here never cease to amaze me. (Dealing with animals in need is a whole different issue I’ll tackle later, suffice to say, if you aren’t ready for the responsibility of a pet, please don’t get one. If you say “it’s just an animal,” then really, really don’t get one.) Through work with Happy Tales Humane here in Franklin, I made the acquaintance of the formidable Kat Hitchcock. She’s a powerhouse of a spokesperson for every needy animal in the state of Tennessee all by herself, though she’s even tinier than me (saying something, I’m just 5’2”). When she makes up her mind to do something, whether arranging for affordable spay and neuter services (a BIG issue, especially here in the South) or saving a tiny abandoned puppy, you can bet it happens. Likewise, when she told me she was teaming up with Sam Savage and the folks at Humane Healing, a new company in Nashville, I was intrigued. It must have taken something amazing to get Kat to shift from the not-for-profit world. Sam himself met with me to help introduce me to the patent-pending product. Savage, an Alabama native and animal lover, came to the company with a background in internet startups, with a commitment to take the small scale product to the next level – something he’s already doing admirably with the recent launch. “What we’re doing can really enhance the lives of pets, they’re good products, absolutely,” he says. “We’re also very focused on giving back to the animal community. We truly think this product is an integral part of first aid for your pet – it’s all-purpose, it’s a pain reliever, it helps close wounds, prevents infection. It’s what you’d do for yourself, and you can now provide that for your animals.” (He adds, sadly, that his own adored older Lab passed away shortly before he moved up here from Mobile, and he and his wife look forward to finding a house that will allow them to get a puppy.) Humane Healing, the company name, is also the brand name of the patent-pending medical product aimed at making your pet happier and healthier. At first glance, it looks like the product (available for dogs and cats, and in a slightly different shape under the name ECM2 for horses) is kind of a Neosporin equivalent for animals. Well, to some extent that’s true, except that products intended for people, like Neosporin, don’t really work on animals, because their fibroblast cells (vital to healing) react differently than a human’s do. And in some cases, human products contain chemicals that aren’t any good for pets, especially given the reality that they tend to lick the hurt. The organic salt technology (the product contains no antibiotics, no steroids, and is non-caustic and non-toxic) in a safe polyethelene base is safe for your pet to lick. Rich in citric acid, benzoic acid, rubidium, organic potassium salts, calcium and zinc, it immediately begins to activate healing at a remarkable rate. Because it can’t be damaged by licking, it means no “cone of shame” for many more dogs, and that’s got to be a plus. I mean, what dog likes a cone of shame? Can I see a raising of paws? I thought not. With both cream and spray on formulations, it can be used for a wide variety of injuries and health issues that make it a “one stop shop for any topical problems” from dry skin to cuts to burns (and more complex equine problems like rain rot for horses using the ECM2 application). The guarantee is that it will dramatically increase healing in pets, and the trials so far have been very impressive. The product is vet approved, already available through some veterinary offices, and quickly arriving at retailers. Why buy a dedicated product? Excuse me? Don’t you have a medicine cabinet full of stuff for yourself? As I’m mentioned before, those things just won’t work on animals – the antibiotic ointments are generally petroleum jelly based, and that’s not good. Home remedies like peroxide and vinegar simply don’t work to close the wound or promote healing, and may cause more pain. Humane Healing will help close your pet’s wound, relieve pain upon application, stay put, and resist the issues of licking, and to increase the speed of healing. So, if I’m promoting this product, clearly I’ve used it. Seriously, have you ever lived with kittens? Because mine are 18 and 10 months, and they “bink” around the house like mad, practicing their Greco-Roman cat wrestling and MMA moves on each other before curling up on the bed together. The end result of that is they tend to have wounds on heads, necks and paws from each other – which aren’t deep or troublesome, but which run the risk of infection (when my late Maine Coon cat Wicket was very young, he developed an ugly abscess from such a play wound). So my husband and I have started applying Humane Healing to the little abrasions, and we’ve definitely noted a faster healing pattern than previously. I’ve also passed tubes on to my dad for his active setter dog, Macallan, who does a lot of running in the underbrush and for my mom’s cat Florrie, who is also young and playful. While Humane Healing can take care of a wide variety of wounds, I’ll add that as always, if a wound is extremely deep or messy, your vet needs to be consulted. But for lesser problems, it’s absolutely a fantastic way to deal with the abrasions and issues your pet may turn up with in daily life – and it will truly make a difference in his or her level of comfort and healing. Of course, I wouldn’t be writing this were the product not being made by a company right here in Nashville. As I said earlier, when a powerhouse like Kat Hitchcock is willing to stake her reputation behind it, then there’s a good chance it’s product I’m going to buy – and I like that it’s coming out of our region. The South, if we’re honest - particularly the rural South - has a long history of not necessarily respecting animals, and that we are now a source for a product that is top of the line to aid in their treatment and health makes me feel pretty good. So, ready to try it out? The price ($30 for a tube that will last you through a 300 applications, since a little goes a long way) is very reasonable. Here in Nashvegas, pick it up at Happy ReTales in Brentwood (I love that store) or outside the area online at NationalPetPharmacy.com, PetFoodDirect.com, Pet360.com, Amazon.com and directly from www.humanehealing.com. The Nashville-based company also sells its products locally through Nashville Pet Products, FarmVet, Franklin Horse Supply and Tusculum Feed Center. You’ll also find a variety of local groomers using it, and their numbers grow daily across the region – and hopefully the nation. The company is currently in promising talks with Whole Foods (which has approved the ingredient list as in accordance with its stringent rules) and several other major retailers. Watch this space for more on that. Love your pet? Humane Healing in your medicine cabinet can make all the difference in the world. Oh, and by the way – I tried a little bit the other day for the hell of it when I cut myself shaving my legs. Yeah – much better than the drugstore human cream. Just saying.