It’s no secret that I’m dedicated to natural healthcare – for my family AND our animals.  Short of a couple of absolute emergencies (which are few and far between, thankfully), we’re pharmaceutical and over-the-counter medication free, and have been for the better part of 20 years.  And as I learn more about how to use more holistic remedies, I’m able to address a whole lot of issues when they come up.

That said, we’ve never had to deal with a major, life-threatening disease outbreak for ourselves or our animals.

With all the debilitating transmissable illnesses that seem to be growing in their ability to wreak havoc as they develop resistance to everything conventional medicine can throw at them, I’m finding it’s becoming critical to learn simple, practical and effective means of dealing with illness and outbreaks.  For us, it’s prevention through quality organic, locally grown and raised food, supplements, essential oils, and on occasion homeopathy.  I’ve been fascinated by homeopathy for a long time, and after getting some mind-blowing results for an issue my son was having, I thought it was time to dive in to learning more.

So today we’re thrilled to have the contribution of Joette Calabrese, noted homeopath (see her bio – and a special offer for readers – at the end of the article), sharing her experience using homeopathy to care for a crisis with her poultry flock.  It’s quite a lesson, and is a brilliant illustration of just how powerful homeopathy can be.

Enjoy – hope you learn as much as I did!

The Great Chicken Epidemic of 1990:
How Homeopathy Saved My Little Flock

By Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na)

In the 1990s, I was a mom raising three very active boys while trying to study homeopathy, our chosen method of health care. In my early 20s, I had been married to a neurosurgeon and gone the traditional route of treating every ailment with antibiotics and over-the-counter and prescription drugs. The marriage ended and so did my health. As a side effect to all the drugs, I ended up suffering from chronic fatigue, headaches, asthma, arthritis and anxiety. As if that wasn’t enough, my body was sensitive to every chemical, toxin and unnatural substance imaginable. I ended up unable to work or even tolerate most social situations.

After years of searching, I found help and healing in homeopathy. Within months of beginning to work with a homeopath, I was completely recovered. I was so smitten by my transformation that I embarked on a journey to learn all I could about this wonderful, safe, effective form of medicine.

I eventually remarried and started a family. The more I learned about homeopathy, the more I was convinced that the only way to raise my boys was to go the natural route and trust homeopathy when things went awry. This belief was strengthened when I saw my infant son drawn out of a serious reaction to a vaccination in a matter of minutes by the administration of the correct homeopathic remedy. The more I learned about and used homeopathy, the more convinced I became of its effectiveness and safety.

When our family moved to the country, it seemed a natural decision to raise chickens. One morning, our sons noticed that one of the chickens was walking “funny”, with a peculiar rigid gait. Around one in the afternoon, we observed her taking frequent sips from the water trough. Shortly after came the onset of violent diarrhea and vomiting. By 3:00 p.m., she was lying on the ground, trembling and salivating; by 4:00 p.m., she was dead.

My first thought was poisoning, possibly from rat poison, as our free-ranging flock had been known to go off our property to a neighbor’s barn. The chicken’s unpleasant demise appeared to be an isolated incident, so we buried her and kept the flock closer to home.

However, two days later, another chicken began to act the same way. Up to that point, I’d never remedied an animal, but I knew it was time to open that door. I knew that when choosing remedies for animals, we can approach an animal the same way we would a person. We choose the remedy that best fits the individual’s ideology, personality and pathology.

This second chicken appeared cold from the onset, and, still assuming she may have been poisoned by something, perhaps arsenic, I gave her Arsenicum album 30 but with no response. I phoned a veterinary friend to see if she had any ideas. She thought it sounded like fowl cholera. I looked up fowl cholera in my Chicken Health Handbook, and sure enough, the symptoms matched.

The book warned that one could expect a 45-55% mortality rate from fowl cholera in a flock, even with the use of the recommended antibiotics. Those birds that survived would often be left with debilitating chronic cholera that resulted in the inability to lay eggs. I’d prided myself on the health of our chickens, giving them organic homemade mash with flaxseeds and plenty of worms. I certainly didn’t want half my flock dead and the remaining half chronically ill, not to mention that our hens were not only our egg sources but much loved pets.

But I knew that homeopathy had a sterling reputation in handling epidemics. In the 1918 flu, for example, conventional medical hospitals had a 28% mortality rate, while the homeopathic hospitals lost only 2% of their patients. I trusted in homeopathy’s ability to handle our burgeoning chicken epidemic.

By the time I was off the phone with my friend, my 11-year-old and 6-year-old sons came into the house with two more sick hens… their two favorites, Gloria and Gladys! Gloria was lying on her side, salivating with slight tremors. I knew that meant she could have less than one hour left. Gladys was still at the thirsty, diarrhea, vomiting stage.

Quickly I looked under “rectum; cholera” in my repertory book, hoping to find that fowl cholera was enough like human cholera to indicate the same remedies. Cuprum metallicum, Veratrum album and Camphor were the leading remedies. I didn’t bother to read the differentials at that moment, as I knew Cuprum metallicum covered stiffness of the extremities, which would explain the odd little gait the chickens displayed. I ran to my remedy stock, found Cuprum, promptly opened Gloria’s little beak and inserted two pellets. Gladys got the same.

After approximately three minutes, I noticed that Gloria was sitting up. Gladys no longer had diarrhea and vomiting, so the boys and I just watched. When Gloria began to tremble again and go down on her side, I gave her another dose, and within five minutes, she was walking. Gladys needed another dose shortly after, and it revived her enough to start pecking the floor, a good sign in chickens. Gloria received her third dose approximately two hours later, when she appeared to be weakening again. This revived her to full chicken activity by the end of the day!

Later, I gave Cuprum metallicum 30c to the entire flock as a prophylactic measure. One of my sons brought the chickens to me one by one to give them each a dose. In hindsight, I realize I could have put a dose into their water to cover the entire flock, but it felt good to take part in dispensing the remedy.

We watched carefully for the next two days. There were no relapses and no new victims. Because this was an epidemic, I viewed each chicken as part of the whole community and assumed that they had all contracted cholera, as we have only one watering trough. We scrubbed down the coop and found the source of the infection: a dead wild bird under the hay pile. Fowl cholera usually strikes chickens that have contact with an infected wild bird.

There were no additional deaths and no chronic illness following this incident. Gloria and Gladys each happily laid one egg daily nearly all year, as did the entire flock. What a powerful reminder of homeopathy’s sterling reputation in an epidemic! And I have seen the same marvelous results in restoring health to my family and my clients with a variety of other illnesses and injuries.

I recommend that every home have a homeopathy kit, and the main caregiver in that home learn how to use this powerful medicine. Homeopathic remedies are affordable (averaging $8.00 to $15.00 per bottle), easy to store and will last a lifetime. They are also powerful medicine that helps the body find its own way to health and balance without the dangerous side effects of drugs.

If your goal is to become self-sustaining and empowered to care for yourself and your family, you owe it to yourself to discover how homeopathy can fit into your health care plan. For people, for animals, for maintaining health and for restoring health… homeopathy is a powerful ally.

For more information and free resources about homeopathy, visit my website at I think you’ll be glad you did!

Want to Get Started with Homeopathy?

Joette Calabrese is offering a sale on her most popular 100-remedy homeopathy kit. This kit, which normally sells for $257.00 plus shipping, is now on sale for $234.90 with free shipping within the continental US. Plus, you will get a free digital download of Joette’s book Cure Yourself and Family (value $37.00), which covers the principles of homeopathy and teaches you how to handle common illnesses and family first aid. And if you share the sale page with a friend, you will also get a digital download of Joette’s popular book Perform in the Storm, Homeopathic First Aid (value $37.00). The sale starts April 7 for followers of Modern Homesteading.  Supplies are limited. Prices apply to online sales only. Click here for more information:

12.20.11 JoetteJoette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(NA) is a distinguished American homeopath, public speaker and author. She began her studies in classical homeopathy in 1986 and completed her five-year degrees in the North American Homeopathic Master Clinician Course and the Dynamis School of Advanced Homeopathy in Toronto. She is nationally certified by the North American Society of Homeopaths and the Council for Homeopathic Certification, accrediting organizations that are dedicated to maintaining high standards of homeopathy in North America. Joette’s mission is to empower moms and other caregivers with the knowledge to take charge of their family’s health through her educational programs and blogs. For more information on Joette and on homeopathy for preparedness, visit

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