Greetings and Salutations;
Over the past year or so, I have started watching Jackson Galaxy’s Animal Planet program, “My Cat From Hell”. I have to say I like it a lot, as Jackson does a great job of analyzing the family dynamics and finding ways to modify the behavior of the people and animals to make sure that everyone has a positive life. I will say that this show has also re-enforced one of my basic rules of life – that is that there are no bad animals, just bad owners. While there have been a few cats that have had actual issues that made them difficult to live with (The most recent, and perhaps the most famous one, is Lux – the “911 cat” who recently became an internet and news sensation because he was so violent that his owners felt they had to call 911 for aid), a vast majority of the issues are caused by clueless attitudes and actions on the part of the humans in the house. The fact that Jackson does such a good job of analyzing these issues, and finding ways to re-direct and educate the owners in a non-threatening and non-confrontational way says a lot about him and his talents. He is not a bad musician either! Over the past year or so, as his program has gathered a following, he has expanded his commercial presence…which is fine of course. He needs to take advantage of the fame while it lasts.
Alas, not all is happy in Galaxy-Land. As part of his online store (which does sell quite a number of excellent products), he has something called “Spirit Essences”. Now, I had not paid much attention to these, but, recently, thanks to some stress in the cat population here, one of the cats was getting a bit hinky and having some difficulties interacting with the other cats. So, since Jackson has, in his Spirit Essences line a couple of products that are designed to deal with the sort of issues I was having, I looked into getting a couple of bottles and trying to modify the cat’s behavior. Well, I was terribly disappointed to find that Spirit Essences are nothing more than homeopathy! And, for $23+ per ounce, that is REALLY ANNOYING to me.. At least he is honest about it, in that the listed physical ingredients in the bottle are water and alcohol. The description of the process, though, explains that the water is “treated” by shining colored light that has been refracted through special crystals into the water, and, apparently, waving various herbs, flowers and other plants at the water. The water then “retains the energy” of the materials and lights, and then somehow imparts that to the companion animal it is applied to. This is, in my considered opinion, nonsense and nothing more than a way to suck huge amounts of money out of people for water and a small shot of alcohol. Homeopathy has been discredited time and time again…it just does not work. At best, the Essences are providing a Placebo effect…but, the claims of the water magically holding onto the energy of the light and plants are just silly. If the cats that these Essences are used on actually have behaviorial changes, it is because of the increased handling and interaction by the owners as part of the instructions for the proper application of the Spirit Essences.
I really like Jackson, and, appreciate the work he does both to improve the lives of the individual cats who end up on his program, the education he provides about the reality of cats and the way their mind works through the show, and, the support he gives for various shelters and rehabilitation programs around the country, so it pains me to see this sort of foolishness being included in his bag of tricks. In my opinion, if you purchase the Spirit Essences…do not be fooled into thinking you are going to get a magic cure in a bottle that will do anything positive for your companion animal. . Rather, look at it as a contribution to Jackson’s ongoing programs, and, to specific shelters he is supporting (a part of the selling price goes to a shelter)
I am fairly sure that Jackson will not ever see this, or hear of it….there is just TOO much noise on the Net. However…if anyone DOES read this that has contact with him….Please, Please….change the blasted formulation of the Spirit Essences! Put SOMETHING in there besides Water and Alcohol….It will not affect the cost of production any huge amount, and, at least you will be selling something that might do some good! I will suggest (and I give up ANY claims for compensation for this suggestion) that you actually put extracts of the herbs and flowers in the bottles. There is a lot to be said for Aroma Therapy, and, cats DO have a VERY sensitive sense of smell. Jackson….You do a huge amount of good in the world, with your campaign to help companion animals have a good, long life, and, your other good works…but, the homeopathy thing is a stain that can cause big problems for your growing empire.
Bee Man Dave