The team

Dr. Eric Laarakker – Holistic veterinarian, Founder/ Owner of Healthcare-Academy Den Hoek

Eric Laarakker has been working as a holistic veterinarian and researcher ever since he graduated as a veterinarian from the Dutch University of Utrecht, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in 1992.

During his veterinary medicine studies, Eric Laarakker got convinced that besides Western medicine, also other treatment methods and approaches – such as Chinese Medicine – are essential in order to be able to heal an animal or person in its totality. Therefore, after obtaining his degree in veterinary medicine, he followed courses in Chiropractics, Osteopathy, Manual therapies, Phytotherapy, Classic homeopathy, Chinese acupuncture, Japanese acupuncture, Neural therapy and other energetic treatments.

The knowledge and extensive practical experience in holistic veterinary medicine that he built up over many years has further developed and deepened his beliefs and visions in this field.

Over the years, Eric developed a holistic protocol, in which many therapies complement each other. As a result of this holistic protocol many horses, small animals and humans were treated successfully, even after having been ‘given up’ by regular Western veterinarians and medics.

As researcher, Eric is closely involved with the international research institute Water&Light Ltd. Water&Light conducts research on health and the quality of crops and food for humans and animals. At the Water&Light Laboratory, a technology platform has been created dedicated to the role of biophotonics, water, light and systems physiology in life sciences. This research is characterized by a multidisciplinary team from various universities and research companies. Its focus lies on the development of new concepts and breakthrough improvements in existing biophotonics technology.

In addition, as researcher/ developer Eric is very active in developing products and new treatment methods in Systemic Medicine. Amongst others, he has developed the Phytonics range, a series of 100% natural health products, in collaboration with the Dutch NML Health company. (

Eric is a teacher at several educational institutes, and he gives lectures in the Netherlands and abroad. He is author of the book ‘Horse Types’ (2007), in which he describes different characters of horses based on the 5 Chinese elements, available in Dutch and English. He is also the co-author of the book ‘Het tevreden paard’ (‘The Contented Horse’), about horse welfare in everyday practice, published in The Netherlands in 2009.

Eric is an inspired man, devoted to continuing his activities as veterinarian, researcher, developer and teacher. Besides that, he enjoys spending time with his family and friends, as well as going for a hack on his Arabian stallion Hassan.

 Claudia de Gooijer-Kant – Executive officer and teacher

As executive officer, Claudia is the main contact person within Healthcare-Academy Den Hoek for course participants, lecturers and external relations. After her Human Resource Management studies, she worked in that field at -among others- Oostnet Taxi / Connection (quality project) and Akzo Nobel Information Services (HRM planning of SAP consultants) for a number of years. After this, she went into the family business and together with her father she ran a driving school until its takeover, early 2001.

In 2000 she started to feel an inner drive to switch from commercial business to a more holistic healthcare-oriented  practice and lifestyle, and started a college course ‘Naturopathy in Animals’ (graduated in 2007). During this course she met Eric Laarakker and became inspired by his innovative visions and holistic healthcare. In September 2001 she started working as an assistant at the Holistic Practice for Animals and People Den Hoek. In 2006 she switched from working for the practice, to STEHD (Foundation Education in Holistic Veterinary Sciences), where she ran the daily business. Nowadays she is treasurer and secretary of this foundation. In 2011, the educational activities were transferred from STEHD to Healthcare-Academy Den Hoek, and she became the Executive Officer for this educational institute.

Besides coordinating the educational activities, she is also a teacher in the Connection Sensor course and Lecher Antenna course.

In 2015, she started at the College Education Zen-Shiatsu in Amsterdam, and graduated in June 2019. She established a small practice named Zencourage – for Zen-Shiatsu and holistic healthcare- at her home in Ruinerwold. She enjoys spending time with her family, friends and her animals (horses, lovely mini pigs, dogs, cats and a bunch of chickens).

Dr. Aleid Hillebrand – Holistic veterinarian, teacher and administrative assistant at Healthcare-Academy Den Hoek

After graduating from vet school in Ghent, Belgium, she moved to the UK and worked as a small animal veterinarian in several surgeries. Unfortunately, due to her health she was forced to stop working, but this gave her the opportunity to experience the value of holistic treatment first hand. After gradually getting better, she decided to study Veterinary Acupuncture at IVAS in the Netherlands. She became so enthusiastic about acupuncture and started to study acupuncture at TCMA in 2017, to gain more in-depth knowledge about acupuncture and the desire to treat people as well.

She now works as a small animal holistic vet, treating dogs, cats and rabbits and thoroughly enjoys seeing the positive effects of acupuncture and the holistic treatment on the animals. Besides, she helps Claudia in the Healthcare-Academy wherever there’s an extra hand needed.

She gives anatomy/ pathology classes as a guest teacher at a veterinary technician college (Wellant College), and has given several lectures, the most recent one being ‘Character Types Based on the 5 Elements in Dogs, Cats and Rabbits’; other topics include ‘Vaccination and Titer Testing in Dogs’; ‘CFS, Hypothyroidism, Fibromyalgia and Lyme’s disease’, together with Eric Laarakker; ‘Acupuncture and Neurophysiology’.

1992 – 1998 Veterinary Medicine
2014 Lecher Antenna Course
2015 Connection sensor course
2015 – 2017 IVAS Veterinary Acupuncture
2017 – present TCMA Acupuncture

Dr. Linda Boggie – Veterinary Acupuncturist (CVA, FAAVA), course coordinator and teacher TCM courses (Veterinary Acupuncture, Veterinary Chinese Herbal Medicine, Food therapy)

Dr. Linda Boggie graduated from Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1987. She became certified by the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society (IVAS) in 1995 and incorporated acupuncture into her existing small animal practice. She completed the Chinese herbal course at the Chi Institute in 2004. In 2014 she became a Fellow of the American Academy of Veterinary Acupuncturists.
In 2003 she moved to The Netherlands and has an integrative practice in Deventer with her husband, a veterinarian specialized in dentistry and orthopedics in companion animals.
Since 1998 she has lectured for various acupuncture courses, advanced continuing education seminars, congresses and symposiums in the USA, Canada, Scandinavia and other countries in Europe, Australia, China and Taiwan.
An active member of the IVAS since 1995, she served as President from 2002-08 and remains involved as the Examination committee chair and member of the Board of Directors.
She enjoys Chinese veterinary medical practice, lecturing on Chinese medicine, acupuncture and the use of Chinese herbs in small animals. Any spare time is enjoyably spent with her husband, their Friesian horses, cat, two dogs, a Shetland pony and a goat.

Annette Denekamp – Acupuncturist, teacher workshop ‘Food According to the Five Elements’

After working as nurse and nurse anesthesist for more than 20 years, I decided to follow my heart’s desire and start the acupuncture course at TCMA in Amsterdam. I’ve been an acupuncturist since 2010 and since 2014 I work at Den Hoek as well. Besides, I am practical tutor at the TCMA (human acupuncture academy)

I attended several Continuing Education courses and seminars, amongst others: Advanced life support, acupuncture for gynecological and menopausal problems, Meridian Wave Acupuncture (a special technique for pain), Cosmetic and facial acupuncture, electroacupuncture. At the Healthcare-Academdy Den Hoek I completed the Connection sensor and lecher Antenna courses.

In 2016 I completed the course for Dorn-therapy. This is a subtle and effective manipulation technique with which several problems and misalignments of the spine and the pelvis can be treated. This method is safe and much softer than for example chiropractic manipulation.

Besides all methods of treatment as applied at Den Hoek, I have also specialized in the Food According to the Chinese Five Elements.

Dr. Dietrich Graf von Schweinitz – Veterinary Acupuncturist, teacher in the Veterinary Acupuncture course

Dietrich qualified in the USA at the Univ. of Georgia in 1982, practiced in Maryland until 1986, moved to the UK and founded an equine practice in Guildford in 1989. His acupuncture interest began in the USA and he became certified through the International Vet. Acupuncture Society (IVAS) in 1998. He is a past President of the Association of British Veterinary Acupuncturists and continues as its Education Director; he also served on the IVAS Ed. Committee and Board of Directors. He now has a referral acupuncture practice along with his teaching commitments. He conducted and published pioneering research in the thermographic monitoring of autonomic responses to acupuncture in horses with chronic pain syndromes and in needle electromyographic recordings of myofascial trigger points in horses (Acupunc in Med, & Vet Clinics of NA, Equine Practice). More recently he authored the papers “Electro-acupuncture for nerve injury in the horse” in Equine Vet Educ. 2014, and “Acupuncture for pain control” in Robinson & Sprayberry’s Current Therapy in Equine Medicine, 7th ed., 2015.

Dr. Edwin Lipperts – Pharmacist, Chinese phytotherapist, teacher in Veterinary Chinese Herbal Medicine courses

Drs. Edwin Lipperts is a licensed pharmacist and Chinese phytotherapist. He studied Pharmacy at the Utrecht University (NL) and completed a 2-year post-graduate pharmacist education in 1994 and has since been working as a pharmacist. He also completed a 3-year TCM Phytotherapy course at OTCG (Antwerp, Belgium). Edwin is the owner of De NatuurApotheek, EuroherbsPharmacy and Sanjiao.

 Dr. Ellen Kral – Veterinary Acupuncturist, teacher in the Veterinary Acupuncture course

After graduating as an equine veterinarian from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at the Utrecht University in The Netherlands in 1993, Ellen studied human acupuncture for three years and then became an IVAS certified veterinary acupuncturist in 1997. Thereafter she studied several more subjects like Osteopathy, Chiropractic, Cranio-Sacral Therapy, as well as Eastern therapy forms like TCM Herbs and Shiatsu. Besides these studies, she attended many courses, deepening her knowledge of TCM and TCVM while working in 100% TCVM Equine practices. Besides practicing, Ellen enjoys teaching in the veterinary acupuncture course at Healthcare-Academy Den Hoek.

Dr. Ina Gösmeier – Veterinary Acupuncturist, veterinary Chinese herbalist, teacher in the Veterinary Acupuncture course

Practicing veterinarian and dressage rider, additionally qualified in acupuncture and as a Certified Veterinary Chinese Herbalist (CVCH) from the Chi Institute and China National Society of TCVM.

Dr. Gösmeier studied veterinary medicine at the University of Giessen, after which she worked in a practice for horses and small animals. She subsequently obtained the specialist qualification in Acupuncture and undertook additional studies in Chinese herbology at universities in China and Switzerland.

Dr. Gösmeier has been running her own referral practice for traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine since 1990, and in 2002 she obtained her qualification as a Wings Kinesiology Practitioner for Animals.

Ina Gösmeier has herself taken part in Grand Prix dressage and she obtained her qualification of “Master in Horse Breeding and Management” in 1989. Thanks to her extensive practical experience, she is also an in-demand writer and lecturer both in Germany and abroad. She has so far written four specialist books and contributed numerous articles to journals specialising in horse riding and veterinary medicine.

Since 2008, Dr. Gösmeier has been teaching the application of Chinese herbs for veterinary practitioners at the Qi Academy; this led to her qualification as a Certified Veterinary Herbologist (CVH). She is also involved in the teaching of acupuncture to veterinary practitioners at universities and lectures regularly in Britain, Ireland and the USA.

Since 2002, Ina Gösmeier has been responsible for the horses of German teams at championship events, where her job is to maintain the health, well-being and performance of the horses using naturopathic methods.

 Dr. Katja Görts – Holistic veterinarian, teacher in the Veterinary Acupuncture course

Practicing veterinary medicine, chiropractics, acupuncture, kinesiology.

Katja Görtz studied veterinary medicine at the University of Veterinary Medicine in Hannover. After completing her studies in 1999, she worked in industry for a number of years. She also underwent training in veterinary chiropractics at the Backbone Academy and in veterinary acupuncture at the GerVAS in 2009. Alongside her work in her practice, she works as an instructor for the Backbone Academy and also successfully completed her training as a WINGS kinesiologist for animals (WINGS®Tierkinesiologin) in 2010.

Katja is a fan of versatility in horses. She owns a twenty-year-old Zweibrücker mare that is successful in all disciplines up to Class L.

 Peter den Dekker – Teacher in Chi Kung / Still Dynamics

Peter den Dekker (1958, The Hague, The Netherlands) teaches since 1985. He gives Chi Kung and Da Cheng Chuan training in in The Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Germany, Switzerland, Finland and Italy. He is the author of the book The Dynamics of Standing Still.

Peter uses Chi Kung as a method of improving body structure and health. Many of his students are professionals in music, dance and theatre. He leads special training for people with immunity weakness and is a sought-after guest teacher at academies and congresses. For almost twenty years he studied and trained Chi Kung and Da Cheng Chuan under sifu Lam Kam-Chuen.

Peter has been teacher and principal at various academies for shiatsu and oriental preventative medicine. For a period of twenty years he worked in a (Japanese) Acupuncture Practice in Amsterdam. At Healthcare-Academy Den Hoek, Peter teaches in the Veterinary Acupuncture Course and organises specific Chi Kung training days. Peter lives with his partner and daughter alternately in Amsterdam, Dalfsen and Portugal.

 Drs. Peter Kruithof – TCM specialist and practitioner, teacher in Veterinary Chinese Herbal Medicine courses

Drs. Peter Kruithof is a TCM specialist and practitioner. He studied Chinese, and Chinese medicine in the Chinese language at the Shan Dong University of Chinese Medicine in China for almost 7 years.

 Petra Tjeertes – Acupuncturist, Phytotherapist, coach, teacher in Veterinary Chinese Herbal Medicine courses

Petra Tjeertes is a licensed acupuncturist, phytotherapist and coach, and works as a TCM practitioner in both her own practice since 2009, and in her father’s TCM practice.

 Dr. Viviane Miellet – Holistic veterinarian, teaching assistant in the Veterinary Acupuncture course

Dr. Viviane Miellet graduated from the University of Utrecht (the Netherlands) Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in 2002. While working in a small animal practice she followed several manual therapy courses for humans and animals from 2009 onwards. Since 2014 she has her own integrative veterinary medicine practice in Schoorl (NL) where she uses, in addition to acupuncture, Animal Normalization Therapy, a technique developed by Patricia Kortekaas, a PT from Oregon, USA. Viviane completed the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society Acupuncture Course in 2014 and was certified by IVAS in 2015.