Many people are interested in alternative and natural health care options for their pets and animals. Luckily, many holistic options are increasingly available. One of the most common things I perform is acupuncture.
What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is the stimulation of points to influence the body to heal itself in certain ways. By treating multiple points, veterinary acupuncturists can treat the specific disease or disharmony present in your animal. Small needles are painlessly placed at specific acupuncture points. Acupuncture can also involve gentle electrical stimulation, injection of saline or other liquid, or even acupressure, a special form of massage.
What Does Acupuncture Treat?
Now that we know a little bit more about acupuncture, we need to know what it can treat and when to use it. Acupuncture is widely applicable to so many different diseases! As I like to say, acupuncture can treat almost anything that may be wrong with your animal, from arthritis to behavior problems.
One example is my own dog, Chloei, who just had surgery to remove a mass from her side. We did surgery to remove the mass, and I performed acupuncture to help speed healing and support her while she recovered. You can read more about Chloei’s recent surgery and recovery here. Another example would be a broken bone. Western medicine can help with the immediate setting and treatment of the broken bone to make sure it will heal well, and acupuncture (and other aspects of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine – TCVM) can help speed healing and support the entire animal holistically while healing occurs. I recommend using Chinese/Eastern medicine like acupuncture in conjunction with regular, Western, veterinary visits.
So, without further ado, here is the list:
11 Problems That can be Treated with Acupuncture!
- Prevention! Okay, so prevention might not be something to be treated so much as a good basic idea. In Chinese medicine, we believe a high level of health and balance in the body should exist until right before death. In Western medical philosophy, health steadily declines, illness and pain are considered normal, and the symptoms are treated as much as possible. Chinese medicine works to treat the cause, not just the symptoms and therefore keeps both people and animals healthier and happier for their entire lives. If your animal has acupuncture treatments several times per year, we can help the body stay in balance and prevent injuries and illnesses, or at least catch them before they become major problems.
- Cancer No one likes hearing that their beloved animal has cancer. Western medicine can help treat cancer, but TCVM can also help with fighting this disease and minimizing side effects from any treatments your animal may be undergoing.
- Allergies In the Summer, many of our animals experience problems with allergies, just as we do. Acupuncture can help reduce symptoms and balance the body to minimize the effects of allergies.
- Pain Management & Lameness From arthritis to injuries to lameness to laminitis, acupuncture can be very beneficial both in terms of pain relief as well as helping to shorten healing time and move Qi (energy in the body) to support injured or arthritic areas.
- Neurologic Acupuncture can reduce the symptoms of seizures, paralysis, and other neurologic conditions. By balancing the body we can help your animal get back to enjoying life.
- Behavior & Performance Issues Many of our animals do things we would prefer they not do, or they may not be performing as they should. Sometimes these behaviors result from a lack of balance and harmony in the body, which TCVM can treat. TCVM can also have a calming effect. It can correct issues such as anxiety, other imbalances, and behavioral problems. We also offer behavioral consultations to work with you and your animal to resolve behavioral issues.
- Stomach & Intestinal Many people think vomiting, especially in cats, is normal, but it definitely isn’t. Whether your animal’s issue is vomiting, diarrhea, colic, or eating things they shouldn’t, TCVM can help treat the underlying causes.
- Metabolic Issues From thyroid disease to equine metabolic syndrome to weight loss, acupuncture can help resolve imbalances in the body to treat these issues. We also offer food therapy and nutritional consultations to help with weight loss.
- Reproductive/Urinary Whether you are trying to breed your animal or resolve a frustrating urinary issue, such as recurrent UTIs or urine dribbling, TCVM can help support regular western veterinary care to help you and your animal get on the right track.
- Heart and Respiratory From heart disease in dogs to asthma in cats to heaves in horses, acupuncture can be very helpful in reducing symptoms and increasing your animal’s quality of life and happiness. We can often increase the amount of time you have left with your animal.
- Unknown or Ill-defined Issues Chinese medicine excels at treating conditions and issues for which Western medicine can’t find a cause or a treatment. If you are frustrated with an issue related to your animals’ health and well-being, Chinese medicine can help!
As you can see, acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine can treat a wide variety of conditions. Even if you don’t see something included in this list, there is a very good chance we can treat it with TCVM and holistic veterinary medicine.