An ancient healing art developed in China more than 4,000 years ago, acupuncture is a therapeutic technique that enhances a body’s natural healing abilities.
What is Animal Acupuncture?
Acupuncture involves inserting very fine, sterile needles into specific points mapped over the body. The needles stimulate circulation, stimulate the release of hormones, and help restore the body’s natural balance.
Animal acupuncture should only be performed by a trained and certified veterinary acupuncturist. Dr. Tricia Munroe, cVMA, CCRT, completed her training and certification in veterinary acupuncture in 2015 and has been using the technique to provide our patients with an additional therapy option.
Conditions that Acupuncture Can Improve
More and more pet owners are trying acupuncture for their furry family members. Pain management is one of the most common uses for acupuncture, often in conjunction with a more traditional treatment plan.
Several common conditions effecting animals can improve with the addition of acupuncture treatment, including:
- arthritis and back pain
- immune disorders
- decreased appetite
- skin conditions
- intestinal problems (diarrhea and constipation)
- metabolic problems (liver and kidney disease)
- urinary incontinence
Pets typically relax and enjoy acupuncture therapy. The tiny pinch caused by the needle insertion is very tolerable and often unnoticed. Many pets relax and fall asleep while they wait the 15-30 minutes before the needles are removed.
Initially, Dr. Munroe recommends acupuncture on a weekly basis, but as a pet’s condition improves, treatment sessions are often changed to a monthly or as needed basis.
About Veterinary Acupuncture
Acupuncture is one of the safest medical therapies, using no chemicals or medications. Veterinary acupuncture was approved as an alternative therapy by the American Veterinary Medical Association in 1988. A new development in animal acupuncture is the use of therapeutic lasers instead of needles.