What is Acupuncture for Animals?

As pet owners, we always seek the best for our beloved furry friends. When it comes to their health, we strive to provide them with the best care possible. Although traditional Western medicine has made tremendous progress in recent years, alternative therapies have gained popularity as well. One such therapy is acupuncture, which has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine to treat humans. Today, acupuncture is also used on animals, and it has been proven to be a safe and effective treatment choice for a wide range of conditions including arthritis, musculoskeletal injuries, and chronic pain.

Acupuncture for animals is an alternative medicine form that involves inserting thin needles into specific points on the body to stimulate healing and relieve pain. These points are located along channels, known as meridians, which are believed to regulate the body’s flow of energy or “Qi”. By stimulating these points, the body’s natural healing process is activated, and pain and inflammation are reduced. It is often used in conjunction with other forms of therapy, including traditional Western medicine, physical therapy, and herbal remedies.

Acupuncture for your pet
Acupuncture in animals helps with tissue repair

Benefits of Acupuncture for Animals

Acupuncture has many benefits for animals, including:

  1. Pain Relief: Acupuncture can help alleviate pain associated with a variety of conditions, including arthritis, musculoskeletal injuries, and chronic pain.
  2. Reduced Inflammation: Acupuncture can help reduce inflammation in the body, which can promote healing and reduce the risk of further injury.
  3. Improved Mobility: By reducing pain and inflammation, acupuncture can help improve your pet’s mobility and range of motion.
  4. Improved Digestion: Acupuncture can help improve digestive function, which can be beneficial for pets with gastrointestinal problems.
  5. Reduced Anxiety: Acupuncture can help reduce anxiety and stress in animals, which can be particularly beneficial for pets with behavioral problems.

How Does Inserting a Needle Correct an Imbalance?

The most common obstacle to overcome is understanding how a needle placed in a toe or other faraway place can affect an organ at the other end of the body. This is simply explained by understanding embryology (the study of the development of the embryo/fetus). This study explains how cells and tissues migrate during the complex process of a single fertilized egg growing into a fully formed being . These migrations create connections throughout the body, mostly within fascial planes. Most of us are familiar with the term fascia from the various “fascial release” techniques available these days.

Acupuncture utilizes this anatomy to create a series of interactions between the nervous system, the endocrine system, and the immune system. Inserting a needle in an appropriate place will create changes in energy flow, induce natural opioid production, induce stem cell release, increase natural anti-inflammatory production, balance out deficiencies and excesses of substances, and restore well-being.

Acupuncture for pets
Inserting acupuncture needle to help tissue healing in a dog

What to Expect During an Acupuncture Session for Your Pet

During an acupuncture session, your pet will be placed in a comfortable position, while Dr Elisabeth inserts thin needles into specific points on their body. The needles are left in place for 10-20 minutes, and your pet may experience a tingling or numb sensation. Most animals find the treatment relaxing and may even fall asleep during the session.

The number of acupuncture sessions your pet will need depends on their condition and overall health. For chronic conditions, a series of weekly or bi-weekly sessions may be necessary, while acute conditions may only require one or two treatments.

Dr. Elisabeth is dedicated to providing the best possible care for your pet, and she will work with you to create a personalized treatment plan that  is tailored to your pet’s specific needs. She uses a gentle and compassionate approach to ensure that your pet feels comfortable and relaxed during the acupuncture sessions. 

If you’re interested in exploring acupuncture as a treatment option for your pet, contact Bentons Road Veterinary Clinic to schedule an appointment with Dr. Elisabeth Knight.  With her expertise and experience, your furry friend will be in good hands, and you can rest assured that they are receiving the best possible care.