Vet Blog

Acupuncture Therapy for Pets

July 15, 2021

If you've ever tried acupuncture therapy, you know that it can help relieve pain from injuries and chronic illnesses like arthritis.

But did you know that pets can get acupuncture therapy, too?

Acupuncture can be performed as a type of holistic treatment for certain illnesses in dogs and cats. Animal Care Center of Castle Pines offers both conventional and holistic treatments for pets, including acupuncture therapy.

What is TCVM?

Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM). TCVM encompasses several methods designed to help patients achieve and maintain health including herbal therapy, acupuncture, and nutrition. Holistic methods are important for diagnosing illnesses in pets because a specific disease could result from many different patterns or symptoms.

Practitioners of TCVM use five basic methods of diagnosis in their assessments: looking, listening, smelling, asking, and touching. They will examine the patient's physical appearance and behavior, and also carefully examine the tongue, the pulse, and certain "alarm points" along the meridians. These areas can give insight into the systems that may be out of balance and help them determine a pattern diagnosis.

In TCVM, there are over 300 acupuncture points located on 14 main meridians. These meridians conduct energy, or "Qi," between the surface of the body and its internal organs. Acupuncture strives to balance the Yin and Yang, allowing for the normal flow of "Qi" and restoring health to the mind and body.

What Is Veterinary Acupuncture?

Acupuncture stimulates a pet's nervous system and increases the release of anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving chemicals. Also known as "dry needling," acupuncture is the practice of inserting needles into the superficial skin, subcutaneous tissue, and the muscles at specific points. When inserted, these needles guide energy along the meridians, enhancing blood circulation and improving healing ability.

What Are the Benefits of Acupuncture?

Because acupuncture improves blood flow and increases the oxygenation of tissues, it can provide pain relief to your pet. Acupuncture also relaxes the muscles throughout the body and stimulates the release of endorphins and other naturally occurring pain-relieving chemicals and anti-inflammatory substances.

Acupuncture treatments can help decrease the amount of pain medication needed to treat chronic diseases in pets. Unlike pain medications and anti-inflammatory drugs, acupuncture has no negative systemic side effects, so it can be especially helpful for pets in poor health.

When Should Acupuncture Be Considered?

General conditions that can be treated with acupuncture include:

  • Arthritis
  • Traumatic nerve injuries
  • Respiratory problems, such as feline asthma
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Allergic dermatitis

Holistic Veterinary Acupuncture in Castle Pines

Looking for a veterinarian who can perform acupuncture on your pet? The highly trained team of professionals at Animal Care Center of Castle Pines is skilled at treating pets holistically, day in and day out. Give us a call today to learn more or to schedule an appointment.