Acupuncture is the insertion of needles into specific points on the body to achieve a desired healing effect. It has been used successfully for at least 3,000 years on animals and human beings. In traditional Chinese medicine theory, disease is an imbalance of energy in the body. Acupuncture is believed to balance and correct the flow of energy, thereby assisting the body to heal disease. The overall goal of these procedures is to improve your pet’s well being, make him or her feel better, and in some instances cure the problem.
There are a wide variety of applications alternative medicine can be used for, including:
- Pain control
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Respiratory conditions
- Urinary tract conditions
- Dermatologic problems
- Behavioral issues
The success rate for the use of alternative medicine is variable, depending on the type, severity, and length of time the presenting problem has been present. For chronic problems, initial treatment is generally 6–8 weekly treatments. The acupuncture treatment typically lasts 20–40 minutes and is relatively painless to the animal. It may take 3–6 treatments to determine how well acupuncture will work for your pet. If there is a positive response, the treatments will be extended to once monthly or even to triennially. For acute problems, the treatments may be more frequent, but may not require long-term follow up.
Dr. Evans is a Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist (CVA) through the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society and has done advanced training through the Chi Institute and various continuing education meetings.