Acupuncture can relieve the symptoms and lessen the pain associated with many medical conditions of pets. The American Veterinary Medical Association recognizes acupuncture as a safe and effective treatment option and is becoming a mainstream part of veterinary medicine.
Acupuncture is the application of very fine, sterile needles into specific areas of the body called acupoints. These acupoints are located under the skin and they contain a high density of nerve endings, blood vessels, connective tissues, and other important structures. Stimulation of these points results in the release of many chemicals including beta-endorphins, a group of hormones that provide an analgesic or pain-relieving effect. Other released substances play an important role in helping the body to heal itself.
Electroacupuncture is the application of a low level electrical current placed across the inserted needle. This form of acupuncture results in an increased effect to the area and is typically applied in neurologic cases.
The frequency of treatments and duration between sessions depends on your pet. All pets are unique in their response to therapy. While some pets may have immediate results, a minimum of 3-5 treatments 1-2 weeks apart initially is needed before notable improvement is observed in the majority of patients. Thereafter, a maintenance plan can be created which is usually less frequent.