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Many of our clients are interested in acupuncture services, but have questions about it. If you have ever been curious about acupuncture for your pet, read on to see answers to frequently asked questions.


what kinds of problems can be helped by acupuncture?

Traditional Chinese Medicine uses acupuncture in the treatment of nearly all diseases. Of course, there are problems where Western medicine and surgery excel (a broken leg, for example). Eastern modalities, which strive to restore balance to the body, seem to excel in treating chronic diseases where Western medicine can fall short.

how does acupuncture work?

Acupuncture points occur at areas of higher electrical conductivity on the skin or where a bundle of nerve, artery, and vein dives into a muscle.

Acupuncture can alter the levels of various neurotransmitters and hormones in the body.

Acupuncture may alter the activity of intermediary nerves in the spinal cord to change how neuro “messages” are relayed to the brain.

Acupuncture has been used in Asia for about 3,000 years; knowledge about it is largely “empirical” (based on experience) because no one was doing biochemical or bioelectric research back then!

does acupuncture hurt?

Acupuncture is not painful, especially since the needles are small and inserted very shallowly. There may be a tingling or warming sensation while the needle is in place. This is associated with mild inflammation and stimulation of the nearby tissues (especially nerves). It is said that this sensation is the movement of chi or energy and some say this is an indication that the acupuncture is working! For some animals and humans, an acupuncture treatment triggers a relaxation response.

when will i see results?

It typically takes four to six treatments for us to assess how well acupuncture may be able to help a particular patient. Some patients feel a little worse (e.g., more stiff) for up to a day after a treatment.

how often will my pet need to come in?

Usually, we strive for weekly appointments at the beginning. Then we try to wean down to as infrequently as possible to maintain the patient. This may be every few weeks or even months.

who practices acupuncture at grand park animal hospital?

Dr. Jessica Fishman integrates acupuncture into her practice of veterinary medicine. She has extensive training in acupuncture, as well as a doctorate in veterinary medicine. The American Veterinary Medical Association deems acupuncture part of the practice of veterinary medicine and surgery, and it is important to have strong knowledge of animal-specific anatomy to perform acupuncture on pets.

Call us to explore if acupuncture is right for your pet or ask at your next appointment.

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