Acupuncture available at Minster Veterinary Centre
Here at Minster Veterinary Centre we are able to offer our patients many therapies including acupuncture. Acupuncture has been used for thousands of years to treat a variety of problems in both humans and animals. There are now multiple publications on the benefits this treatment can have on animals.
Veterinary acupuncture is the process of placing very fine needles into specific points on our patient. The needles are so fine a lot of the time they are not even felt. These needles stimulate multiple systems in the body, including the nervous, immune and hormonal systems. The outcome of this is a change in the body’s natural chemicals that have a beneficial effect on how your pet feels.
In our pets, acupuncture is mainly used to help relieve pain caused by musculoskeletal problems, namely arthritis. But it can also be used in the treatment of a variety of other problems such as respiratory, digestive, neurological and skin issues. Acupuncture can also be used to aid in wound healing and the rehabilitation of tissues after injury.
Legally in the U.K, veterinary acupuncture can only be administered by an appropriately qualified veterinary surgeon. Our vet Amy Clayton completed her Association of British Veterinary Acupuncturists training course in 2017 and has been practicing ever since. Amy first became interested in acupuncture after seeing the benefits one treatment had on her own dog, Eric, who has elbow dysplasia. Eric has had regular acupuncture treatments since 2017, which Amy feels has helped to keep him comfortable and mobile for so long. Eric is now over 13 years old and still giving Amy the run around. Acupuncture can be used in conjunction with more conventional medicines and as a sole treatment. A full assessment, diagnosis and discussion is needed to tailor a treatment plan to the individual patients needs.
If you are interested in discussing acupuncture as a treatment option for your pet, please call our Southwell practice on 01636 812133. A minimum of 4 treatment sessions a week apart is recommended initially, but this can be modified to your pets requirement. The initial appointment which involves a full clinical assessment, in depth discussion and the acupuncture, costs £71.50. After this the cost is £55 per treatment. The treatment is performed in a consult room and you are able to stay with your pet. Acupuncture tends to have a calming effect on most patients and they are not concerned during the treatment process.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture has evolved from the ancient art of placing needles into locations on the body to alleviate pain. It has been practiced by the Chinese and other Eastern cultures for thousands of years and may be used to treat a wide variety of illnesses. A combination of Traditional Chinese Medicine (aiming to restore equilibrium) and Western Scientific Acupuncture (aiming to stimulate the body’s repair mechanisms in the nervous, immune, hormonal and cellular systems) can be effective at treating many chronic disease processes.
What conditions can respond to acupuncture?
Acupuncture treatment should follow an accurate diagnosis and appraisal of all treatment options. Conditions associated with inflammation and pain are most commonly treated with acupuncture. A 70% response rate is generally seen in animals.
Small Animal Conditions include:
- Hip dysplasia
- Intervertebral disc disease
- Soft tissue sprains/strains
- Lick granulomas
- Wound healing problems
- Traumatic nerve injury
- Certain types of paralysis
- Feline asthma
- Chronic rhinitis
- Non-specific vomiting and diarrhoea
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Feline lower urinary tract disease (cystitis)
What happens during the treatment?
The initial consultation will involve a full assessment of the patient and location of points specific to your pet’s condition. Thin sterile needles will then be inserted into these specific points. These needles will be left in place for 5 – 20 minutes. Most patients accept acupuncture treatment without destress and even become more relaxed, which can last 24 hours. Occasionally pets can become euphoric. You can remain with your pet during the whole treatment session.
On average each patient requires 4 weekly sessions initially to determine if acupuncture is beneficial to them. After this top-up sessions can be used when needed. Each patient will have a treatment plan tailored to their individual needs.
Is it safe?
Acupuncture is extremely safe when practiced by a trained veterinary surgeon. Occasionally a patient’s clinical signs may deteriorate for 1-2 days. This suggests that fewer points should be used the next time, but long term these patients are likely to respond well.
How much does it cost?
The initial consultation and first session is £71.50. After this the cost is £55 per session. Session time is approximately 30 minutes.
How to book an acupuncture session or to gain more information?
Please contact our Southwell practice on 01636 812133.