Acupuncture is not new. It is not "trendy." It has been around for thousands of years and has proven itself as an effective holistic modality. The ancient Chinese identified 361 points in humans and 173 in animals, which when stimulated, can affect the flow of Qi (pronounced chee). The goal is to maintain or achieve balanced qi flow. The Chi Institute in Florida is a world renowned facility for training veterinarians who wish to practice acupuncture. Dr. Huisheng Xie explains the existence of Qi as a life force. There are two opposite forms of Qi: Yin and Yang. Their constant flow through the body should be smooth. When this flow is disrupted, an imbalance occurs. This imbalance results in dis-ease. Needle stimulation in specific locations can release pain-causing blockages and thus restore the free flow of qi, balance of yin and yang, and thereby, comfort. Similarly, an individual can develop a deficiency of qi. Needle placement and manipulation can stimulate qi flow as well. Any disorder causes an imbalance in yin and yang. Acupuncture may be used to aid in the restoration of any imbalance.
This may all sound a bit ethereal; however, modern research bears witness to the validity of these oriental claims. There is a large concentration of nerve tissue at acupoints. Through the function of our neuroendocrine system, stimulation induces the release of endorphins and serotonin. This explains the feeling of well-being associated with an acupuncture treatment. In addition, studies show effects on mast cells, small arterioles and lymphatic vessels. This can help explain the validity of acupuncture use for allergies, high blood pressure, edema and more.
Dr. Jodie became a Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist at the Chi Institute in Florida in 2008. Her experiences in China at the First International Traditional Veterinary Medical Symposium have influenced her oriental practice and its integration with her western medical knowledge.
At Animal Doctor, acupuncture is performed on dogs and cats in a peaceful room laden with rugs and cozy pillows. Client and pet relax to the aroma of essential oils and the sounds of massage-style music. After needle placement, the lighting is dimmed and the doctor leaves so that patient and guardian can heal in solitude. Dr. Jodie often returns to the room to find human and animal on the verge of sleep!
Studies show that the effectiveness of acupuncture for a particular individual or condition increases after the third or fourth treatment. Dr. Jodie encourages a client to commit to four treatments for the patient. Each session takes 20 to 60 minutes. These are scheduled one to two weeks apart, depending on the condition and the initial response. If treatment is rapidly successful, intervals between treatments are increased. If an individual does not respond after four treatments, they are less likely to respond to additional treatments. Some patients receive acupuncture maintenance on a monthly basis, some four times per year. Others are maintained through the utilization of Chinese herbal formulations. At Animal Doctor, we can perform the dry needle technique, electro-acupuncture or aqua-puncture using vitamin B12 or injectable homeopathic remedies from the Heel Company such as Traumeel, Zeel or Discus Compositum. Acupuncture treatments are very safe. Animals are very receptive to acupuncture. Dr. Jodie especially enjoys performing acupuncture on felines. Most enjoy their sessions immensely! Many elderly cats with chronic constipation or arthritis obtain relief through acupuncture.
You may seek Dr. Jodie's acupuncture services if your pet has any of the following conditions:
muscle soreness, intervertebral disc disease, spondylosis, osteoarthritis, degenerative joint disease, seizures, paralysis, constipation, Cushing's, lick granulomas, stifle disorders-partial ACL tears or pre/post repair, luxating patellas
Acupuncture is NOT used for fractures, open wounds, infectious diseases and is cautioned with pregnancy.