At Animal Konnection we practice energetic acupuncture mainly. Acupuncture usually involves the insertion of fine sterile needles into specific points on the body to produce a healing response. Needles are usually left in place for 10-20 minutes. Each acupuncture point has specific actions when stimulated and are connected to each other via meridians (or channels) inside the body. Veterinarians who use acupuncture in their practice commonly use it for musculoskeletal conditions such as arthritis, intervertebral disk disease, paralysis, lameness and pain from various causes. It is also excellent for treating problems in other systems of the body including the digestive tract, reproductive system, skin and the respiratory tract.
There are different ways to perform acupuncture including dry needles, electro-acupuncture, laser or photonic red-light acupuncture, aquapuncture (injecting minute amounts of liquids such as Vitamin B12, blood or saline into points) and moxibustion (heating needles with moxa herb or using moxa sticks).
Scientific studies have proven the existence of acupuncture points and how stimulation of these points has definitive and positive effects on the body’s physiology. It has been proven to affect the nervous system, improve blood flow, stimulate release of hormones, alleviate muscle spasm and relieve pain. It is now hypothesised that acupuncture channels or meridians run both underneath the skin and around organs at the level of the fascia or connective tissue which is continuous from one end of the body to the other.
Acupuncture increases the body’s release of natural painkillers such as endorphins and serotonin which modify pain pathways in the brain and spinal cord. After treatment animals often exhibit behavioural changes, improved appetite and demeanour, as well as pain relief and improved movement. Some individuals are very responsive to acupuncture and will show dramatic improvement after one treatment. The vast majority however will respond gradually over a period of time. On average 3-6 treatments are required, depending on the issue. Initially these are given weekly or bi-weekly, then at gradually increasing intervals until the desired outcome is achieved. The frequency of follow-up treatments depends on your pet’s individual needs, but regular top-ups are usually required in chronic cases to maintain the therapeutic effect. Some patients, along with some diseases, do not respond to acupuncture.