I am often asked what is acupuncture good for? What does Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM) treat? This is a large topic – TCVM has a wide range of applications. One great application, though, is for chronic illness. You may notice as your pet ages that he or she is developing numerous and seemingly unrelated symptoms. My boxer Melody, for instance, at age 13 has a history of Boxer Cardiomyopathy (a heart disease), anxiety, kidney insufficiency, and urinary tract infections, and arthritis and weakness in her back legs. Totally unrelated, right? In Chinese Medicine, these conditions are all linked to one another and can be managed with diet, herbal formulations, and acupuncture to help Melody keep her good quality of life. Melody’s issues are linked to two elements – Heart (Fire) and Kidney (Water). It just so happens that Kidney is the Grandparent to the Heart in Chinese medicine. Her seemingly unrelated symptoms are not random or unrelated at all.
I see this in younger patients as well. Pets with chronic, itching skin that then start having behavioral issues (acting more grumpy, trying to bite). Dogs with hip dysplasia and urinary incontinence. Cats with chronic vomiting and abnormal litter box usage. In TCVM, these issues are related.
If you are finding that your pet is developing more and more symptoms and needing more and more medications to manage these symptoms, reach out to see if TCVM may be a good option for management. You may be surprised at how manageable these symptoms actually are.
Tracy Duffner, DVM
Island Holistic Veterinary Center