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St Clair Veterinary Group, Acupuncture for pets


What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient healing art which is now being integrated with present day medical treatment for both people and animals. It involves the use of very fine solid needles inserted in to the skin and/or muscle at sites specific for treating certain ailments. The needles stimulate responses in the body such as increasing circulation, relaxing tense muscles and reducing pain and inflammation. There can be effects on the brain with release of hormones and “feel good” factors.

What can acupuncture be used for?

It can be used to treat a wide variety of conditions but is especially effective in helping to increase mobility and reducing pain associated with sore joints and arthritis. It can also help with some skin and inflammatory diseases, reduce the size of some skin warts and promote healing of lick granulomas.

Can it be used with other treatments?

Yes. Acupuncture can be used alone or in conjunction with medication such as antiinflammatories and also herbal or homeopathic treatments.

What is involved in a course of treatment?

An initial appointment taking around 30 minutes is made with Dr Jane Hunter to assess your pet’s condition and suitability for acupuncture and the first treatment is carried out. Your pet needs to be settled either on the table or floor, either standing or lying down, for some minutes. Usually 5 sterile needles at one time are used and may be inserted again at different points – the needles are very fine and usually your pet will hardly feel them.

Do I need to stay with my pet?

It is often ideal for the owner to be present but some animals settle best without the owner.

How will my pet be after treatment?

Your pet may be sleepy after acupuncture as it can have a very calming and relaxing effect. Very occasionally the symptoms may seem worse initially in the following 24-48 hours but this will wear off and then there may be some immediate improvement. Usually there is a cumulative effect and that is why several sessions are planned.

How many treatments are needed?

Usually a course of 4 sessions are planned, once a week or fortnightly. The first treatment will take approximately 30 minutes and the following 15-20 minutes. What happens after the initial course? Your pet’s response will be assessed at the end of this time. If there has been improvement the sessions will continue but less frequently – for example after 3 weeks then after 4 weeks, then as seen to be necessary as a regular ‘top-up’ session. Some animals like some people do not respond to acupuncture, so if there is no response after the initial course the treatment would stop.

What is the cost?

The cost is £65.00 for the initial assessment and treatment, then £48.00 for subsequent sessions. Please note that insurance companies usually cover the cost of acupuncture treatment but you are advised to check with your insurance company first.

What is electroacupuncture?

Electroacupuncture is a stronger form of acupuncture where a small power pack is connected to a pair of needles placed in the body and a low electric current is passed. This treatment can be used instead of manual acupuncture for patients if they are not responding as before, for severe chronic conditions or for cases where there is nerve dysfunction. The cost is £58.00 per treatment.

Who will perform the treatment?

Dr Jane Hunter BVMS PhD MRCVS, a veterinary surgeon who is based at the Glenrothes branch, has trained on both veterinary and medical acupuncture courses. She holds the Diploma in Medical Acupuncture from the British Medical Acupuncture Society and is a member of this organisation and the Association of British Veterinary Acupuncturists. She has been practising acupuncture since 1999 and running clinics for animals and people in Dunfermline since 2004.

When can an appointment be arranged?

An appointment can be made on a Monday morning at our Cadham surgery in Glenrothes where Jane runs her dedicated acupuncture clinics.

01592 745775