What We Do


Herbal Medicine


Herbal medicine has been used in China for thousands of years for the treatment and prevention of disease. The term herbal medicine refers to the fact that most Chinese medicines are plant derived.


As with acupuncture, the basis of herbal medicine is to restore balance of yin and yang energy, as imbalance can constitute disease. Multiple herbs can be combined into formulas, enhancing the therapeutic effect.


Herbal medicine can be used to address both short term (acute) and long term (chronic) conditions. It can also be used to boost the immune system to help prevent illness.


Chinese herbs have a high margin of safety and low incidence of toxicity. Of the known 7000 medicinal herbs, only ten are considered inherently toxic. Chinese herbs can be used with most western medications, but it is important to discuss this with your veterinarian so potential drug interactions can be evaluated. Typically the dosage of western pharmaceuticals is reduced if used concurrently with Chinese herbal medicine.





Conditions that may benefit from Chinese herbal medicine include:


  • Asthma

  • Behavior disorders (fearfulness, anxiety, noise sensitivity)

  • Cardiology (congestive heart failure, mitral valve disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy)

  • Cough (chronic)

  • Endocrine disorders (Cushing’s disease, diabetes, hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism

  • Gastrointestinal issues (anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea, megacolon inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), feline gingivitis, stomatitis, malabsorption/maldigestion, fecal incontinence

  • Geriatric (support of aging organ systems)


  • Hepatobiliary (chronic hepatitis, cholangiohepatitis, hepatic lipidosis)

  • Immune system disorders (discoid lupus, immune mediated polyarthritis, general immune deficiency)

  • Dermatology (allergic dermatitis, hot spots, acral lick granuloma, pruritus, otitis)

  • Musculoskeletal (canine hip dysplasia, osteoarthritis, degenerative joint disease)

  • Neurologic (paralysis, intervertebral disc disease, fibrocartilaginous emboli, degenerative myelopathy, epilepsy, geriatric  vestibular syndrome, fecal incontinence)

  • Oncology (adjunct therapy to minimize side effects of chemotherapy)

  • Sinusitis (chronic)

  • Urinary (chronic renal failure, cystitis, urinary and kidney stones, urinary incontinence)




Veterinary acupuncture has been practiced in China for thousands of years. The Chinese understand health as a state of balance between two opposite yet integrated forms of energy, known as yin and yang.


When yin and yang are in balance, the body is in a state of equilibrium, or health. A disruption of qi energy leads to an imbalance of yin and yang which can result in disease.


Acupuncture is the stimulation of specific acupuncture points along known channels, or meridians, located throughout the body that influence vital organ function in the respiratory, digestive,cardiovascular, urogenital, immune and central nervous systems.






Stimulation of acupoints with acupuncture needles stimulates the flow of qi energy and re-establishes balance between yin and yang, allowing the body to heal itself. Modern scientific research has revealed that acupoints correlate to areas of high density nerve endings, small blood vessels and lymphatics. Stimulation of these acupoints cause the release of beta endorphins, serotonin and other neurotransmitters.


Acupuncture is a proven, safe and effective medical procedure. Sessions vary in length from 15-30 minutes. The number of treatments caries as well, from 1-2 sessions for acute conditions to 4-8 sessions for chronic problems. Geriatric and degenerative conditions may require periodic maintenance sessions for optimal benefit.


Acupuncture is well tolerated in the majority of patients. Sedation is not recommended prior to a session because the treatment effectiveness may be reduced.


Many conditions can be effectively treated with acupuncture and include:




  • Immunodeficiencies

  • Kidney insufficiency

  • Lick granulomas

  • Liver disease

  • Muscular soreness

  • Nausea

  • Pain

  • Seizures

  • Tendon and ligament injury

  • Vestibular syndrome

  • Vomiting

  • Anxiety

  • Asthma

  • Back pain

  • Cancer (quality of life, pain reduction, and the easing of side effects commonly caused by western medications)

  • Constipation

  • Degenerative joint disease

  • Ear infections

  • Facial nerve paralysis

  • Geriatric weakness

  • Incontinence (urinary and fecal)

  • Irritable bowel syndrome


Traditional Chinese Food Therapy


The history of Chinese food therapy traces to 700 B.C. Food is an important source of life energy, or qi. The quality of the food ingested influences the quality of the qi energy available for vital organ functioning.


The Chinese view of nutrition follows the concept of yin/yang energy balance. Food energetics are classified based on four criteria.



  • Thermal nature (hot, warm, neutral, cool, cold)

  • Flavor  (sweet, acrid, sour, bitter, salty)

  • Organ network affected (spleen, stomach, lung, large intestine, kidney, bladder, liver, gallbladder, heart, small intestines)

  • Direction of movement of qi energy in the body (upward, downward)

As with acupuncture and herbal therapies, food therapy aids in the prevention of disease as well as the treatment of acute and chronic disease.


Eating a well balanced diet helps keep the body in balance, serving as a reminder that food is medicine.


As a certified veterinary food therapist, I can evaluate your pet’s diet and make recommendations to optimize their health.