Caring for all of your animals, at all times.


Phone (01423) 862121 to book an appointment or find out more.

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese system of medicine in which needles are placed into specific areas of the body. It can be used to alleviate pain and increase an animal’s resistance to disease. Acupuncture can be used to complement orthodox treatments or used in situations where conventional medicine has not been successful, is contraindicated or may be too expensive. Veterinary acupuncture has been practiced for over 2000 years having developed from clinical observation by vets in ancient China. Human doctors recognise the value of acupuncture for some of their patients and at Forest House Veterinary Surgery we now offer it as a treatment option for our clients.

How does it work?

The prick of a needle at certain defined points on the skin stimulates specific nerves. Since nerves control nearly all bodily processes, it is thought that acupuncture exerts it effect principally through the nervous system. It may act through pain pathways, reflexes, stimulation of endorphins or electro-magnetic activity.

What conditions can be treated?

Dogs, Cats & Horses

  • Back and neck pain and numerous orthopaedic problems
  • Lameness, paralysis, incontinence, coughs, sinusitisacupuncture in a horse
  • Persistent coughing
  • Skin complaints
  • Allergic conditions
  • Unremitting vomiting and diarrhoea
  • Fits and behavioural problem
  • COPD (‘Heaves’, dust allergy)
  • Back, hip and pelvis problems
  • Summer COPD (pollen allergy)
  • Shoulder lameness
  • Long standing coughs
  • Head-shaking
  • Post viral fatigue
  • Azoturia (‘Tying up’ or ‘Setfast’)

How many treatment sessions will my pet need?

The number of treatments required to effect a cure varies greatly between patients. We generally see cats and dogs weekly for three or four sessions. Thereafter, the interval between treatments may be a few weeks or many months. Horses initially need fortnightly treatments.

Will it hurt, or cause any harm?

Acupuncture is probably one of the safest therapies. We use only single-use, stainless steel needles, identical to those used in human acupuncture. We will always assess your pet’s temperament prior to commencing acupuncture treatment. Human patients feel a “needling sensation” often described as a warm, or tingling feeling. Animals often visibly relax and some may start panting. Needles are never placed in positions where the internal organs could be harmed.

Can I talk to a vet about acupuncture for my pet?

Ring the surgery to discuss your pet’s condition with Graham Barlow. He can advise on the suitability of acupuncture exclusively, or whether combination therapy with conventional medicine would be more appropriate.

How to arrange acupuncture for your pet

Appointments can be booked by contacting the surgery on (01423) 862121.