Acupuncture has been around for at least 3000 years. It may have started in horses. Horses were very valuable to the Emperors. They were extremely well cared for. One theory is that after a battle it was noted the an arrow in a certain spot seemed to help some other problem. Over the years notations were passed along as to which points seemed to help which problems. Many acupuncture points become “active” when they need to be needled. They may be tender or swollen or depressed. Often when a point is treated on a human, the entire meridian may be felt. Many of the points used in animals are transposed from human acupuncture points. Others are traditional animals points.
Points are physiologically specific. There is a thinning or crossing of the facia layer and a blood plexus, a nerve and a lymph vessel at each point. Conductivity is increased and resistance is decreased at the point, so machines can be used to find the points on the skin, but you can learn to feel them too. Points are connected along meridians which run from the chest to the tips of the finger, the finger tips to the head, the head to the toes and the toes to the chest. Yin meridians start at the chest and feet and run on the underside. Yang meridians start at the fingertips and head and run on the back and sides. Qi is the energy that moves everything in the body.
Points can be treated with needles (acupuncture), pressure (acupressure), electricity (electroacupuncture), laser or moxa (an herb you burn to warm a point with or without a needle). Tuina can treat points or meridians with massage and Qi Gong can do the same with energy. Dr. Mathis uses all these techniques as necessary.
Most animals enjoy acupuncture and often fall asleep. It is best to keep them from running around too much or the needles will fall out and could become lost.
Animals cannot be needled if they are wet.