Pet Wellness & Acupuncture
No doubt, health-savvy New Yorkers understand the importance of annual medical and dental check-ups. Like their humans, our furry family members count on their regular health check-ups too, but the main difference is that pets age more quickly than people.
Annual Pet Wellness Exams
A typical pet wellness exam includes your veterinarian checking your pet from head to toe. They will check teeth, eyes, and ears, listen to the heart, and make sure breathing and respiration rates are normal. They will palpate your pet’s abdomen to make sure nothing feels out of the ordinary. They may also suggest screenings for potential health issues, discuss and update vaccinations, and inquire about your pet’s lifestyle, diet, dental health, and daily habits. During the wellness exam, your veterinarian can also develop a flea, tick, and parasite prevention program specifically for your pet.
Big or small, regular wellness exams help dogs and cats live to their full potential!
In healthy young pets, an annual health exam is sufficient in most cases and provides the veterinarian an opportunity to closely examine them, ideally preventing or detecting and treating any issues before they become serious. These wellness exams are also the perfect time to have a conversation with your vet about your pet’s routine and any changes you may have noticed in their diet, behavior, and more.
We highly recommend a wellness examination every six months for older pets. Bi-annual examinations allow pet owners to keep their finger on the pulse of their pet’s wellness. Running annual blood work at these visits for middle-aged and older pets is one of the best ways to catch any health changes early. The good news is that many of the changes we see are entirely treatable if diagnosed early. We design senior wellness exams to ensure pets get the most out of their golden years.
Acupuncture is an increasingly popular veterinary therapy that has been used for thousands of years as a natural method of managing pain and stimulating healing.
Acupuncture Gives Pets a Second Chance for an Active Lifestyle
At West Chelsea Veterinary, Dr. Bridget Halligan (our very own Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist) understands why more and more clients request acupuncture as an initial treatment for their pets. This integrative and complementary therapy can be combined with traditional veterinary medicine to provide another option that helps reduce symptoms of pain and inflammation. Acupuncture is also used to treat a variety of ailments, including allergies and orthopedic, neurological, and geriatric conditions.
An Ancient Practice That Helps Pets with Pain Relief
Acupuncture is based on ancient Chinese therapy techniques. There is evidence that traces its use in animals in China from 136 to 265 A.D. Similar to acupuncture for humans, the procedure involves inserting tiny needles into specific pressure points in a pet’s body to stimulate the release of beta-endorphins. These endorphins have the effect of reducing the perception of pain and function in a way that encourages your pet’s body to heal itself naturally.
The needles are very fine and cause only minimal discomfort — most pets don’t show any distress from the pressure and are often relaxed throughout the procedure. Depending on your pet’s medical condition, positive results can appear during the first four treatments. Dr. Halligan offers treatment sessions on a weekly basis.