Acupuncture & Herbal Medications


Acupuncture is a system of complementary medicine that involves pricking the skin or tissues with needles and is used to alleviate pain and to treat various physical, mental, and emotional conditions.

Here at Ft. Washington Vet, Dr. Berman performs all acupuncture services as our certified veterinary acupuncturist.  We accept referrals from other animal hospitals for acupuncture, so you do not need to be a full-time client for your pet to receive treatment.

During your pet’s acupuncture appointment, sterile acupuncture needles are inserted in different points around the body to treat the pet.  Most pets readily accept the needles while others may appear restless as their body becomes aware of new sensations caused by the energy flowing through your pet. However, eventually all pets settle down and relax; some even nap.

We play soft music to relax your pet and provide a blanket to lay upon. Owners may wish to bring a favorite toy or stuffed Kong to distract and entertain their pet while treatment is performed.  Each session lasts approximately 30 minutes and some owners even choose to bring a pillow and take a nap while their pet relaxes.

Typically owners will see an immediate effect in their pet right after acupuncture that wears off over time. Usually multiple sessions are needed to achieve the desired effect although some owners bring in their pet for maintenance visits.

Recommended reading: The American Academy of Veterinary Acupuncture


Herbal Medications

Chinese herbal medicine is a holistic approach to healing. Along with acupuncture, it comprises a system of diagnosis and systemic treatment commonly known as Traditional Chinese Medicine or TCM. Traditional Chinese herbal medicine began as an extension of nutrition. A single herb was added to a dish, to enhance its effect on the energy of the body. This has evolved to the hundreds of herbal formula used today.

Acupuncture and Chinese herbs work very well together in animals. Acupuncture provides a more immediate benefit and herbs provide longer term home treatment between visits. Herbs can be used safely with most medications, but it is advised that you inform your vet of any your pet is taking. 

Herbals can be used to treat many conditions, including: gastrointestinal conditions such as vomiting, diarrhea, inflammatory bowel disease or constipation. Others include kidney disease, cystitis & other bladder problems, urinary incontinence, liver, heart & respiratory problems (e.g. asthma or bronchitis), painful osteoarthritis, anxiety, hormone imbalances, behavioral problems, geriatric health issues & immune imbalances.

Pets benefit from Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine because of its emphasis on both the prevention and treatment of disease. As a comprehensive form of treatment, it considers the interrelationship of all the patient’s symptoms, and treatment is aimed at restoring health rather than merely alleviating symptoms.

Herbal Medicine