Complementary, or holistic, medicine treats the whole animal, rather than a particular disease, restoring the body to its normal state. It is especially useful for chronic problems.
Veterinarians practicing complementary medicine have additional training in their chosen specialties. Among the most common are acupuncture, chiropractic, massage therapy, and herbal medicine.
Acupuncture is part of a medical system that has been used to treat animals in China for thousands of years, says Shen Huisheng Xie, DVM, Ph.D., a third generation acupuncturist, founder of the Chi Institute and head clinician of traditional Chinese veterinary medicine at the University of Florida. Disease is an imbalance in the body When a disease pattern is identified, acupuncture is used to regulate the flow of qi (energy, sometimes known as chi) in the dogs body.
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