Animal Hospital of Dunedin

Complementary Therapies

Animal Hospital of Dunedin is focused on giving your pet the most effective medical practices and procedures possible, regardless of where they originate. We pride ourselves on using the most advanced technologies possible to suggest treatment and give diagnosis. Some of these treatments include complementary therapies. We offer four kinds of complementary therapies, Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine, Acupuncture, Dermatology, and Herbal Medicine.

Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

At Animal Hospital of Dunedin, we integrate Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine with Western veterinary practices to support the best clinical outcomes in our patients.

Although these services have been used in China for thousands of years, they are relatively new to the veterinary field in the United States.

There is often the misconception that the terms Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture can be used interchangeably. In truth, there are four branches that make up Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine: acupuncture, food therapy, Tui-na, and herbal medicine.

The four branches of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine include:

  1. Acupuncture
  2. Food Therapy
  3. Tui-na
  4. Herbal Medicine

At Animal Hospital of Dunedin, we integrate Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine with Western veterinary practices to support the best clinical outcomes in our patients.


Practiced in China for thousands of years, acupuncture is one of four branches that comprise Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine. The other four branches include food therapy, herbal medicine, and Tui-na.

At Animal Hospital of Dunedin, we recognize veterinary acupuncture as a time-proven practice to reduce and eliminate a variety of ailments in dogs and cats. Our clinical approach is to combine veterinary acupuncture with modern veterinary science to help maximize our patients’ quality of life.

If you think your pet may be a good candidate for veterinary acupuncture treatments, we highly encourage you to schedule a visit. We can help your pet feel relief. 

How Does It Work?

The technique consists of tiny needles being gently and methodically inserted into specific pressure points on the body. This contact releases natural pain-relieving hormones and triggers an anti-inflammatory response in the body that accelerates healing and substantially reduces pain. Just like in human medicine!

We understand that needles are often a source of anxiety. We assure you, the veterinarians at Animal Hospital of Dunedin are highly experienced to safely and gently place the needles to treat acute and chronic conditions.

Small animals do not experience any pain, and oftentimes become so relaxed they doze off to sleep during the treatment session. Larger animals can experience low levels of discomfort when the needles are being inserted because they must be larger to break the skin. However, once the needles are inserted into the pressure points, the animal will feel no pain.

Is It Safe?

Acupuncture is one of the safest veterinary treatments out there. The technique can only produce positive results, offer copious mental and physical health benefits, and dodge the adverse reactions often caused by medications and surgeries.

The list of positive outcomes of acupuncture treatment is lengthy, including increased blood circulation, increased pain relief, accelerated healing, reduced anxiety, decreased muscle spasms, stimulation of the nerves, and release of hormones, endorphins, and natural-steroids.

What Conditions Can It Help To Treat?

Veterinary acupuncture is effective in the treatment of a wide range of conditions, and is most successful when paired with modern medicine. 

Veterinary acupuncture can help pets with the following ailments:

  • Musculoskeletal, such as arthritis, hip dysplasia, and degenerative joint disease
  • Dermatological, such as dermatitis
  • Respiratory, such as feline asthma
  • Gastrointestinal, such as diarrhea 
  • Select Reproductive Issues

For dermatological issues, veterinary acupuncture can help to relieve the discomfort and stress of continual itching and scratching without the need for drugs.

Veterinary Dermatology

Non-stop itching, mysterious lumps and bumps – dermatological issues can be physically taxing to pets, and cause mental distress too. At Animal Hospital of Dunedin, we are trained to help diagnose the root cause of your pet’s dermatological discomfort.

In general, conditions affecting the skin, hair, or nails fall under the umbrella term ‘dermatitis.’ Common signs of dermatitis, and an indication you should consult with your veterinarian, include: inflammation and redness of the skin, excessive licking or biting of the skin, hair loss, excessive shedding, watery eyes, and changes in behavior due to persistent irritation.

Our dermatology services treat pets suffering from dermatitis, parasite infections, allergies, and more. Based on your pet’s diagnosis, we may recommend one or a combination of the following:

  • Soothing Medicinal Baths
  • Allergy Testing
  • Acupuncture
  • Chinese Herbology
  • Flea Control
  • Hot Spot Treatments
  • Probiotic and nutraceutical options to compliment the treatment plan

If your pet is showing signs of dermatitis, it’s important to call and schedule a visit. The sooner we can make a diagnosis, the sooner your pet can feel relief, physically and mentally.

Herbal Medicine

The doctors at Animal Hospital of Dunedin have spent years studying Chinese medicine and herbal prescriptions, and are highly trained to determine the proper herbal formula for your pet

Chinese herbal medicine is the study and implementation of herbs, or a combination of herbs, to help combat disease in the body. It has proven to be an effective treatment model for conditions ranging from dermatitis to cancer. Clinical outcomes are most successful when used in combination with modern veterinary medicine and other alternative treatments, such as acupuncture.

Because the ingredients are all herbal, very few, if any, negative side effects are produced. In small animals, herbal formulas are typically administered orally in the form of a capsule or pill. 

When devising a treatment plan, our clinical team always looks at both schools of thought – Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine and Western Medicine. This means herbal therapy will always be paired with traditional veterinary medicine to bring forth the most comprehensive clinical outcomes in our patients. Generally, traditional veterinary medicine is best for treating acute conditions. On the other hand, Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine is best for treating the entire bodily system, not only the ailment. Together, these schools of thought are complementary and robust.

At present, Chinese herbal medicine can benefit a variety of medical conditions that challenge traditional veterinary medicine. If immediate surgery is required, Chinese herbal medicine cannot be considered as a treatment option. 

The most common conditions treated with the help of Chinese herbal medicine include:

  • Epilepsy
  • Chronic Kidney Failure
  • Chronic Lameness
  • Hormonal Disorders
  • Behavioral Disorders
  • Allergic Skin Disease
  • Liver Failure
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease

In some cases, the herbs are not used to treat a condition. Rather, they are used as a tonic to support healthy organ functioning.

Join the Animal Hospital of Dunedin Family Today!

Conveniently located off of Main Street on the corner of Pinehurst Road and San Christopher Dr.

Phone: 727.733.9351


  • Monday: 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 7:30 AM - 8:00 PM
  • Thursday: 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Friday: 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Saturday: 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Sunday: Closed