082 256 1572

Dr Arpana Bhagwan (BVSc)

Your fur kid is my priority



Certified veterinary Acupuncturists have comprehensive training, knowledge and skill to understand the interactions between different forms of treatment and to interpret the patient's response to therapy.


Dr Arpana Bhagwan has been trained in traditional Chinese acupuncture, and Western Acupuncture and chronic pain management, for small animals. It is vital that a professional veterinary assessment is made for correct treatment.     

Course of Action

Each acupuncture point has a specific action when stimulated. Acupuncture enhances blood circulation, nervous system circulation, and the release of anti-inflammatory and pain relieving hormones.  

Treatment Method

Acupuncture is a complementary medicine which involves inserting fine needles into the body at certain points. This is done to manipulate the flow energy along the energy channels, also known as meridians, within the body produce a healing response.  

Is Acupuncture treatment painful?

Virtually Painless

In animals the insertion of acupuncture needles is virtually painless. Nevertheless, acupuncture treatment may cause some sensation, presumed to be those such as tingles, cramps, or numbness which can occur in humans and which may be uncomfortable to some animals.

Relaxation and relief

In all animals once the needles are in place, there should be no pain and most animals become very relaxed and sleepy.

Professional assessment for treatment

Acupuncture is a complementary medicine or alternative therapy which involves the insertion of fine needles into the body at specific points along the meridians (channels of energy )

Alternative and holistic means of  treatment is becoming a growing awareness and application for pet owners in South Africa.

This can only be elevated based on the success of the improvement achieved. However, once again it is stressed that a trained veterinary professional assessment before any alternate means of future treatment is of vital importance for commencement and diagnosis of further alternate treatment.

An ongoing assessment of the patient’s condition must be under qualified veterinary supervision.This is critical because acupuncture is capable of masking pain or other clinical signs and may delay proper veterinary diagnosis once treatment has begun. Elimination of pain may lead to increased activity by the animal, and will thus delay healing or the original cause to worsen.

Certified veterinary Acupuncturists have comprehensive training, knowledge and skill to understand the interactions between different forms of treatment and to interpret the patient’s response to therapy.

Certified professionals for Acupuncture treatment is vital


The tradition of acupuncture theory believes that energy flows within the body and this energy can be channelized to create balance and health. this energy is called QI

Acupuncture theory believes that this QI moves throughout the body along 12 main channels known as meridians. These meridians represent the major organs and functions of the body. These meridians however do not follow the exact pathways of nerves and blood flow.

Acupuncture aims to correct imbalances of the Qi and restore health through stimulation. The needles are inserted through the skin at points along the meridians of the body.

Scientists have long explored the cause behind efficacy of acupuncture. Some researchers suggest that pain relief from acupuncture occurs when acupuncture needles stimulate nerves. In addition acupuncture may also release pain – relieving chemicals, such as endorphins and serotonin to ease symptoms. acupuncture may also decrease pain – causing inflammation by stimulating the pituitary gland to release cortisol.

Contemporary practice of acupuncture on the whole has 2 main approaches:

Western Medical Acupuncture involves the use of acupuncture as a therapy following orthodox clinical diagnosis. Points are chosen based on neurophysiological principles. Local needling of trigger points ( a tender point on a taut band of skeletal muscle which triggers a pain or other symptom locally or at a distance ), tender points ( a point in the body chose for insertion of an acupuncture needle ) predominates in treating somatic pathology, and segmental needling is used to enhance the effect.

Traditional Chinese Acupuncture: This involves traditional diagnosis and includes using the tongue and peripheral pules for examination of the patient. Points are selected according to one or more of the traditional concepts.


In western medical terms, acupuncture can assist the body to heal itself by affecting certain physiological changes. For example, acupuncture can stimulate nerves, increase blood circulation, relieve muscle spasm, and cause the release of hormones, such as endorphins (one of the body’s pain control chemicals) and cortisol (a natural steroid). Although many of acupuncture’s physiological effects have been studied, many more are still unknown. Further research must be conducted to discover all of acupuncture’s effects and its proper uses in veterinary medicine.

The specific effects of acupuncture needling are mediated through stimulation of the peripheral nervous system and neuromodulation within the central nervous system which occurs as consequence.

The effects may be categorised by their site of action:


(within the immediate vicinity of the needle)

These effects include afferent nerve stimulation, vasodilation, blood vessel proliferation, nerve growth.


(within the  segment of the spinal cord where the nerves from the needled site enters the CNS)

These effects include pain modulation and automatic modulation.


(at all segmental levels of the CNS)

Effects include enhanced descending inhibition.


(effects which appear to impinge on the whole body).

These effects include the limbic system deactivation, endorphin release, ACTH release, Oxytocin release.


This refers to the technique of stimulating acupuncture needles with electrical impulses from a pulse generator.

Electrical nerve stimulators or TENS differs that the electrodes are carbon impregnated rubber pads. Before this method, needles were manually stimulated continuously throughout treatment. 

The frequency now that flows through the needles in electroacupuncture now offers what is known as dense-dispersed

This is explained as the frequency automatically alternates between high and low every few seconds

The advantage of this is reducing accommodation of the nerve fibres to the stimulus.


Musculoskeletal problems ( for pain ), such as arthritis, any muscle pain ( including back and neck ), stiffness or lameness due to ligaments strain, intervertebral disk disease, or traumatic nerve injury.

Post operative pain or muscle spasm/tension/trigger points.


Pain from nerve damage, muscle atrophy, limb paresis or paralysis.


Respiratory problems such as feline asthma


Skin problems such as lick granulomas and certain types of allergic dermatitis.


Open wounds and ulceration.


Certain Gastrointestinal problems.

Certain urinary problems such as incontinence or retention.