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Emily Harrison, DVM, CVA

Credentials Email: oboevet@gmail.com
Phone: (914) 420-5420

Areas of coverage:
Westchester and Putnam counties in New York and western portions of Fairfield County in Connecticut.
The following is taken from Martha Stewart's blog site.

Francesca Gets Acupuncture

Once a week, my French Bulldog, Francesca, gets a visit from veterinarian Dr. Emily Harrison, who is trained in canine and equine acupuncture, Chinese medicine, and herbal therapies. Francesca is under her care for overall wellness, but also for immune and endocrine system support now that she is getting a little older...click here to read the entire blog. [screenshot taken from Martha Stewarts Blog site]

Hover your mouse over the slideshow to pause it

Your dog won’t realize it’s a visit from the vet!
In-home acupuncture for your dog eliminates the stress of going to the vet while allowing Dr. Harrison to see your animal in its everyday environment. Because there is no temperature taking or blood draws involved in Dr. Harrison’s house call, your dog will be happy to see her when she rings the doorbell. Acupuncture in stress-free and comfortable surroundings is ideal for maximizing the benefits of Chinese medicine.

Dog Acupuncture FAQs

Select the question below to reveal the answer
How does acupuncture work?
Acupuncture is the root of traditional Chinese medicine and operates on the philosophy that bodily functions and athletic performance are dependent on the smooth flow of energy throughout the body. This energy is called Qi (pronounced “chee”) and it flows along discreet, well-described pathways called “meridians”. Qi must flow seamlessly in order for the body to stay healthy, pain-free and in balance. When Qi does become blocked, we recognize this as disease or injury. Acupuncture involves placing tiny needles at very specific locations along the meridians to stimulate the flow of energy and return the body to its properly balanced state. While thousands of years of evidence supports the efficacy of acupuncture, there is also extensive modern-day scientific research proving the merits of acupuncture in treating pain, inflammation, and dozens of illnesses and various hormonal disturbances.
Chinese herbal medicine is an important adjunct therapy to almost all acupuncture.

Chinese Herbs

Jing Tang Herbal Products

What are the benefits of using Chinese herbs?

Chinese herbal medicine is an important adjunct therapy to almost all acupuncture. Combinations of powerful natural ingredients can both enhance the effects of the acupuncture and maximize the amount of time that your animal can go between acupuncture treatments. The Chinese herbal formulas used by Dr. Harrison all come from Jing Tang Herbal, a state-of-the-art and closely regulated facility that produces high-quality veterinary herbal medicine. Through Jing Tang Herbal, Dr. Harrison has access to hundreds of herbal medicines. The herbal formula she selects for your animal depends on the animal’s Bian Zheng—the results of his/her Chinese physical exam.

What form do the herbs come in and will my dog eat them?

Most herbal formulas are used for anywhere between 1 and 6 months.Tea Pills For an acute problem or injury, your animal may only need a short course of herbal medicine. For more chronic problems, herbal therapy may be extended. The Chinese herbs come in several different forms and the form that your animal is prescribed will depend on his/her temperament and appetite. Tea pills are tiny black ballsPowder that can be easily hidden in food. The capsule form is an option for more picky eaters and powder is generally reserved for larger dogs and all horses. Many of the more commonly-used herbal medications also come in concentrated forms to ease administration. While goats, camelids and other ruminants can be safely given herbal medication, their unique form of digestion requires a MUCH higher dosage of the herb—this is often cost-prohibitive or impractical.

Some examples of commonly prescribed herbs:

  1. Body Sore (good for treating soft tissue injuries, back pain and musculoskeletal problems)
  2. Shen Calmer (good for calming anxious animals)
  3. Stasis Breaker (good for slowing tumor growth in stable animals)
  4. Hindquarter Weakness (good for stabilizing and promoting hind-end strength in dogs with lumbosacral problems)
  5. Tendon and Ligament Formula (good for promoting healing of tendon/ligament injuries including cruciate tears in dogs)
  6. External Wind (good for quieting down itchy skin)
  7. Double P II (good for treating acute intervertebral disc disease)
  8. Jin Suo Gu Jing/Suo Quan Wan (good for treating urinary incontinence)
  9. Dok’s Formula (good for treating arthritis, chronic joint pain, hip dysplasia and degenerative joint disease)
What problems can be treated with acupuncture?


  • Arthritis
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Back pain (including intervertebral disc disease)
  • Hind-end weakness
  • Cruciate ligament tears
  • Acute herniated disc
  • Post-operative pain management
  • Wobblers
  • Seizures

Internal medicine

  • Urinary incontinence
  • Skin disease and allergies
  • Chronic diarrhea (including IBD)
  • Cancer (adjunctive therapy to radiation/chemo)
  • Kidney failure
  • Respiratory problems
  • Infertility
  • Endocrine problems (including diabetes, hypothyroidsim Cushings)
  • Laryngeal paralysis


  • Separation anxiety
  • Aggression
What will my dog experience during his acupuncture treatment?
Acupuncture is essentially a pain-free process and most dogs tolerate needle placement well. Many dogs actively enjoy the process and may even fall asleep with the needles in. The needles used during treatment are tiny with some measuring just a few millimeters long. The number of needles placed per treatment varies depending on the age of the dog, the condition being treated, and the overall health and stability of the dog. Treatment length ranges from as short as 8 minutes to as long as 20 minutes and is tailored to your dog’s specific needs.
How much time should I allow for an appointment and what should I expect?
An average routine acupuncture treatment takes about 30 minutes. However, during the initial appointment, please allow one hour as a detailed Chinese and Western medical history must obtained. At the beginning of every appointment, Dr. Harrison will perform a Chinese exam including tongue color/quality assessment, pulse evaluation and external body temperature review. This exam will help Dr. Harrison reach a Chinese diagnosis as well as choose the most beneficial acupuncture points for your animal.
When can I expect to see a difference in my dog?
It is crucial to remember that acupuncture is a cumulative process and that a dog’s response to therapy is extremely variable. Your dog may have an immediate and dramatically positive response to treatment or he/she may show a more gradual, subtle response. In general, when being treated for an orthopedic condition—including arthritis, back/disc pain, hind-end weakness, and cruciate ligament tears—most dogs respond within 3-5 treatments spaced roughly 1 week apart. When treating internal medicine, skin, and behavior cases, a response is generally seen in 7-9 treatments.
When is an herbal medication appropriate for my dog?
There is almost always an appropriate herbal medication to accompany your dog’s acupuncture treatment. Although not required, herbal medication can enhance the effects of the acupuncture treatment and extend the amount of the time between acupuncture treatments. In most instances, any given herbal medication is taken for a relatively short period of time (1-3 months). After that time period, your dog may be “rested” from the prescribed herb for 1 month or switched to a different herb. The herbal formulas for dogs come in three different forms—powder, capsules and tea pills—and the form ordered depends on your dog’s size, appetite and willingness to be medicated. It is important to note that the herbal formulas prescribed by Dr. Harrison are not supplements. They are potent, prescription-only medications.
Does Dr. Harrison treat cats or other domestic pets?

Dr. Harrison has successfully treated numerous feline patients with acupuncture, although they often require professional restraint during the needling process. If your cat isn’t willing be safely needled, it may be a great candidate for “laserpuncture”. Laserpuncture involves stimulating the traditional Chinese acupuncture points with a highly focused cold laser beam for about 1 minute each. There are no needles involved, no discomfort felt and the laser is universally well-tolerated.

What is Adequan and why is it the only Western medicine that Dr. Harrison uses?

Adequan is the only FDA-approved treatment proven to reverse degenerative joint disease. Adequan is a safe and effective therapy and is the only Western medication that Dr. Harrison will start dogs on. Why?Adequan Canine Adequan is an injectable therapy normally given at a single injection site in the muscle. Dr. Harrison uses Adequan for “aquapuncture” whereby she splits a normal dose into multiple smaller doses and injects them at several different acupuncture points. Not only does your dog get the therapeutic benefit of the Adequan, but also the benefit of the Adequan pushing on the acupuncture point, providing a prolonged stimulation. For dogs, there is an initial 1-month loading period during which the Adequan is administered twice weekly. After the loading period, the drug is given every 3-4 weeks and will be tailored to your dog’s acupuncture schedule.

What does Adequan actually do?

  1. Relieves pain and reduces inflammation in the joint membrane
  2. Improves joint lubrication and facilitates motion within the joint
  3. Inhibits noxious enzymes that destroy joint fluid and cartilage
  4. Stimulates cartilage repair
Visiting Veterinary Services, PLLC • PO Box 413 • Katonah, NY 10536 • (914) 420-5420 • oboevet@gmail.com