Our clinic will remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn More or Call us: 805-781-8888. Get Directions. After Hour Emergencies: 805-466-3880


How does acupuncture work?

Acupuncture works by stimulating points in locations of specific connective tissue, muscles, and nerves. We may also select “trigger points” to needle, in order to release tight and contracted regions in your pet’s muscles. When we stimulate these points using acupuncture, it causes a reaction that leads to your pet’s own opioid (natural pain control) release and increase blood flow to those regions. Better blood flow to your pet’s tissues allows regeneration and removal of waste products that cause inflammation.

Acupuncture can help with:

  • Pain
  • Hospice and cancer patient comfort
  • Anxiety
  • Gastrointestinal conditions
  • Urinary conditions
  • Immune function
  • Some neurologic conditions
  • Some reproductive concerns
  • Some skin conditions

What should you expect during your pet’s acupuncture session?

Your pet’s first acupuncture visit will include a full comprehensive examination. This gives us the ability to go over any health concerns we should address prior to your pet’s treatments, as well as identify what points your pet will benefit from most.

Pets are often relaxed after their treatments, but occasionally pets can be a little sore the day they go home. Your pet may have visible improvement in their movement and pain right away, while others take multiple treatments before we see results. More chronic conditions, for example, often require more treatments. Most pets can be expected to have weekly to monthly sessions to maintain the benefit of their Acupuncture.

Every pet’s treatment is tailored to them! Some pets will do best in your arms, and others may prefer to be on the floor or on a table. We do what they are most comfortable with. We start with massage, and this may be all they will allow their first session. We will slowly begin needling as they tolerate it. We let your pet tell us how we need to proceed — our goal is for them to LOVE coming in for their acupuncture treatments!

Massage Therapy

Massage therapy is a great way to help your pet feel happy and healthy. A session with a certified massage therapist can be fun and very rewarding. It is also exciting to learn techniques to build the bond between you and your pet.

There are several types of dog massage therapy techniques. It can be helpful to use different techniques in order to provide a tailormade massage for you pet. Some techniques include:

  • Swedish Massage
  • Acupressure
  • Tellington T-touch
  • Tapotement
  • Reiki
  • Myofascial Release

Contact us if you would like to set up a massage therapy session for your pet or to take a massage therapy lesson.

Contact Us

Mission Animal Hospital


3973 South Higuera Street San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

Clinic Hours

Monday-Friday 8 am to 5 pm
Saturday- Sunday 9am to 3pm